Grant Details and How to Apply flower

Maada'ookiing is Indigenous-led investment into Indigenous solutions through grassroots grantmaking. It is designed to support community members to strengthen culture and community without having to apply on behalf of a formal nonprofit organization or Tribal entity. Each applicant may request a grant of up to $2,500. We anticipate three rounds of funding in the coming year, with applications being due in May, September, and February.

Some past examples of the work that happens but often goes unfunded include things like a community-organized talking circle, youth running group, sobriety support activities, teaching traditional art forms across generations, language tables, food sovereignty activities, and many other activities that Indigenous community members bring to life. Maada'ookiing Grassroots Grants are a way to support this creative, impactful, and Indigenous-led community building.

Contact Us with Questions

We hope most questions about what might be funded, who is eligible, and how to apply will be answered here. If you have other questions about Maada'ookiing, you can email LeAnn Littlewolf, Senior Program Officer, or call her at (218) 723-4040 or 1-800-433-4045. For questions about using the Grant Portal, email Carol Chipman, Grants Manager.

Nonprofit 501(C)(3) organizations, school districts, or Tribal government entities are encouraged to apply for funding through Northland's regular Grant Program.

Application Resources and Portal

Deadlines to submit applications for future grant periods are the 15th of February, May, and September. Applications can be submitted at any time and will be reviewed after the next deadline. Applicants will be notified of decisions approximately one month after the deadline.

Who Can Apply

  • Individuals or small groups who are citizens, descendants, or have kinship ties or affiliation to Indigenous communities for projects or activities within the geographic service area. In recognition of Indigenous identity and community identity, eligibility is defined to be inclusive of the broad relationships of belonging.
  • Area where the project is happening must be within:
    • Bois Forte Band of Chippewa
    • Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa
    • Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa
    • Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe (District I)
    • Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe (District II)
    • Minnesota counties of Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake, and/or St. Louis

Grant Focus Areas

  • Supporting Indigenous Youth
  • Strengthening Use of Indigenous Language
  • Creating Access to Indigenous Language (digital apps, dictionaries, video projects, and other creative projects)
  • Sharing Indigenous Culture/Spiritual Practices and Activities
  • Sustaining Tribal Civic Engagement, Sovereignty, and Self-Determination (including non-partisan Get Out the Vote or civic education)
  • Shifting the Narrative and Increasing Visibility of Contemporary Indigenous Community
  • Promoting Indigenous Leadership Experiences
  • Building Indigenous Economy and Entrepreneurship
  • Engaging in Indigenous Grassroots Organizing (projects that strengthen community well-being and/or respond to Indigenous community issues)

If applicants have projects that impact Tribal Nation communities or occur within Tribal Nation boundaries, the Maada'ookiing Board will consult with Tribal Nations as a matter of respect and recognition of sovereignty.

Costs that Grants will Cover

  • Materials and supplies to carry out grant-funded activities
  • Food for program participants
  • Space rental
  • Honorarium for Indigenous knowledge-holders who assist the project (elders, spiritual leaders, etc.)
  • Compensation for program organizers

The grant will NOT fund capital projects (such as buying or renovating buildings or projects that are mainly to buy equipment), political campaigns or other partisan political activities, sectarian religious activities, and personal compensation that is not related to project activities.

Is a Maada'ookiing Grant taxable?

All or a portion of the grant may be taxable income to the recipient, depending on how the grant funds are used. Although the Northland Foundation cannot provide tax advice to grant recipients, this overview is intended to help provide a general description of some of the tax issues associated with receiving grant funds.

Photographs provided by Ivy Vainio