Broadening Narratives - What Don't You Know About the Place You Live?

Collections are comprised of diverse narratives that provide perspectives from the past, contribute to a better informed present, and lead to a more inclusive, sustainable and healthier future. We encourage collecting organizations in our two regions to amplify overlooked voices and animate and expand the stories and insights derived from their collections. Diverse narratives include the stories and perspectives of culturally specific communities—African Americans, Indigenous peoples, and other people of color—LGBTQ perspectives, working-class narratives, small community experiences, as well as other underrepresented groups and viewpoints. Emerging, compelling underrepresented perspectives reflective of collections in the areas of science, public health, and the natural world are also important to our regions’ collective narratives.

Let's Broaden the Narrative

Watch the video from our October 21, 2020 launch event. The webinar includes a history of how the strategy came to be, a panel discussion with two collecting organizations, the short video above sharing some stories from Chicago and the Lowcountry, as well as Q&A with GDDF staff.


Collecting organizations interested in developing a proposal must start the process by reaching out to Ellen Placey Wadey (, for projects located in the Chicago metro area, or Jason Crowley (, for projects located in the Lowcountry of South Carolina.  Please email either one to set up a time and begin the conversation.


  • More organizations have better collections practices
  • More collecting organizations are operationally stronger
  • More organizations promote diverse narratives through their collections
  • More public engagement with a broader array of diverse narratives


To be eligible for a grant:

  • Must be a 501(c)(3) or approved fiscal sponsorship
  • Organizations must be located in the Chicago region or Lowcountry of South Carolina
  • Organizations must be in compliance with their Secretary of State
  • The collection to be supported must be rooted in an underrepresented narrative from one of the two regions (Chicago or Lowcountry of SC)
  • The collection to be supported must be located in one of the two regions and currently or planned to be publicly accessible
  • Organization must demonstrate ongoing human, material, and financial support directed toward their collection’s effort


The following are not eligible:

  • Individuals
  • Religious activities
  • Political campaigns, or legislative lobbying
  • Endowments, capital campaigns, or debt reduction
  • Improvements or repairs to physical facilities


Broadening Narratives is by invitation only. Please contact us to start a conversation:

In the Chicago Region contact Ellen Placey Wadey (

In the Lowcountry contact Jason Crowley (

Broadening Narratives is by invitation only. Please contact us to start a conversation.


Current grantees, you will hear from us in advance of your final report date to discuss renewal options or updated projects.

If you would like to return to an existing application please use the link below to log in to your Grantee Portal Account: