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African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund

National Trust for Historic Preservation

Funding Amount

$50,000 - $150,000

Matching Funds

Funding Cycle

Letter of intent: December 19, 2022
Application Deadline: April 7, 2023
Yearly grant will open back up later this year


Capital Projects:
- Restoration, rehabilitation, stabilization, and preservation of historic assets and buildings

Organizational Capacity Building:
- Hiring new senior/director-level or leadership staff to increase the organization’s preservation stewardship and management capacity (funds can be used to support salaries and benefits for grant-supported staff.) Applicants can request up to $150,000 for a two-year period
- Increasing current part-time staff to full-time staff positions in order to advance preservation priorities. Applicants can request up to $100,000 for a two-year period
- Convening board, governance, and nonprofit management trainings and organizational development activities such as strategic planning for the organization. Applicants can request $50,000 and can direct up to 10% for indirect support/overhead costs

Project Planning:
- Obtaining the services of consultants with expertise in the areas such as preservation architecture and planning, business development, engineering and environmental studies, legal issues, fundraising and financial sustainability, organizational development, education, etc. to develop plans for implementation by organization
- Development of viable business plans for preservation organizations, pre-development planning activities, feasibility studies for market-driven revitalization projects, preservation plans, engineering and environmental studies, property condition assessment reports with cost analysis, historic structures reports, etc.
- Applicants can request up to $75,000 and can direct up to 10% for indirect support/overhead costs

Programming and Interpretation:
- Designing and implementing innovative preservation education, documentation, mapping, and interpretative programs
- Collaborating with artists, creatives, and scholars to re-imagine interpretation and programming, while advancing new approaches to storytelling and public education
- Sponsoring preservation conferences, trainings, and workshops
- Designing, producing, and marketing printed materials or other media communications
- Designating sites at the local and/or national levels
- Applicants can request $50,000 and can direct up to 10% for indirect support/overhead costs

Who Can Apply

Eligible applicants include:
- Public agencies: State or local agencies including boards, commissions, departments, accredited public colleges or universities, offices, agencies, public bodies, or political subdivisions of the state or of a county or municipality. Examples include state historic preservation offices, city and county preservation offices and planning departments, state and local commissions focused on different aspects of heritage, and publicly owned historic sites and museums
- 501(c)(3), and other (federally designated) nonprofit organizations: A broad-range of 501(c)(3) organizations are eligible to apply, including state and local preservation organizations, churches, accredited private colleges or universities, historic sites, museums, historical societies, and genealogical associations

While this is not an exhaustive list, there are several themes we are particularly interested in:
- Activism and Protest Movements
- Achievement and Innovation (education, science, business, politics, etc.)
- Architecture and Black Architects
- Black Architects in Modernism
- Arts, Culture, and Creative Expression
- Cemeteries and Burial Grounds
- Education (Not Rosenwald School Specific)
- Free Black Settlements and Agricultural History
- Historically Black Colleges and Universities
- Churches and Sacred Places
- Sites of Enslavement
- Heritage Landscapes
- Sports & Recreation
- Green Book Sites
- Statewide African American preservation organizations
- Reconstruction Era Sites
- Rosenwald Schools
- Women’s History
- LGBTQ+ History
- Cities (addressing issues of displacement, gentrification, and affordability, and advancing solutions for historic urban redevelopment)
- Rural (advancing solutions to grow local economies, heritage tourism, and preservation of Black history)
- Black Craftmanship and Craftspeople as expressed in the Built Environment

Additional Eligibility Requirements

Project Planning and Programming-related grants must be completed within one year of the initial grant disbursement date. Capital Project-related grants must be completed within 18 months of the initial grant disbursement

The Letter of Intent review period will take approximately twelve weeks. All applicants will be notified of their status at the end of this initial review period, likely in early March. If the applicant’s Letter of Intent is accepted, a full application will be requested. Instructions on how to complete the full application will be sent only to those organizations moving forward. The applicant will have approximately four weeks to complete and submit the full application once you receive a notice to proceed

A Letter of Intent (LOI) must be submitted using the National Trust’s online grant application system. The LOI form will capture basic information about your organization and your project. When completing the LOI, you may need the following items:
- An IRS letter of determination (nonprofit applicants)
- A list of major donors to your organization or project
- Up to three photos of your site, if applicable

Application (Letter of Intent Form):
Please note: You will be taken to the National Trust grants application system where you will need to create a user profile for your organization. This is a separate login from your National Trust login)



Additional Information

For additional information and/or questions, please email

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