St. John Valley

Acadian Heritage Council makes grants available

MADAWASKA, Maine — The Maine Acadian Heritage Council is beginning its annual grant process and this year will distribute almost $50,000 of its funds received from the National Park Service in the form of grants to its participating members, St. John Valley teachers, non-profit organizations and individuals. 

There are four different grants available. This year there is no minimum award limit for each of the grant areas.

       The Heritage Trail Guide Grant is earmarked for St. John Valley member museums and historical sites.  This grant supports hiring, training, and retaining personnel at local museums and historical sites. At these sites, hired personnel will be available to welcome visitors, bus tours, and school groups throughout the summer months.

The Preservation Grant was developed to help historic sites and member societies in the St. John Valley. This award is specifically to help historical societies preserve and repair historic buildings, artifacts and documents. This is a 50-50 matching grant which means that the historical societies have to provide 50% of the value of the project submitted. The 50% match can be money, donated materials, and in-kind work.

     The Acadian Heritage Speakers and Performers Grant is intended to support local festivals, organizations, or individuals hoping to invite Acadian musicians, scholars, and performers to the St. John Valley. In seeking to “advance and maintain the cause of Acadian life, culture, history, and art in the state of Maine,” MAHC has developed a program to support local speakers and performances at festivals and other venues in the St. John Valley. This grant is specifically for experts in Acadian/St. John Valley history, culture, music, and traditional arts, to be performed at public events in the St. John Valley. 

The Education Resource Development Grant supports projects that teach Acadian heritage, language, and culture to residents of the St. John Valley. These grants will help bring Acadian culture, history, language, and art to the classroom or other public areas, while fostering stewardship which will, in turn, preserve this unique heritage. Proposals will explore Maine Acadian themes such as traditional Acadian folklore, cuisine, language, music, dance, ethnography, history, material culture, architecture, and historic and cultural landscapes. 

           Appointed committees will evaluate completed applications for eligibility and rank them for funding in accordance with the following criteria: application completeness, administrative capability, community support, and project narrative, in addition to information specific to each type of grant requested.  A general accounting of spending is requested once the grant funds have been used. The council also requires that any publicity for the tourist activities at the site of the grant recipients will name the Maine Acadian Heritage Council as a financial supporter of the activities.

     The Council reserves the right to adjust the amount of each respective award depending on the availability of funds and feasibility of funding certain projects at less than the amount requested. A public announcement of the awarded grants is made at the Council’s annual dinner and meeting.  This year’s annual dinner will be held May 17th at the Lakeview Restaurant.

      The deadline to return applications is Jan. 31. For applications, email maineacadianheritage@gmail.com or call 728-6826.

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