Vermont Humanities

Vermont Humanities Receives $200k from National Endowment for the Humanities for 2023 Flood Recovery Grant Program


MONTPELIER, VT ­­- Vermont Humanities is excited to announce that the National Endowment for the Humanities has awarded the organization a Disaster Recovery Grant of $200,000 for ongoing flood recovery efforts for cultural organizations in the state of Vermont.

This emergency funding is designed to support non-profit organizations impacted by the historic flooding in Vermont as they seek to return to providing cultural or humanities-based programming to their communities. Vermont Humanities has already raised an additional $165,000 from reserve funds and generous individual donors seeking to offer flexible funding in support of the state’s vital community and cultural resources, and this award from the NEH will empower the organization to extend that help further. Donations to the fund are still being accepted, Vermont Humanities intends to award at least $400,000 in grant funding to impacted cultural nonprofits.

“This funding will provide vital support to organizations and institutions impacted by this summer’s flooding that conserve and promote the diverse history and culture of Vermont through educational and artistic activities of all kinds,” read a joint statement from Vermont’s Congressional Delegation, Senator Bernie Sanders, Senator Peter Welch, and Representative Becca Balint. “The humanities are how we understand ourselves and our place in our community – they are an essential part of who we are as Vermonters. We are deeply grateful to Vermont Humanities for their work in distributing these grants and thank the federally funded National Endowment for the Humanities for supporting Vermont through the floods.”

“The events of this past July are the embodiment of the need for a rainy day fund,” noted Vermont Humanities Executive Director Christopher Kaufman Ilstrup.  “On behalf of Vermont’s cultural sector, we extend our gratitude to the NEH, dozens of individual donors, and our Board of Trustees for making this funding available to support libraries, museums, and other cultural organizations impacted by the terrible flooding this summer,” he continued.

“In addition to widespread destruction to innumerable Vermont communities, homes, and businesses, these historic floods also took an immense toll on the state’s museums, libraries, historic sites, and cultural centers, endangering valuable cultural collections, damaging facilities, and closing humanities programs and resources,” said National Endowment for the Humanities Chair Shelly C. Lowe (Navajo). “NEH’s partnership with Vermont Humanities will allow the state’s cultural sector to begin the process of rebuilding.”

To qualify for the program, organizations must apply for assistance through Vermont Humanities and be able to demonstrate physical or economic harm as a result of the severe weather events beginning on July 11, 2023, as well as qualified financial losses that are not covered by insurance, FEMA, or other assistance programs at the time of their application.Under limited circumstances, organizations that were not directly damaged by the flooding but rather are providing recovery support services to cultural organizations, cultural workers, or artists may be eligible for support under this grant program.  Please contact us at to discuss your circumstances if you believe your organization fits in this category.

Applications for the 2023 Floods Cultural Recovery Fund are open now and close on October 31, 2023 or when all funds have been awarded. To learn more and apply, visit


To make a contribution to the Fund, visit or mail a check to Vermont Humanities, 11 Loomis Street, Montpelier, VT 05602.  Note “Flood Recovery Fund” on your donation.




The Floods Cultural Recovery Fund has been made possible in part by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Democracy demands wisdom.

Vermont Humanities*** September 19, 2023