Community Partner Fund Awardees

November 2019

Total Awardees: 2
Total Awarded: $200,000

Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop - $100,000


Community Partner Fund awardee Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop (MPWW) extends Minnesota’s vibrant literary community to incarcerated men and women. With this award, MPWW will create community partnerships between the thriving network of incarcerated writers served by the organization and the diverse network of Minnesota publishers, platforms, and artistic venues. At prisons in Faribault, Lino Lakes, Moose Lake, Shakopee, and Stillwater, MPWW will work in close collaboration with Writers Collectives – self-governing groups of experienced incarcerated writers – to identify the partnerships and opportunities that would be most valuable to them. In doing so, MPWW will amplify the voices of incarcerated men and women, connect Minnesotans to the stories of one of the most marginalized communities in our society, challenge stereotypes about the incarcerated community, and promote critical thinking about the criminal justice system.

“The grant from the Minnesota Humanities Center will create new platforms for the incarcerated community, which is very isolated, to participate in the broader artistic discourse and have a voice in shaping our culture. By presenting their stories and voices to broader audiences, this project will also showcase the diversity and humanity of the men and women currently living behind prison walls,” said Mike Alberti, Managing Director Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop.

MPWW Website

The National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition - $100,000


The National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition (NABS) leads in the pursuit of understanding and addressing the ongoing trauma created by the U.S. Indian Boarding School policy, which forced Indian children to attend schools where their languages and cultural practices were prohibited. For this project, NABS will partner with the Upper Sioux Nation to increase access to student records from the Pipestone Indian Boarding School, unveiling narratives and histories that have been intentionally hidden in order to oppress indigenous communities. This project directly amplifies a community’s solution for change as Upper Sioux members have requested that the truth about this history be made accessible to boarding school survivors and their descendants in order to better understand the impact of these experiences and facilitate healing. NABS will scan, digitize, and conduct research using the records of Pipestone Indian Boarding School. Ultimately, these records will become part of the Upper Sioux tribal archive’s physical collection and NABS’ digital archive as the organization works to digitize and make accessible boarding school records.

NABS Website