This week we spoke with Michael Haley Goldman, Executive Director, New Hampshire Humanities (NHH). NHH has faced the same obstacles as many other organizations as most services and programs had to move to virtual experiences. “The team did a really great job of moving things into web-based humanities programming,” said Goldman. “Money from the CARES Act and the SHARP Act all came through us and all around New Hampshire.”
From a diversity, equity, and inclusivity perspective NHH has made it an urgency to raise awareness on incorporating different backgrounds in the organization. “One of the big series that was run in 2020 was a series called Black Thought and that was one that was really directed in response to trying to center voices that hadn’t been heard through the community,” explained Goldman on one of the programs used to educate the audience on diverse ideas.
By assisting local organizations, NHH works diligently to make sure who is receiving funding and what communities those organizations are serving. “It is really important for all of us as we look at where programs are happening and who is part of those programs. There’s a lot of discussion around the idea of diversifying audiences but that has to be done hand and hand with communities themselves,” said Goldman on working with organizations in bringing in diverse backgrounds.
Reaching out to communities has been challenging as NHH struggles to see who is receiving their information. “We haven’t been asking the right questions I think in the past. So the idea that we need to understand is who’s hearing us and who’s not, what are the gaps in that audience that we have so we don’t have enough information yet about who’s on the other end of that conversation,” he explained. Schools, libraries, and community centers are the organizations NHH tries to incorporate its resources to build the community.
NHH Website: https://www.nhhumanities.org/
NHH Programs: https://www.nhhumanities.org/programs/