Help Support Michigan Humanities

Michigan Humanities Organizations Pandemic Emergency Grants (H.O.P.E.)

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Michigan Humanities is providing emergency CARES Act funding to museums, libraries, archives, historic sites, and other humanities-focused nonprofits impacted by the pandemic throughout Michigan. Michigan H.O.P.E. Grants of up to $10,000 are available to provide general operating support with an emphasis on maintaining personnel.

Final Report Instructions

An information meeting about Michigan H.O.P.E. Grant Final Reports was held on Wednesday, July 29. View a recording of the final report instructions here.

Application Guidelines


  • The last day to submit an application is Thursday, May 14, 2020.

Eligible Applicants

  • The applicant organization must be a nonprofit authorized to operate in the state of Michigan. The organization need not be incorporated and may be a public agency. Individuals are not eligible
  • Applicant organizations must have a DUNS number

By law and on principle, Michigan Humanities prohibits discrimination in its funded projects whether on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, sexual orientation, or physical challenges.


  • Applicants may apply for up to $10,000 in Michigan H.O.P.E grant funding
  • No matching funds are required for Michigan H.O.P.E. grants
  • Actual amount awarded might be less than amount requested and will be determined by the MI H.O.P.E. grant review committee

Eligible/Ineligible Expenses

MI H.O.P.E. grant funds MAY be used for:

General Operating Support Including:

  • Salaries
  • Fringe Benefits
  • Rent/Mortgage Payments
  • Utilities

MI H.O.P.E. grant funds MAY NOT be used for:

  • Promotion of a particular political, religious, or ideological point of view
  • Advocacy of a particular program of social or political action
  • Support of specific public policies or legislation
  • Lobbying
    Purchase of land or facilities, construction or renovation
  • Overlapping project costs with any other pending or approved application(s) for federal funding
  • Projects that fall outside of the humanities (including the creation or performance of art; creative writing, autobiographies, memoirs, and creative nonfiction; and empirically based social science research or policy studies)

Michigan H.O.P.E. Grants Deadline and Timeline

  • Applications will be reviewed on a weekly basis beginning the week of April 27, 2020.
  • The weekly deadline for grant applications is Thursday at 5 p.m. Applications received by 5 p.m. on Thursdays will be reviewed the following week.
  • Organizations will receive an award notification within two weeks of submitting an application
  • Awards will be made once an electronically signed grant agreement is returned to Michigan Humanities

Sample “Thank You” letter:

Sample Legislator Thank You Letter

The Honorable (Governor/Senator/Representative)
City, State, Zip

Dear Governor/Senator/Represenative:

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the recent grant award of $XX from Michigan Humanities made possible by the National Endowment for the Humanities through the federal CARES Act legislation.

Your support will allow us to (Summarize the impact of the emergency funding here. Include if you were able to retain staff, re-employ furloughed employees, maintain a building, preserve collections, provide virtual programming, etc.)

Our organization’s mission is (insert mission statement here). We would invite you to learn more about the work we do in our community by exploring our website (insert address here) or follow us on social media (insert social media links here). Your support will allow us to continue this work, and accommodate our community’s needs. If you have any questions, we would welcome you to contact our (Executive Director/President/CEO/Director) (Insert name here) at (insert email address here) or by phone at (insert phone number here).

Thank you again for your support!



For questions about MI H.O.P.E. Grants, please contact James Nelson, Director of Grants, at


If you are an organization researching other funding opportunities we would like to recommend the following resources:

This table of national resources was put together by the Arts Action Fund. It details CARES Act funding opportunities:

This page from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) details funding opportunities available through June 12, 2020:
Click here


Funding for Michigan H.O.P.E. Grants has been provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act economic stabilization plan. 


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