The humanities are the genie in the bottle of the world. They are to economics what a magic flute is to a cash register, to science what a bird of paradise is to a lab rat, and to most political systems what a disco ball is to a ball and chain. That's why I'm high on Humanities Washington.

Tom Robbins
Author of Even Cowgirls Get the Blues
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Fostering the humanities in local communities with grants to organization to support conversation-based programming throughout the state.

Grants Program Helps Spark Community Conversations Across the State

Humanities Washington grant funds are available to assist local organizations in creating opportunities for their community to come together to discuss important issues using the humanities. Are there topics in your community that resonate or irritate? If so, when and where do your neighbors come together to share their opinions, ideas, hopes, and dreams? If there are already opportunities for dialogue and discussion in your area, we want to help support those continued efforts. If such programs do not exist, we want to support the creation of new opportunities for discussion and dialogue in communities across Washington.

Humanities Washington Offers Three Types of Grants

    • Opportunity Grants: Available year-round to small or rural organizations for public presentations. Opportunity Grants do not require a funding match and organizations may request up to $1,000.
    • Spark Grants: Awarded once per year through a competitive grant process for projects that are based in dialogue and discussion. Spark Grants require a funding match and organizations may request up to $7,500.
    • Washington Stories Fund: Awarded once per year to projects that highlight the little-known stories of a person or group whose contributions add to the cultural richness and health of Washington State. One grant of $5,000 is awarded through a competitive process and projects require a funding match.

What Are the Humanities and Public Humanities Programs?

The humanities are the ideas, questions and disciplines that help us document and interpret the world around us. Whenever you read to a child, view a documentary film, explore another culture, or rethink assumptions or take part in a community conversation, you are experiencing the humanities.

These programs help our communities understand complex social issues through disciplines such as history, literature, and philosophy. They provide a framework for examining how we think, what we value, and what it means to be human. By participating in these programs, we hone skills of inquiry, analysis, reflection, evaluation, and conversation, enriching both our private lives and our communities.

Note: While Humanities Washington does fund humanities projects which interpret art, or use art or artistic performance to begin or enhance a conversation, we do not fund projects focused on the creative and/or performing arts.

For more information, please contact Program Director Ellen Terry by email or call (206) 682-1770 x101. Or sign for our monthly e-news for the latest news about all our programs, including grants.

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