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Help Your Tribal Library: Submit A Successful Native American Library Services Basic Grant Application

March 7, 2017

By Sandra Toro, Ph.D., Senior Program Officer
Aly DesRochers, Program Specialist
IMLS Office of Library Services

IMLS is currently accepting applications until April 3 for its Native American Library Services Basic Grants, one-year, $6,000, non-competitive grants that support existing library operations and maintain core library services. An additional $1,000 education and assessment option is available as well. All federally recognized tribes and Alaskan Native villages and corporations with libraries are eligible to apply. To help both new and returning applicants submit successful applications, we’ve put together a list of helpful tips, updates and changes, and invite all interested institutions to join a webinar Thursday, March 9, to get more information.

Helpful Tips:

  • Read the current Notice of Funding Opportunity and let us know if you have any questions as soon as possible.
  • Register early for a D-U-N-S® number; register with the System of Award Management (SAM) at, and create a account. (Call 1-800-518-4726 for help with
  • Make sure you don’t have any delinquent reports to federal agencies or you cannot receive an award. (If you’re not sure, get in touch with us and we can help you find out).
  • Our next Basic grant webinar is Thursday, March 9th, at 3 p.m. ET. If you can’t participate, review an archived webinar. (Webinars are great refreshers for applicants who have not submitted a proposal for several years as well as new applicants who are unfamiliar with the application and review process.)
  • Make sure your budget items match what is described in your Library Services Plan.
  • Talk with program staff. If you’re unsure if a cost is allowable or if you are not sure about what to include in your project plan, we are happy to provide guidance and give you feedback.


  • PDFs only! We cannot accept Word documents. Make sure all your required application components are PDFs.
  • Digital Product Forms are conditionally required. If you are using Basic funds to create any kind of digital product, like a website or content, like digitized oral histories, you must submit the Digital Product Form as part of your application.


  • There is a new deadline. All Basic grant applications are due Monday, April 3.
  • There is a new Budget Form. There is no sample budget on the new form. (Your application will be rejected if you use an old budget form!)

Finally, please include ALL the required documents in your application package. We don’t want your application to be rejected because you forgot the SF-424s, the Program Information Sheet, the Library Services Plan, the Budget Form, or the Digital Product Form, if applicable. Make sure required forms are submitted as part of your application package or your proposal will be rejected!

Good luck!

Dr. Sandra ToroAly DesRochers

About the Authors

Dr. Sandra Toro is a senior program officer who manages the Native American and Native Hawaiian Library Services grant programs and oversees a portfolio of learning research projects.  She can be reached at

Aly DesRochers is a program specialist who assists with the Native American and Native Hawaiian Library Services grant programs. She can be reached at

Native American Library Services