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Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) - Repatriation Grants

Grants to USA Native Tribes, Villages, Organizations,
and Museums to Preserve Native American Burial Remains

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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U.S. Department of the Interior - National Park Service

Deadline Date:

05/14/21 11:59 PM Pacific Time


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Grants to USA Indian tribes, Native villages and organizations, and museums to preserve Native American burial remains. Applicants are advised that required registrations may take several weeks to complete. Funding is intended for the expenses associated with the packaging, transportation, contamination removal, reburial and/or storage of NAGPRA-related cultural items.

This program supports the following Secretary of the Interior Priorities:

  • Expand lines of communication with Governors, state natural resource offices, Fish and Wildlife offices, water authorities, county commissioners, Tribes, and local communities.
  • Support tribal self-determination, self-governance, and sovereignty.
  • Reduce the administrative and regulatory burden imposed on U.S. industry and the public.

The program supports the priorities listed above by assisting Indian Tribes, Native Hawaiian organizations, and museums in repatriation activities required under NAGPRA. Grant funds support activities including transportation, reburial, and training, all of which are required under the regulations. Through these activities, this grant program allows all recipients to expand lines of communication with Tribes, support tribal sovereignty, and reduce the administrative and regulatory burden imposed by the Act.

Grant funds must be used for repatriation under NAGPRA, which means the transfer of control of Native American human remains and/or cultural items to lineal descendants, Indian tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations. Repatriation includes disposition of culturally unidentifiable Native American human remains.

Eligible Grant Activities

  • a. Travel by representatives from Indian tribes, Native Hawaiian organizations and museums to prepare and/or accompany Native American human remains and/or cultural items to the Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization
  • b. Transportation of Native American human remains and/or cultural items to the Indian tribe or Native Hawaiian organization
  • c. Hazardous substance testing, documentation, and decontamination of Native American human remains and/or cultural items 
  • d. Construction of appropriate containers for the transport and disposition of repatriated Native American human remains and/or cultural items
  • e. Ceremonial materials necessary for the appropriate return of Native American human remains and/or cultural items
  • f. Staff time dedicated to the administrative and logistical arrangements of repatriation

See the table on page 7 of the NOFO in Attached Documents below for an outline of the scope of activities allowed under a NAGPRA Repatriation grant.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 164780

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

Based on prior year data, NPS anticipates between 10 and 15 agreements for FY2021.

Estimated Size of Grant:

- Award Ceiling: $15,000
- Award Floor: $1,000
- The amount of funding available per award for this NOFO will be determined once final FY2021 appropriations have been made. This NOFO will be cancelled if FY2021 appropriations are insufficient to support new awards.

Term of Contract:

- Agreement terms for funded projects are estimated to last approximately thirteen months, depending on the negotiated project statement of work.
- Projects receiving funding through this NOFO will start once funding has been secured and awards have been made, which may be on a rolling basis.
- Funding may take an additional ten weeks to become available after an award is announced.


  • City or township governments
  • County governments
  • Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized)
  • Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
  • Private institutions of higher education
  • Public and State controlled institutions of higher education
  • See RFP and/or Grant Guidelines for full eligibility
  • State governments

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Native Hawaiian Organizations include any organization that serves and represents the interests of Native Hawaiians, has the primary purpose of the provision of services to Native Hawaiians, and has the expertise in Native Hawaiian affairs.

Federally-recognized Indian tribes, Alaska Native villages, Native Hawaiian organizations, and museums are eligible to apply.

The following entities are eligible to apply for a NAGPRA Repatriation Grant:
a. An Indian Tribe or Native Hawaiian Organization
An "Indian tribe" means any tribe, band, nation, or other organized group or community of Indians, including any Alaska Native village (as defined in, or established pursuant to, the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act), which is recognized as eligible for the special programs and services provided by the United States to Indians because of their status as Indians. The Department of the Interior has interpreted this definition as applying to over Indian tribes and Alaska Native villages that are recognized by the United States Government. The Bureau of Indian Affairs’ list of federally recognized tribes is posted on the National NAGPRA website at This list does not include Alaska regional or village corporations, although Alaska Native Villages may contract work under grants to such corporations.

“Native Hawaiian organization” includes any organization that: a) serves and represents the interests of Native Hawaiians; b) has as a primary and stated purpose the provision of services to Native Hawaiians; and c) has expertise in Native Hawaiian Affairs. NAGPRA states that such Native Hawaiian organizations shall include the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

b. A museum that has control of Native American human remains, funerary objects, sacred objects, or objects of cultural patrimony and has received Federal funds. The term “Museum” includes state or local government agencies, private institutions, and institutions of higher learning that have received Federal funds.

Applicants who previously received a NAGPRA grant, but whose grant expired without successfully completing major elements of the proposed work or without meeting the conditions of the grant award may be penalized in the review process. If an applicant has questions about their eligibility, they should contact the Awarding Agency using the information provided in Section G of the NOFO in Attached Documents below.

Federal agencies may not apply for grants.

Pre-award costs are not allowable unless specified in the written grant agreement.

Applications for renewal or supplementation of existing projects are not eligible to compete with applications for new Federal awards.

Pre-Application Information:

- Complete applications must be submitted to the National Park Service by Friday, May 14, 2021, 11:59 PM PT.
- Anticipated Award Date: August 1, 2021

- Applicants must use the current year's NOFO, as they are subject to change from year to year.
- Applications will be reviewed and evaluated as they are received and may be submitted at any time up until the closing date of this announcement. An applicant's failure to meet an eligibility criterion by the closing date of this announcement will result in the application being excluded from consideration. This includes but is not limited to late and incomplete application packages.
- Proposals will be evaluated on a rolling basis as applications are received. Merit reviews will typically be completed within 90 days of receipt. Funding may take an additional ten weeks to become available after an award is announced.

- Applicants may submit more than one repatriation proposal during the fiscal year. A separate and complete proposal package must be submitted for each repatriation project. A maximum of $15,000 is available per repatriation proposal.
- Multiple proposals may be submitted for the same repatriation by different parties if there is no overlap of funds. Applicants are encouraged to accomplish the repatriation of items listed in separate notices, but from the same museum or in the same geographical area, in a single repatriation proposal.

Repatriation grant applications must demonstrate the following for each unique repatriation:
a. The human remains and/or cultural items that are being transferred have been published in a Notice of Inventory Completion and/or Notice of Intent to Repatriate in the Federal Register, and the required 30 day waiting period has passed.
b. The legal transfer of control of the human remains and/or cultural items from the museum or Federal agency to the Indian tribe or NHO has occurred and is documented in writing.

For Museums:
- Determine if museum trustees or personnel require additional training on NAGPRA
- Identify other museums conducting NAGPRA work and discuss with them what made their repatriations successful
- Establish partnerships with Indian Tribes/Native Hawaiian organizations

For Indian Tribes/Native Hawaiian Organizations:
- Determine if elected officials, tribal elders, traditional religious leaders, or staff require additional training on NAGPRA
- Identify other tribes/Native Hawaiian organizations conducting NAGPRA work and discuss with them what made their repatriations successful
- If necessary, identify resources to help with reburial
- Establish partnerships with museums

Currently, the registration process requires information in three separate systems. (Registration may take up to 4 weeks to complete all steps):
- Dun and Bradstreet (
- System for Award Management (SAM) (
- (

View this opportunity on

For a list of application documents, see the Package tab (press Preview) on the page above.

How to Apply for Grants:

Contact Information:

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

Sarah Glass
National NAGPRA Program
1849 C Street NW
Mail Stop 7360
Washington, DC 20240
Phone: 202-354-2201

In the event the applicant experiences technical difficulties with submitting their application, please contact the Help Desk toll free at 1-800-518-4726 or

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Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

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