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Public Program Grants

Grants to Oregon Nonprofits and Tribal Organizations
for Programs that Address Important Community Issues

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Oregon Humanities (OH)

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

12/12/19 11:59 PM


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Grants ranging from $1,000 to $10,000 to Oregon nonprofit organizations for programs that address complex issues for the betterment of the community. Applicants must submit a Letter of Interest prior to submitting a full proposal. Consideration will be given to community-based programs based in rural communities or communities of color.

Oregon Humanities has limited grant funds to award and is committed to funding programming that centers those most affected by a topic in order to elevate perspectives that have historically been undervalued and particularly programming based in and led by rural communities and/or communities of color. Programs can be in multiple languages or be in a language other than English. 

Oregon Humanities is committed to intentionally challenging and dismantling disproportionately oppressive systems.  Policies that prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) are devised and implemented in order to build a culture of transparency, trust, and accountability internally and in the work that is done externally.

Oregon Humanities’ Public Program Grants support a diversity of program subjects and formats that explore challenging topics and fit the following criteria.

  • Centering those most affected: Program planning, topics, content, and outreach should respond to and engage with the life experiences, perspectives, and knowledge held by those most impacted by the topic.
  • Help communities explore complex topics: Program format and content should help participants deepen their understanding of the topic and its complexities. Organizations should demonstrate why they are the ones to be leading this programming on the topic.
  • Build community voice and power: Programming should demonstrate a strategy to elevate the perspectives and life experiences of those who are most impacted by the program’s topic and build towards addressing challenging topics in the community.
  • Timely and Responsive: Program topic should demonstrate relevance to or feedback from the community and the intended audience(s) of the program. 

Oregon Humanities funds a wide variety of programs and activities. For example: community dialogues, lectures, online engagements, storytelling formats that elevate undertold experiences, programming connecting exhibits to current experiences, inter and intracultural events.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 146521

Estimated Size of Grant:

The Foundation awards Public Program Grants between $1,000 - $10,000. The average Oregon Humanities grant is $5,500.

Term of Contract:

All program expenses and activities must take place after March 1, 2020 and during the grant period defined in the proposal by the applicant. Grant periods begin on the first day of the month during which expenses are incurred or activities take place and end on the last day of the month during which expenses and activities cease.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Organizations applying for a Public Program Grant must meet the following requirements to be eligible for funding:

- Be incorporated as a nonprofit in the state of Oregon or be a federally recognized tribe in Oregon. Nonprofit applicants can be registered as a 501(c)(3) organization located in Oregon or be registered with the State of Oregon as a charitable organization. All awardees must be able to complete an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) W-9 form in order to receive payment from Oregon Humanities:
- Have an organizational budget under $1.5 million for the last completed fiscal year if the applicant is not a federally recognized tribe.
- Have successfully closed out all prior Public Program Grants with Oregon Humanities prior to the Letter of Interest deadline. It is ok to have an open Responsive Program Grant that is in good standing.
- Not be the recipients of Public Program Grants in the previous two cycles. As a result, organizations awarded a Public Program Grant in both 2018 and 2019 are not eligible to apply for a 2020 Public Program Grant and must wait until the 2021 grant cycle to be eligible to apply again.

Organizations that are not nonprofits may apply using a fiscal sponsor if the fiscal sponsor meets the eligibility requirements. Please contact Oregon Humanities prior to initiating a grant proposal to discuss fiscal sponsorships.

Not Funded:

Lobbying or fundraising activities are not supported; unallowable costs such as alcohol, entertainment, or first-class travel; or activities that advocate for a particular political or social party, agenda, or action. All Public Program Grant funds awarded by Oregon Humanities are federal in origin.

In addition, Public Program Grants do not fund the following:

- The production and creation of films, visual arts, performances, books, and publications
- Host fees for Conversation Project events, fees for Facilitation Training by Oregon Humanities, or other
- Oregon Humanities programming
- Scholarships, fellowships, or awards
- Ticket fees
- Capital projects (i.e., renovation or purchase of buildings or land)
- Programs that do not meet the non-discrimination statutes outlined in the Certifications section of the main URL

Pre-Application Information:

Timeline and Grant Periods:
- Letter of interest submitted online by end-of-day Thursday, October 17, 2019
- Invitation for full proposal announced by Thursday, November 14, 2019
- Full proposals submitted online by end-of-day Thursday, December 12, 2019
- Award decisions announced by mid-February 2020
- Programming begins after March 1, 2020

It is a requirement for all applicants to obtain a Data Universal Number System (DUNS) number and register with the System for Award Management (SAM) at For organizations that have never registered for a SAM, the process can take up to sixty days.

It is important to begin this process while completing your Letter of Interest application because you will be required to produce proof of registration with SAM to submit a full proposal.

All grant awards must be matched at least 1:1 with earned, contributed, or in-kind support from the applicant or co-applicant. In-kind cost share is the dollar value of goods and services contributed to the program by third parties.

How to apply:

How to obtain a DUNS number:

How to register for SAM:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

To submit the Letter of Interest Form:

For questions, contact:

Kyle Weismann-Yee, Program Coordinator
(503) 241-0543, ext. 112
(800) 735-0543, ext. 112

Oregon Humanities
921 SW Washington St., Suite 150
Portland, OR 97205

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Oregon

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