National Park Service announces availability of new civil rights grants


The National Park Service (NPS) opened the application period for new grants to preserve and highlight the sites and stories related to the African American struggle for equality in the 20th Century. Congress appropriated $8.0 million for this new grant program in FY 2016.

“This year the National Park Service is marking 100 years as America’s storyteller by finding new ways to provide Americans a more complete history of our country as we enter our second century of stewardship,” said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis. “Through the African American Civil Rights Grant Program the National Park Service will enlist the support and expertise of state and local governments and non-profit organizations to educate and inspire a new, diverse generation of citizens who must continue our nation’s march toward a more perfect union,” Jarvis said.

The grants are funded by the Historic Preservation Fund and administered by the NPS. The competitive grant program will provide funding to states, tribes, local governments, and non-profit organizations. Funding will support a broad range of planning, development, and research projects for historic sites associated with African American civil rights in the 20th century. Possible projects include surveys and documentation, interpretation and education, oral histories, architectural services, historic structure reports, planning, and bricks and mortar preservation.

A 2008 NPS study, Civil Rights in America, A Framework for Identifying Significant Sites, will serve as the principle reference for grant applicants to determine the appropriateness of proposed projects and properties.

Who may apply?— States, territories, federally-recognized tribes, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiian Organizations, local governments (including Certified Local Governments), non-profit organizations, including private non-profit historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs); note that HBCUs need to apply in partnership with an eligible recipient.

How do I apply?— Applications must be submitted using Search in for Funding Opportunity #P16AS00485, under Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number 15.904 or African American Civil Rights Grants.

When is the deadline for applications?— Applications must be submitted by 11:59 p.m. EDT Friday, October 14, 2016. If the project is funded, applicants should expect to be able to begin work no sooner than January 2017.

For questions about the grant program and application, contact the NPS at or 202-354-2020.