ANNOUNCEMENT: Because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, all NJCH-funded public events are postponed through August 2020. Postponements include all grant, Public Scholars Project (PSP), and MoMS activities that involve any in-person gatherings. In July, we will announce fall programming updates for grants and PSP. Check back for further updates.
Our Incubation and Action Grants ($2,000 to $20,000) fund the development of meaningful humanities projects for New Jersey audiences. These projects demonstrate an awareness of the needs and interests of your audience and offer an opportunity for community members to explore our shared history, culture, values, and beliefs.
We welcome applications from libraries, museums, educational institutions, social service organizations, historical societies, cultural organizations, and other community organizations. Colleges and universities will need to demonstrate meaningful public engagement beyond the confines of the institution to have a competitive proposal.
Projects should involve a strong project team and must include a humanities scholar. As you begin thinking about your grant proposal, please don’t hesitate to reach out to NJCH staff. We can connect you with resources, help you think through your project, and assist you in preparing a competitive proposal.
Any project supported by NJCH must have humanities at its core. Projects may take any form as long as they meet grant requirements. NJCH staff can help you determine which grant type is most appropriate for the project you envision.
The most competitive grant proposals support one or more of the Council’s primary goals:
- to build new audiences for the humanities.
- to bring people of different perspectives and backgrounds together.
- to innovate new program models.
- to create lively humanities opportunities around the state.
- Applicant must be a registered nonprofit organization or government entity in New Jersey, with at least one year of verifiable public operation prior to application.
- Applicants may not have an open grant with NJCH during the proposed grant period. (One exception: organizations serving as a fiscal agent may also have a self-directed project funded.)
- Ad-hoc groups may apply only as a co-sponsoring organization; an eligible organization must serve as the principal applicant and take fiscal responsibility.
- All proposed projects must involve a humanities scholar at some phase of the project (for more about humanities scholars, please see the Grant FAQ).
- General operating support.
- Direct social action or political advocacy.
- Projects that provide academic credit, scholarships, fellowships, or regular course offerings.
- Scholarly programs directed to a limited audience.
- Arts projects that do not contain significant humanities component or perspective.
- Capital projects or the purchase of capital equipment greater than $5,000.
- Repayment of loans or debts.
- Fundraising activities.
All project costs must be reasonable, necessary to accomplish project objectives, and incurred during the grant period. The budget submitted must include all project costs, not only those charged to NJCH grant funds, but also those that will be supported by the applicant organization or by other funding sources (cost share). Values assigned should be reasonable in relation to rates paid for similar work, current market prices, or fair rental charges.
NJCH re-grants federal funds that it receives from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Please consult your organization’s accountant or auditor to determine if you are subject to certain governmental audit requirements as a result of your receipt of these federal funds. The fiscal officer should follow standard accounting procedures. Since all grants may be subject to NJCH and NEH audit, grant recipients must maintain financial records for at least three years following submission of the final report.
- Capital purchases or acquisitions of major equipment over $5,000 in value.
- Entertainment costs.
- Costs incurred prior to or after the grant period.
Cost share is the portion of the project costs not covered by NJCH funds. This is also referred to as “matching funds.” The Council requires the applicant to provide a minimum at least a 100% match for the funds requested from NJCH. Cost share may be from the applicant organization and/or third party sources (individuals, foundations, corporations, etc.) other than the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). Cost share may be from any combination of in-kind contributions (donated goods or services), monetary contributions, or from the applicant’s operating budget. Cost share may be applied to any project expense category.
Also known as “administrative costs,” “overhead,” and “general operating costs,” indirect costs are incurred by organization through the execution of its day-to-day activities but cannot be attached to a specific activity. They are the expenses that keep the lights on, give everyone a space to work and the equipment they need, pay for insurance, and manage financial transactions. Indirect cost equations will vary depending on the organization; NJCH staff can help you determine an appropriate amount for your project. Colleges and universities are not eligible to include indirect costs in their proposed budgets.
Any organization that receives a grant from NJCH will be required to have appropriate general liability coverage for their project and to list the Council as an additional insured. We recommend that you check with your insurance carrier to determine what costs may be incurred from these insurance requirements and incorporate those costs into your grant budget.
NJCH’s online grant system incorporates all parts of the application process from the initial Intent to Apply up to final submission. The system will generate a unique URL that will enable your team to freely access the application system throughout the entire process.
Please read through the entire Grants section of our website to ensure that you are eligible to apply for a grant and to determine which type of grant best suits your project. The grant calendar will help you determine when all application materials are due and when your project can begin. The NJCH Calendar of Events also contains grant deadlines as well as information about upcoming grant workshops, if applicable.
The links are unique to their respective grants because the applications are different. The applications for each type of grant will only be active during the application period, but links to a printable versions of the application are available all the time.
This will unlock the Intent to Apply form. The primary contact will also be sent an email which contains the unique URL for your application. Please save this email.
NJCH staff will review your submitted Intent to Apply and notify you if you are invited to submit an application. If you are invited to submit, we will unlock the full application, which will be accessible from the same URL as the Intent to Apply. We strongly recommend that you submit the Intent to Apply early. The Intent to Apply does not become part of your final application. It is merely a quick way for NJCH staff to review your project to make sure your organization is eligible to apply for a grant and that your project is appropriate for NJCH funding.
Invited applicants may submit one draft for review prior to the draft deadline. We will offer feedback in advance of the deadline. We strongly recommend submitting draft materials early. Many applicants submit their draft prior to their site visit or phone consultation, but you may submit it anytime prior to the deadline, as best fits your needs.
It is strongly recommended that invited applicants schedule a site visit or phone consultation with NJCH staff prior to the application deadline. New applicants (and some returning applicants) will be required to have this meeting. This is our opportunity to learn more about your proposed project and to answer any questions you might have about the grant application or process.
Final applications must be submitted through our online system by the 11:59 p.m. on the application deadline listed on the grant calendar. Materials submitted late will not be considered. Once your final application is submitted, you will not be able to make any changes.
Creating an Outstanding Proposal
The strongest grant proposals use both their narrative and their budget to tell a compelling story. Learn how to craft a competitive grant proposal in this blended coaching session and writing workshop. Ideal for anyone in the process of applying for an NJCH grant, but open to anyone who wants to learn how to write an effective grant proposal.
February 20 – North Jersey – East Orange Public Library
February 25 – South Jersey – Maple Shade Township Municipal Complex
September 17 – South Jersey
September 22 – North Jersey
Connecting with Your Audience
Ready to share information about your public humanities project with current and potential audiences? Determining the best way(s) to share information can be a challenge. We’ll explore how to make decisions about target audiences, outreach best practices, and more.
April 16 – North Jersey
April 21 – South Jersey
Humanities Program Models
The humanities help us explore the human experience…but how? Learn about models for great humanities programs – from exhibitions to discussion programs to community collaborations –from NJCH program staff and successful grantees.
May 19 – South Jersey
November 19 – North Jersey
Setting Goals and Tracking Progress
Effective evaluation comes down to clearly identifying your program’s goals from the beginning and designing effective ways to track your progress towards achieving them. Learn techniques for doing both at this workshop.
June 18 – Central Jersey
Applying for a NJCH Grant
Learn about NJCH’s grant program and what makes a competitive proposal at this informational workshop. Come with a program idea and you’ll leave with the start of a proposal!
August 20 – Central Jersey
Interested in bringing a NJCH workshop to your community? Contact us for more information about hosting. Minimum of 10 participants required.
Please note: Organizations can apply for either Incubation or Action Grants during each grant round.
Intent to Apply: September 1, 2019 – September 15, 2019
Drafts accepted: Through October 7, 2019
Application Deadline: October 17, 2019
Incubation Award Notification: By December 28, 2019
Action Award Notification: By January 31, 2020
Projects Begin: Within 3 months of award notification
Intent to Apply: February 1, 2020 – February 15, 2020
Drafts accepted: Through March 9, 2020
UPDATED Application Deadline: March 31, 2020
Incubation Award Notification: By May 29, 2020
Action Award Notification: By June 30, 2020
Projects Begin: Within 3 months of award notification