First Nations originally launched the Native Language Immersion Initiative (NLII) in 2017 as a three-year project to build on longtime efforts to support the revitalization and perpetuation of Native languages. The NLII program is designed specifically to build the capacity of and support Native language immersion education programs in tribal communities. With generous support from several foundations and numerous individual donors across the U.S., the NLII program has continued beyond the initial investment. Support for the 2024 grant cycle is made possible through funding from the Sunderland Foundation, Pendleton Woolen Mills, Inc., and the CSAA Insurance Group (a AAA Insurer) and through a generous gift from the Diane Mott Estate.
During this funding cycle, First Nations will award 10 grants ranging from $45,000 to $75,000 to build the capacity of and directly support Native-controlled nonprofit organizations and tribal government programs actively advancing Native language immersion programs.
Language is the foundation through which traditions are deeply rooted and values – such as respect for elders, community, and the Earth – are taught. Research has shown that learning a language increases the social, emotional, intellectual, cultural, and physical development of children. Fortified by learning their Native language, Native youth build a positive cultural identity and resiliency to face life’s challenges.
Since the NLII program began, more than 30 Native organizations and tribes have received over $4 million in funding to build the capacity of and directly support their Native language immersion programs. In addition to providing direct financial resources, this initiative seeks to build a dialogue and community of practice among Native language immersion grantees and momentum for supporting Native language programs.
Funding under this grant will support capacity-building activities designed to improve and enhance the language immersion program’s ability to achieve its mission. This may include curriculum development, technology access, instructional courses and materials, mentorships, teacher training and other kinds of organizational infrastructure.
The grant period for this funding opportunity is May 1, 2024, to April 30, 2025.
Grant Award Ceiling
Total requested funds in project budgets under this funding opportunity should not exceed $75,000.
Grant Submission Deadline
Applications are due MONDAY, MARCH 4, 2024, no later than 5 pm Mountain Time.
First Nations recognizes that some of our most rural and remote applicants may have limited access to high-speed internet. Any exceptions to use of the online system must be made at least two weeks in advance of the application deadline by submitting a request to email@example.com. Please include your name, organization, contact information and the name of the RFP for which you are applying. If you do not have access to email you can call our office at (303) 774-7836 and ask to speak with a member of the Grantmaking Department.
Unfortunately, First Nations cannot make any emergency exceptions to application deadlines. Partial applications, incomplete applications due to user error, or faxed/emailed/mailed applications will not be considered unless they have received prior approval.