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The WORLD
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July 2021 COUPONS

Vermont Humanities and

Vermont Arts Council to

Distribute $1.2 Million

to Vermont Cultural

Organizations

To offset the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, Vermont

arts and humanities organizations can apply for recovery funding

through the Vermont Arts Council and Vermont Humanities.

A total of $1.2 million in grants seeded by the American

Rescue Plan Act of 2021 and funded through the National Endowment

for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for

the Humanities (NEH) were made available starting June 21

through the new Covid-19 Cultural Recovery Grant Program

co-administered by the Vermont Arts Council and Vermont

Humanities.

Early in the pandemic, in 2020, the two organizations

jointly gave over $780,000 in Covid-19 Emergency Relief

Grants to 123 cultural organizations, located in all 14 counties

in Vermont. The Arts Council also administered $5 million

in Economic Recovery grants allocated by the Vermont state

legislature in July 2020 to further support Vermont cultural

organizations.

In the spring and summer of 2020 alone, Vermont cultural

organizations sustained over $35 million in lost revenue. Vermont’s

arts and culture sector provides more than 40,000 jobs

annually and comprises 9.3% of all employment in Vermont,

higher than the national average.

“Vermont’s museums, galleries, art centers, and performance

venues have been creative and resilient at managing

the impact of the pandemic, but they continue to suffer losses

in the millions,” said Vermont Humanities Executive Director

Christopher Kaufman Ilstrup. “These grants will help fill

in part of the gap, but we also urge the public to step in and

contribute to their favorite cultural places.”

Any arts and/or humanities organizations that are incorporated

in the state of Vermont with a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt

status may apply for the grant. Organizations that received

a grant in 2020 from the Vermont Arts Council or Vermont

Humanities and/or a Vermont Economic Recovery Grant for

Cultural Organizations from the Vermont Agency of Commerce

and Community Development (ACCD), or other state

or federal Covid-19 relief grants, are also eligible to apply for

the new round of grants.

Grant amounts will be based on organization size:

• Annual operating budgets of up to $250,000: $5,000 grant

• Annual operating budgets between $250,000 and $750,000:

$10,000 grant

• Annual operating budget larger than $750,000: $15,000 grant

“As we all emerge from the storms of the past fifteen

months, we are proud to provide this vital support to arts and

culture organizations that are community anchors in towns

across Vermont,” said Arts Council Executive Director Karen

Mittelman. “Rebuilding and strengthening Vermont’s vibrant

arts and culture sector is essential as we chart a course forward

for Vermont communities.”

The Arts Council and Vermont Humanities aim to fund a

diverse range of organizations of different disciplines, geographic

locations, and backgrounds through the new grants.

The deadline for applying for the first round of grants is July

21. Applications for a second round of grants will be due September

14.

The funds may be used to cover general operating costs; efforts

related to preparing, responding to, and recovering from

the Covid-19 pandemic; the expansion of outdoor and virtual

programming; salary support; and more. Funded activities for

all grantees must start no later than December 1, 2021 and

must end no later than November 30, 2022.

For full details and to apply for the Covid-19 Cultural Recovery

Grant, applicants can visit either the Vermont Arts Council

application page or the Vermont Humanities application page.

Forty percent of the $135 million in American Rescue Plan

(ARP) funds allocated to both the NEH and NEA is distributed

to state, jurisdictional, and regional arts and humanities

organizations for regranting through their respective funding

programs. The remaining 60 percent of the ARP money is

awarded by the NEA and NEH directly to non-profit organizations

to assist the field in its response to and recovery from

the Covid-19 pandemic. The NEH has already launched its

American Rescue Plan grants for humanities organizations,

and applications are now under review. Guidelines and application

materials for ARP funding to arts organizations from

the NEA are expected soon.

• • •

Vermont Folklife Center Summer Institute

continued from previous page

through the creation of a community-led oral history collection.

Each participant will have an opportunity to record an

interview for the collection and engage in real-life community

dialogue during the ten-day course.

Participants may take the course for three graduate credits

through Castleton University, or a professional development

certificate. The course will include time for a discussion of

participants’ project ideas plus group and individual feedback

if they wish. Virtual and on-site support from VFC staff post-

Institute to support project implementation is included in the

tuition.

For registration, tuition, or other information, visit www.

vermontfolklifecenter.org or contact us at 802-388-4964 or

education@vermontfolklifecenter.org. Check out the Institute

webpage here: https://www.vermontfolklifecenter.org/

summer-institute.

The Vermont Folklife Center seeks to broaden, strengthen

and deepen our understanding of Vermont and the surrounding

region; to assure a repository for our collective cultural

memory; and to strengthen our communities by building connections

among the diverse peoples of our state.

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June 30, 2021 The WORLD page 5


Blue Cross and Blue Shield of

Vermont Celebrates the

Culmination of Girls on the

Run Vermont 2021 Season

“I think I want to try running track next year,” an 11-yearold

girl tells her dad, who looks down at her with a surprised

smile. They are both breathing hard, and the girl is visibly

reverberating with excitement and pride.

The pair had just finished a 5K that capped an eight-week

session of Girls on the Run Vermont. The program is open to

girls in elementary school, and their Heart & Sole program

has a specialized curriculum for middle school girls. Each

lesson is designed to engage their confidence, positive decision

making, physical, social, and emotional competencies.

Focusing on the whole child using a fun and engaging curriculum

carries over into confidence in school, at home, and

with peers. Each session is carefully built to inspire the girl’s

strengths and strong sense of self and ends with an Energy

Award that recognizes one individual for her positive contribution

to the group that day.

On a particular Tuesday, the lesson of the day was compromise.

The activities required the girls to work together toward

a common goal using strong communication, compromise and

patience. Another week they dove into community, belonging,

and how we help each other, capping the day with potting

flowering plants and delivering them to local business owners

who have been struggling through the pandemic economy.

Each session has a lesson, reflection, and of course, running,

walking, or movement. A lesson never passed without a whole

lot of laughter.

“We support Girls on the Run Vermont because of its lifelong

impact on girls’ health and wellness. When I attend the

5K run each year, I hear again and again from participants that

they didn’t think they could do it and they are so proud when

they cross that finish line,” says Megan Peek, Director of

Community Relations and Health Promotion at Blue Cross

and Blue Shield of Vermont. “The energy, positive reinforcement

and sense of community is powerful to witness.”

The program started in Windham County in 1999 and has

since grown to challenge and inspire girls in all 50 states. In

Vermont, the program impacts about 2,700 kids in 170 locations

each year with an impressive cadre of volunteer coaches.

“I am thrilled that we were able to offer the program this

spring after having to cancel our 2020 season due to Covid,”

says Rachel Desautels, Executive Director of Girls on the

Run. “With Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Vermont’s continued

support, girls across the state finally had the opportunity

to connect with their peers and coaches in person again while

experiencing the joy of the positive and uplifting lessons that

are the foundation of our program. Building self-confidence is

at the core of Girls on the Run, and girls need that messaging

now more than ever after navigating through the pandemic.”

With the pandemic, the program shifted slightly this year,

to smaller teams and of course Covid protocols in place. “The

girls are just incredible. Running in masks is harder than it

looks, and it simply didn’t faze them. It was incredible to

watch them grow and reach for their goals during an otherwise

challenging year,” said Julie Bier, a volunteer coach in

Montpelier.

In past years, the celebratory capstone event was held at the

Essex Fairgrounds for girls from the northern part of the state,

at Brattleboro Union High School for the southern Vermonters,

and at Castleton University for those from the central part of

the state. These 5K runs traditionally brings kids and their

families together from every corner of Vermont. This year

each team is celebrating the accomplishment with smaller

groups in their communities.

“I really liked it this year because it was with the girls I

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have been training with and who I know,” says Lucy Copans, We Get

who has been a participant in the Montpelier program for two

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Since 1972

just felt like a fun run with my friends and my dad. It feels

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program. 85 percent of girls in the program felt they had an

increased confidence and connection to others. The girls who

were the least active at the start of the program increased their

physical activities by 40 percent. Nearly every girl—97 percent—felt

they learned critical life skills in the program.

“It’s incredible to think about what these girls will go on to

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