The Humanities Help People Every Day

Communities across the nation depend upon state and jurisdictional humanities councils for critical support for their cultural infrastructure and to help make sense of complex issues facing our nation. Humanities councils strengthen communities, build bridges, and preserve the stories that need to be told. They provide vitally important grants to local organizations that meet community needs, and free, lifelong learning that gives context, sparks curiosity and creates connection.

6,576 Partnerships

Enriching local council programs across the nation

3,730 Council Grants

Totaling $38.6 million in 2023 funding

Doubling the Impact

For each dollar of federal funding received, the nation’s humanities councils double its impact on average, with a matching ratio of 2 to 1. By supporting cultural programming and community institutions like museums and libraries, humanities councils enrich the quality of life. Councils also help make communities more attractive to businesses and advance a skilled, educated workforce.

  • Humanities councils deliver high-quality grassroots programming that connects people across differences locally and statewide, in both rural and urban communities.
  • Councils support innovative programs that help veterans reintegrate into their communities.
  • Councils promote knowledge and appreciation of local, regional, and national history and heritage by supporting discussion forums, exhibits, documentary films, online encyclopedias, and oral history projects.
  • Councils foster early childhood education through family literacy programs that support children’s future educational and economic success, strengthen family ties, and increase parents’ job prospects by improving their reading skills.
  • Councils promote K-12 education by providing online resources for students, summer institutes, weekend workshops, and other professional development programs for teachers.
  • Council programming excels at exploring, understanding, and sustaining our environment. They help communities prepare for emergencies and respond when relief is quickly needed.

Current Advocacy Efforts

FY 2024 Advocacy

The Federation is urging congress to provide robust funding in FY 2025 for the NEH so that state and jurisdictional humanities councils can continue to support local and community cultural organizations nationwide. These funds help provide resources to bring communities together by strengthening communities, building bridges, supporting teachers and learners, and preserving our stories across the nation.

During the current FY25 appropriations process, we are working to realize a meaningful investment for the humanities community.

United States Capitoll Building in Washington DC in Autumn with reflecting pool
Recent posts
No posts found.

Humanities on The Hill

While our members and the Federation advocate throughout the year, our March Humanities on the Hill is the only time where the public humanities council community comes together in Washington, D.C., to collectively advocate for federal funding for the NEH. The NEH supports humanities organizations and scholars nationwide, and the Federal/State Partnership, which is an office within NEH, directly supports the humanities councils.

Princeton University, NJ, USA. Shot on Oct 25, 2018. Shot at dawn, the long cobblestone paths leading up to the Princeton square has an eerie quiet that can stimulate any academic.
Recent posts
No posts found.

Want humanities advocacy updates delivered directly to your inbox?

To stay informed of the latest humanities advocacy news, participate in our Advocacy Forum and subscribe to This Week on the Hill updates (members) or sign up to receive the Monthly Federation Update (everyone).

Federation Advocacy Tools


Use the Federation’s customized grassroots and congressional advocacy software to reach your legislators.

Advocacy Forum for Members

Log into the Members Portal to join the Advocacy Forum and find what you need to advocate throughout the year, including webinars from veteran humanities advocates, case-making materials, and the latest Hill updates.