Home / Latest News / Humanities for All Quick Grants Support Community, History, & Storytelling throughout California

Humanities for All Quick Grants Support Community, History, & Storytelling throughout California

A scene from CAMBODIA TOWN THRIVES, a documentary film directed by Brandon Soun. The film will be part of the forthcoming event, "We Are Long Beach: Our Stories, Our Future,” a free in-person film screening and panel discussion seeking to elevate community engagement and strengthen solidarity around multicultural issues that are impacting BIPOC community members in Long Beach, CA. Photo credit: Photo courtesy of Visual Communications.

June 10, 2022
For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Cherie Hill, Communications Manager, chill@calhum.org 
Image / Courtesy of Visual Communications from “We Are Long Beach: Our Stories, Our Future”.

(Oakland, CA) — California Humanities is proud to announce that nineteen public humanities grantees will receive $92,300 in funding through the Humanities for All Quick Grant program. This round of selected projects significantly strives to capture the often-unexamined histories, first-person accounts, unique stories, and experiences of Californians.  

Many of the awarded projects in this grant cycle draw on the humanities to grapple with the lasting impacts of historical injustices that have affected their communities. For example, “African American and Asian American Navy Stories” and “History of Asian Americans in the Navy,” organized by the Aircraft Carrier Hornet Foundation in Alameda, will build on the awareness and respect for those African and Asian Americans who served in the Navy from the Revolutionary War to the present and explore local connections to these histories. Their exhibit will introduce important Californians and other historical figures who made groundbreaking achievements in diversity, equity, and inclusion and often go unrecognized.  

Other projects examine the recent and historical events that have affected their regions, such as “Speaking of the Dixie Fire: Students of Plumas County on the Fire that Changed Their Lives.” Occurring in Pluma County, this project gives the students of Plumas County (k-12 and college) a platform to share their stories of living through the Dixie Fire and reflect on the personal and community effects of this fire. 

“We are honored to support access to the history and stories that stem from Californians throughout the state,” shares California Humanities President & CEO Julie Fry. “The humanities’ approaches illustrated in this cohort provide important tools for us to understand the past and its impact on the present.” 

The Humanities for All Quick grant is a competitive application that provides up to $5,000 to support small-scale locally initiated public humanities projects. See a complete description of awarded projects below. 

Projects Awarded Spring 2022 

In addition to continuing consideration of all eligible project applications on any topic, using any mode or format, and reaching any public audience, California Humanities designated three specific funding focus areas for Humanities for All Quick Grants: Youth Voices (denoted by “*”), Arts & Humanities (denoted by “+”). 

We Are Long Beach: Our Stories, Our Future + 
Visual Communications, Long Beach 
Project Director: Eseel Borlasa 
In collaboration with other community organizations within the Long Beach area, Visual Communications will present a free virtual and in-person event in the summer of 2022. This project seeks to build community engagement and strengthen solidarity around issues impacting BIPOC community members in Long Beach, CA. The in-person event will provide three short documentary screenings accompanied by a community forum that will engage in meaningful multi-ethnic dialogue that uplifts personal stories, elevates the local neighborhood issues, and empowers civic engagement. 

Sobrevivir One-Day Symposium and Community Quilt-making Workshops + 
Vincent Price Art Museum Foundation, Los Angeles 
Project Director: Steven Wong 
“Sobrevivir One-Day Symposium and Community Quilt-making Workshops” will feature a one-day symposium and the implementation of four months of quilt-making workshops presented at the Vincent Prince Art Museum in fall 2022. These programs will augment the public exhibition by artist Phung Hyunh titled “Sobrevivir, Healing Through Art and Recognizing the History of Coerced Sterilization.” The work documents Hyunh’s public/community artworks commissioned to honor over 240 Latina women who were involuntarily sterilized at LA County, USC Medical Center. This program traces convergences of race, class, and gender that surface through California’s histories of coerced sterilization to inform conversations around contemporary reproductive health/justice within communities of color and practices that governments, communities, and individuals deploy to repair systemic, generational trauma. 

 
Speaking of the Dixie Fire: Students of Plumas County on the Fire that Changed Their Lives + 
Pachuca Productions/Las Pachucas Films, Plumas County 
Project Director: Tina Terrazas 
Pachuca Productions will present “Speaking of the Dixie Fire: Students of Plumas County on the Fire that Changed Their Lives,” a program created to give the students of Plumas County (k-12 and college) a platform to share their stories of living through the Dixie Fire. Pachuca Productions will facilitate two days of programming at the Town Hall Theatre in Quincy and the Taylorsville Historic Hall with free/donation admission. In addition, programming will be live-streamed on the Plumas Arts Facebook page. This program will also include the participation of an art therapist to help students work through issues that come up in generating their creative works about the Dixie Fire. 

 
Mapping Queer Fresno: Community History Talks and Digital Mapping of Fresno County + 
Community Link, Fresno 
Project Director, Katherine Fobear 
“Mapping Queer Fresno: Community History Talks and Digital Mapping of Fresno County” will consist of a public lecture series and digital mapping project focused on the LGBTQ2+ history of Fresno County. Invited LGBTQ2+ community speakers and researchers will focus on key points of history, geography, and cultural knowledge representative of the diverse LGBTQ2+ history of Fresno. These talks will be digitally recorded and linked to locations on a digital map on the Qistory website, with public events beginning in the summer of 2022. 

 
Agri-CULTURED: Reflections on our Local Food Community by Land and by  
Hand + 
Petaluma Arts Council, Petaluma 
Project Director: Carin Jacobs 
Petaluma Art Center’s (PAC) “Agri-CULTURED” exhibit will run from August through mid-September 2022. “Agri-CULTURED” will draw on the uniting power of food by reaching out to segments of Petaluma’s communities that do not ordinarily engage with the arts. “Agri-CULTURED” is rooted in a distinct sense of place. The exhibition reflects upon the current natural challenges of drought, wildfires, and pandemic that govern much of Petaluma’s food culture and economy today. This project will explore novel farming methods, the unprecedented challenges of climate change, inventive approaches to culinary-based enterprise, and the newly acquired tastes of Petaluma’s changing population. 

 
Olongapo Disco: Archiving Joy Across the Diaspora from 1950 to the Future + 
Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation, San Diego 
Project Director: Angelica Tolentino 
“Olongapo Disco” is an exhibit and participatory series that will debut in June 2022 at the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation.  “Olongapo Disco” will showcase the diverse ways that community members create and share joy through an array of artistic solutions among community members in Southeast San Diego and Olongapo, Philippines. Throughout this project, participating artists and community members will explore the question: What are joy technologies from Olongapo and San Diego that we need to remember and create to survive and thrive? These considerations will be explored and celebrated through a series of public workshops. In addition, local Pilipinx artists, DJs, and historians’ work will be compiled in a communal archive of Pilipinx joy technologies, including funk/disco, fashion, dance, and environmental/political/social activism from Olongapo and San Diego from 1950 to the present. 

 
Home Gardens: Photographic Discovery * 
Riverside County Library System, Riverside 
Project Director: Anna Bekker 
Launching in the summer of 2022, Riverside County-area teens will take inspiration from award-winning local author Isabel Quintero’s graphic biography “Photographic: The Life of Graciela Iturbide.” Through an author’s talk, a professional photography workshop, a photography exhibit, and an electronic chapbook publication, the organizers of this project seek to preserve and share the image of the Home Gardens neighborhood as seen by the diverse group of young people who live here. By exploring their neighborhood through photography, teens will participate in community building, learn to articulate their sense of self better and find their original voice. In addition, photographic Discovery will increase visibility of Home Gardens Hispanic teens’ perspectives within the local context of Riverside County. 

Bronzeville: Crossing bridges and honoring our shared past + 
Casa 0101 Inc, Los Angeles 
Project Director: Emmanuel Deleage 
“Bronzeville: Crossing bridges and honoring our shared past” is a month-long series consisting of four community forums and a curated historical retrospective exhibit that will highlight the significance of the little-known cross-cultural history of the communities of Boyle Heights and Little Tokyo in Los Angeles. The forums will be multi-disciplinary, with musical and cultural presentations, dialogues with community members, guest speakers, and more. In addition to recognizing the historical contributions of the diverse members of this community’s past, this project hopes to educate and inspire the same community in its present incarnation. Programming will begin in May of 2022. 

 
1619 Speaks: Anthology and Show + 
Community Literature Initiative, Los Angeles 
Project Director: Hiram Sims 
Community Literature Initiative (CLI) will present the “1619 Speaks” project, which will result in a virtual gathering and anthology that aims to celebrate African American poets. CLI alumni and current students will be selected to read a poem from an African American poet that influenced them and write a poem on what that influence meant to them. During the week-long virtual event, five poets will read their tribute and poem on seven selected nights, resulting in a published anthology. Programming will launch in June 2022. 

 
Filipinos of South Bay Exhibit 
Pasacat Inc, San Diego 
Project Director: Anamaria Cabato 
The Filipinos of South Bay Exhibit (FOSBE) project is a collaboration with PASACAT Philippine Performing Arts Company and the Filipino American National Historical Society (FANHS)-San Diego, produced in partnership with the Chula Vista Public Library and Friends of the Chula Vista Heritage Museum. “Filipinos of South Bay” will provide the stories and photos of Filipinos who shaped their communities by exploring the organizations, business, education, military, places of remembrance, and other themes of sports, innovators, technology, government, and the arts. The exhibit will be installed at the Chula Vista Public Library from October 2022 to December 2023. 

 
Home/Land: Farmworker Perspectives + 
Santa Paula Art Museum, Santa Paula 
Project Director: Margaret Phelps 
Santa Paula Art Museum’s “Home/Land: Farm Worker Voices” presents a platform for farmworker voices by providing opportunities for farmworkers and families to create visual responses to topics of identity, home, belonging, land use, and housing security and featuring the resultant imagery in both public art installations and at the Santa Paula Art Museum concurrent with the 14th annual “Art About Agriculture,” exhibition. In addition, a panel discussion will be held for deeper community reflection, including humanities experts, community leaders, and farmworker housing advocates to reflect on the artworks created and their relation to the more extensive exhibit, relevant discourses, and community impact. Programming will begin in August 2022 and run through January 2023. 

 
Tenderloin Museum’s California Labor School Project + 
Uptown Tenderloin Inc, San Francisco 
Project Director: Alex Spoto 
Tenderloin Museum’s “California Labor School Project” is an exhibit on the California Labor School (CLS) history organized with SFSU’s Labor Archives and Research Center and a program series that utilizes CLS’ curriculum as a frame for participatory arts activities. Active between 1942-1957, CLS offered programs to analyze social, economic, and political questions in light of the present world struggle against fascism. With roots in the TL and remarkably diverse for its time, CLS is an ideal subject to promote the Tenderloin’s history and character and study how communities organize, knowledge is shared, and social division is overcome. The programming is from July through September 2022. 

 
NOT WORKING: Essential, Fired, and Forgotten workers in the time of Covid + 
Asian Story Theater Inc, San Diego 
Project Director: Kent Brisby 
Asian Story Theater will lead a troika of arts producers in developing and producing a new musical play: “NOT WORKING: Essential, Fired, and Forgotten Workers in the time of Covid-19.” This project will produce the new musical “NOT WORKING,” doubling as a catalyst for discussions relating to working as an Asian American, Latino American, or African American from 2020 to 2023: before, during, and after Covid-19, developed in partnership with Teatro Máscara Mágica and the San Diego Black Ensemble Theatre Company. Participating directors will build on relationships with community organizations to identify stories, themes, and interviewees and rotate hosting a public discussion immediately after each performance. This project will culminate in a week of performances in the Lyceum Theatre or other downtown venue in October 2022; each performance will be followed by a hosted discussion of a topic or theme in the show. Before these centralized performances, there will be three previews in community centers around the city, plus three musical excerpts incorporated into other community events hosted by development partners. 

 
La Raiz Magazine Poetry Workshops & Publication + 
School of Arts and Culture at MHP, San Jose 
Project Director: Elizabeth Jimenez Montelongo 
“La Raiz Magazine Poetry Workshops & Publication” will provide interactive arts and literary engagement experiences to the community through culturally relevant bilingual workshops and a publication that amplifies the voices of BIPOC and women. La Raiz Magazine, in partnership with local organizations, will provide free poetry workshops to the public. Participating community members will receive free support to write poetry via guided, interactive poetry workshops that include prompts, samples, and opportunities to share their work. Programming will be accessible virtually and in-person between May 2022 and April 2023. 

 
Chicana Revolution 
California State University Los Angeles Auxiliary Services Inc, Los Angeles 
Project Director: Dionne Espinoza Ph.D. 
“Chicana Revolution,” organized by Dionne Espinoza Ph.D., will put the voices of Mexican American women at the center. A series of virtual and/or face-to-face dialogues and multimedia presentations dedicated to sharing the underrepresented stories of the mujeres (women) who formed student and community-based collectives in the seventies at universities and community sites throughout California will be presented. The dialogues will be accompanied by slide shows with archival photographs and documents from the time, recitation of poetry or short plays, and/or songs. Programming will be held in May 2022, October 2022, and March 2023. 

 
African American and Asian American Navy Stories + 
Aircraft Carrier Hornet Foundation, Alameda 
Project Director: Anthony Wilson 
The USS Hornet Museum’s “History of African Americans in the Navy” and “History of Asian Americans in the Navy” will develop permanent exhibition spaces with rotating artifacts and interactive content sharing the stories and history of African and Asian Americans within the US Navy. This exhibition will build on the awareness and respect for those African and Asian Americans who served in the Navy from the Revolutionary War to the present. In addition, these exhibits will introduce important historical figures who made groundbreaking achievements in diversity, equity, and inclusion. Exhibit receptions will also be held to tell these stories and increase awareness beginning in May 2022. 
 
King of The Yees – Audience and Community Engagement Programs + 
Sierra Madre Playhouse, Sierra Madre 
Project Director: Beryl Tsang 
Sierra Madre Playhouse (SMP) will further its mission to stimulate civic engagement through live theater by producing “King of the Yees” (KoTY) by Lauren Yee, directed by Tim Dang (running from May 20 – June 12). KoTY, based on Yee’s relationship with her father, reflects on intergenerational differences in immigrant communities and the value of ethnic ties in a changing society. This program seeks to contextualize the production of KoTY with five engagement programs that address the cultural, economic, and geographical transformation of Chinese American enclaves from LA to the San Gabriel Valley. 
 
Immigrant Voices LIVE: A Storyshare Project Bridging Angel Island’s Immigrant Descendants and Current-Day Immigrants + 
Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation, San Francisco 
Project Director: Edward Tepporn 
Building upon Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation’s (AIISF) existing collection of 250 oral histories, the “Immigrant Voices LIVE” project will incorporate digital storytelling to diversify our nation’s narratives about Asians and immigrants. This project will include in-person and online training to support community members in sharing their personal/family stories related to immigration through writing, video, or audio. Submissions will be featured in a permanent multimedia exhibit in the Angel Island Immigration Museum and AIISF’s online gallery in October 2022. 
 
Mission Love + 
Conscious Youth Media Crew, San Francisco 
Project Director: Debra Koffler 
“Mission Love” will screen rare 16mm films from the Ray Balberan Mission MediArts archive (RBMMA), accompanied by collective storytelling in late 2022 at Brava Theater in San Francisco’s Mission District. The RBMMA is a unique collection of footage from the 1970s-80s shot by Mission MediArts, a filmmaker collective of working-class Latino and African American students, artists, and activists. They create groundbreaking community television chronicling life in the Mission and showcase their cultural heritage from an authentic insider’s perspective. Footage includes the Mission’s early mural arts movement, lowriders, the local poetry scene, and activism around farmworker’s rights, police brutality, and family life. 
 To learn more about the Humanities for All grant programs, click here. Applications for the next round of Humanities for All Quick Grants are due October 17, 2022. 

About California Humanities:
California Humanities, a nonprofit partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities, promotes the humanities—focused on ideas, conversation and learning—as relevant, meaningful ways to understand the human condition and connect people to each other in order to help strengthen California. California Humanities has provided grants and programs across the state since 1975. To learn more, visit calhum.org, or like and follow on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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