The WSHS Research Center in Tacoma. Courtesy of the WSHS.

The Washington State Historical Society (WSHS) has announced a new program that awards small grants to heritage organizations looking to fund paid internships supporting diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives.

The Diversity in Local History (DLH) program’s first round of grants was approved in October 2021, aimed at projects set to start in January. Those who are currently in community college, are undergraduate/graduate students, or are recent graduates now can apply for internships here. They also can apply directly through the organizations that are receiving grants. All 11 are listed here

“The Washington State Historical Society provides mentoring, training, and resources to heritage organizations state-wide. Our DLH grant program enables these organizations to take concrete steps toward addressing institutional bias. We are grateful to the Washington State Legislature for approving our request to fund this program,” Jennifer Kilmer, director of the WSHS, said in a press release.

According to the release, grants will be distributed on a reimbursement basis, which necessitates that organizations must have enough funds on hand to pay the interns consistently before receiving grant money to replenish those dollars. The grant process will occur annually and is open to all nonprofits, tribal organizations, and local Washington state governmental entities that have a heritage-based mission, according to the release.

“This program serves at the intersection of an organization’s desire to diversify the stories they tell with their capacity to make it happen,” Andre Jimenez, DEI specialist at WSHS, said in the release.

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