The Native Cultures Fund convenes a committee to make granting decisions twice a year, in spring and fall. Current deadlines for consideration are April 1 and October 15.
NCF grant funding is between $1,000 and $10,000, with most grants falling between $1,000 – $5,000.
Grants can be made to individuals, non-profits, community partnerships, or Tribal Nations. They are made to projects that reflect the transmission of knowledge across generations, based in California Indian culture, art, values, and traditional practices. We define culture in the broadest possible way: As the foodways, languages and cosmologies, ceremony, sacred sites, sports, architecture, arts, teachings and knowledge systems, stories, music, dance, land stewardship, hydrology, maritime traditions, and much more that are indigenous to California.
The Native Cultures Fund serves the area from the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation in the north, to the Paiute Nations in the east and down to Chumash territory in the south.
Grants are not made to support capacity of large organizations, for economic development, or for projects not rooted in California tribal cultures.
How to Apply
Download: The Native Cultures Fund application (.pdf)
*Please ensure you download the file before you begin to complete it.
If you have trouble with the PDF version of the application, please contact the NCF team to assist you.
The application can be returned via email, in PDF formatting, to firstname.lastname@example.org
or, via postal mail to Native Cultures Fund, postmarked by due date to:
Native Cultures Fund
363 Indianola Rd
Bayside, CA 95524
Inquiries about the grantmaking process or for assistance, please reach out to our team at email@example.com or 707.267.9906
Questions about projects and ideas are welcome, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call us any time.
The Decision Makers
NCF Grant and Scholarship decisions are made by committees of California Indian culture bearers from across the 50-county region of California. Committees change each season so many of the cultures we serve can be represented. Committees are made up of three to five people with a balance of gender, age, geographic representation, and cultural expertise. Having grantmakers come from the traditions that we support is integral to the fabric of the Native Cultures Fund. If you would like to serve on a committee or would like to nominate someone who has deep knowledge of their own California Native culture and interest in strengthening every California Native community, please email us at email@example.com.
Some of our recent grantees…
- Nuumu Beaded Collar Class led by Cheyenne Stone
- A Food Sovereignty project led by the Clear Lake Pomo Cultural Preservation
- Mewuk Basketry Class led by Jennifer Bates
- Noqsi – The Paxiiwovem Canoe Family Guiding “Star” led by L Frank
- Advocacy and Water Protection led by Save California Salmon
- Wilton Rancheria Restoration Documentation
- Maidu Independent Theater led by Alan Wallace
- Karuk Elk Film Project led by Emilio Tripp
- Gluts project led by Cho-kik Builders
- Sheltering Inspiration led by Heyday Institute
- Mutsun Language Project led by Quirina Geary
- Kai Pomo Jahnoo, a project on language, led by Sherwood Valley Band of Pomo Indians
- Nisenan Language led by Wanda Enos Batchelor
- Southern Sierra Miwuk Ceremonial Cycle
- Roundhouse Maintenance Project
- Arrahi Pa’Pah; returning the Dugout Canoe to the Upriver People led by the Nature Rights Council
- kontadung yiduk, a language project rooted in nature, led by Native Health in Native Hands
- Mak Noono Tiirinikma: Our Language Wakes Up, Chochenyo language project led by the Sogorea Te Land Trust
- The Native Mural Project led by the Eureka Street Art Festival
- The Basics of Dentalium Cape Making led by Marlette Grant Jackson
- Pugwihuu Gathering
- Wintu Village Project led by the NorRel Muk Wintu Nation
- Presentations of Menil and Her Heart and Douk led by Playhouse Arts and Native Women’s Collective
- Cyclical Herbs, a project focused on traditional medicines, led by Ruby Tuttle
- The Yurok Boys and Girls Club led by the Yurok Tribe
- “A K’amt’em Moment” capturing Indigenous knowledge through photography led by Dr. Kishan Lara-Cooper.
- Follow the Smoke gathering led by the California Indian Basketweavers Association
- Nii~-lii~-chvn-dvn Sheslh-‘i~ (sweathouse at the dance grounds) led by the Tolowa Nee-dash Society
- Quartz Valley Indian Reservation Basketry Project
- “Young Lady Dancers” Cultural Class led by Kaleena Stone
- Native language learning flashcards led by Lyn Risling with Heyday Books
- Salinan dictionary led by David ShaulSüsüadüümü Tanagadü
- Construction of the Yurok Blue Creek Ah Pah Village led by Willard Carlson
- Family Language Program led by the Advocates for Indigenous California Language Survival
- Research and creation of Chumash woven feather dance belts led by Leah Mata Fragua
- Resighini Rancheria men’s traditional sweathouse
- Hide Tanning Educational Project led by Warner Mountain Indian Health, Fort Bidwell
- Klamath Sentinels Sculpture Project led by Brian D. Tripp with the Mid Klamath Watershed Counil
- “Stories from Our Past” storytelling collection project in Hoopa led by Judith Surber
- Transmission of Native Arts, Culture, and Traditional Plants led by the Bishop Paiute Tribe
Many of our grantees are doing work that is ceremonial, and therefore private nature.
We respect their traditions and do not ask for photos or share information publicly about their important work.
Ka’m-t’em Photography Project
This project was supported by the Jack Montoya Fund and involved cultural mentorship between generations by creating an opportunity for youth to work with an elder, a photographer, a book chapter author, and the book editors. The mentor photographer and authors guided youth in the process of capturing Indigenous knowledge through photography. To learn more about this work, visit their webpage.