Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Native American Language-Immersion Program Grants Available

First Nations Development Institute (First Nations) is accepting applications for grants under its Native Language Immersion Initiative (NLII). First Nations will award about 12 grants of up to $90,000 each to build the capacity of and directly support Native language-immersion and culture-retention programs.

This Request for Proposals (RFP) is for the first year of this three-year initiative. Similar RFPs will be conducted in each of the next two years. Under NLII, First Nations is seeking to build a dialogue and a community of practice around Native language-immersion programs and consensus on and momentum for Native language programs. The effort is made possible through funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Lannan Foundation, Kalliopeia Foundation and the NoVo Foundation. The initiative includes American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian language programs.

The full RFP can be found here: It contains information on eligibility, the application process, grant requirements, selection criteria, allowable activities and more. The application deadline is March 23, 2018. Eligibility is limited to U.S.-based tribal government programs, tribal 7871 entities, Native-controlled nonprofit organizations, and Native-controlled community organizations with a fiscal sponsor.

First Nations will host two optional, informational Question & Answer webinars for interested applicants prior to the application deadline. These Q&A webinars will provide interested applicants with information about the Native Language Immersion Initiative, eligibility criteria, allowable grant activities, and NLII grant requirements. During the webinars, First Nations will also discuss specific questions in the grant application and sample responses. Attendees are encouraged to ask questions they may have about the NLII and this funding opportunity.

Participation in these webinars is NOT mandatory, but applicants are strongly encouraged to register for and attend one or both of them.

• February 7, 2018, 1 p.m. Mountain Time (1 hour) - Register at

• February 8, 2018, 11 a.m. Mountain Time (1 hour) - Register at

There are currently about 150 Native languages spoken in the U.S., many of them spoken only by a small number of elders. Without intervention, many of these languages are expected to become extinct within the next 50 to 100 years, which means a significant loss of cultural heritage. These grants can support curriculum development, technology access, and recruitment and training of teachers. Language retention and revitalization programs have been recognized as providing key benefits to Native American communities by boosting educational achievement and student retention rates. They also support community identity, Native systems of kinship, and management of community, cultural and natural resources.

Through this new initiative, First Nations seeks to stem the loss of Indigenous languages and cultures by supporting new generations of Native American language speakers, and establishing infrastructure and models for Native language-immersion programs that may be replicated in other communities.


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