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Announcing 2024 EMS grants

Mass Humanities establishes a new storytelling grant focused on climate change projects.

Photo of people engaging with exhibit materials at the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refure.

Mass Humanities is thrilled to announce upcoming opportunities for its 2024 grant season. Application materials for Expand Massachusetts Stories (EMS) grants are now available on our website. The application window opens February 5.

EMS grants support projects that collect, interpret, and share stories about the Commonwealth. Special consideration is given to humanities programming, events, and creative works that emphasize the voices and experiences of residents that too often go unrecognized, or have been excluded from public conversation and public history.

This year, Mass Humanities is offering a new grant track for projects that explore different aspects of climate change. Applicants are eligible to receive up to $20,000 for projects that illuminate community knowledge, experiences, and values in response to the climate crisis. Organizations interested in applying for a grant can now choose between the Climate Change Track, Advancing Equity Track, and Open Track.

“We believe that the humanities are crucial to confronting the complex challenges facing every human and every community,” said Brian Boyles, Executive Director of Mass Humanities. “At this pivotal time in our nation, Mass Humanities supports storytellers and changemakers who bring people together to listen, share and imagine a better future. As we celebrate our 50th anniversary in 2024, we look forward to hearing their ideas and celebrating their work.” 

People look at a display board at a forum event.
American Civility Forum

Mass Humanities launched the EMS initiative in 2021 with the support of Mass Cultural Council and the Barr Foundation. Since then, Mass Humanities has distributed more than $1.8 million to projects across the state that included audio tours, documentary films, oral histories, public events, and archival research.

“Every creative community has a compelling story to tell,” said Michael J. Bobbitt, Executive Director, Mass Cultural Council. “Today’s EMS grant recipients are about to inspire us all through these conversations. I cannot wait to experience, learn and engage with them. Mass Cultural Council is proud to partner with and support Mass Humanities in this effort, which ensures these types of important dialogue happen in Massachusetts.” 

In 2023, Mass Humanities awarded $751,357 in EMS grants to 42 cultural nonprofit organizations from Cape Cod to the Berkshires. The majority of funds went to organizations receiving their first Mass Humanities grant, while people of color lead 67% of the supported projects, and 65% of the organizations had annual operating budgets of less than $300,000.

Learn more about our grant programs.

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