New York, NY (May 9, 2018)—The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) has approved a $70,000 Arts Work grant to the Academy of American Poets to support the organization’s efforts in increasing the audience for poetry through its signature programs, including National Poetry Month, Poets.org, and Poem-a-Day.
“We are grateful to NEA Chairman Jane Chu and Literature Director Amy Stolls for providing key funding to support our work to champion poets and poetry and engage more readers than ever before in all fifty states,” said Jennifer Benka, Executive Director of the Academy of American Poets.
The Academy of American Poets founded National Poetry Month in 1996 and continues to organize the annual celebration, serving as its official online information hub and providing resources for libraries and schools, educational projects, events listings, and blog posts that highlight creative poetry programs across the country. With the help of the NEA and more than fifty sponsors, including the American Booksellers Association, American Library Association, and the National Council of Teachers of English, National Poetry Month is now the largest literary celebration in the United States and remains core to the Academy of American Poets’ programming.
Poets.org also was launched in 1996, becoming the world’s first website featuring poems, poets’ biographies, and resources for K–12 teachers. Today, with tens of millions of visitors each year, Poets.org is the most popular publicly-supported poetry destination online. In addition to award-winning materials for educators, the website enables users to create anthologies of poems, promote local events, and become a member of the Academy of American Poets, which includes receiving books and American Poets magazine twice yearly. In addition, Poets.org now spotlights other poetry journals and organizations through content partnerships and the Academy of American Poets’ work coordinating the Poetry Coalition.
The original and only daily series featuring previously unpublished poems, Poem-a-Day has become one of the most wide-reaching platforms for poets to share new work. Through email, social media, and syndication online and in print, Poem-a-Day is distributed to 450,000+ readers each morning. Ensuring the editorial participation of a range of perspectives, the series is curated by twelve guest editors.
For more information on all of the projects included in the NEA grant announcement, visit arts.gov/news.