Funding for endangered language work often comes from local community sources, or is does on a shoestring. In some cases, governments and corporations contribute. Some funding is available only to those at academic institutions; other funding is targeted at community members who speak the language in question. Below are some of the organizations, particularly in the US and UK, which have been among the largest and most consistent funders in this area:
Funding partnership between the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) supporting academic research on endangered languages. In 2014, the program awarded over $4 million for 27 projects in the form of faculty research grants, one-year fellowships, and doctor dissertation grants. Projects have included recording, archiving, dictionary writing, database building, and more specialized academic studies. Grants can be for any language, but are only open to US citizens and foreign nationals who have been living in the US.
Endangered Language Fund (USA)
Small fund making annual awards, good for one year and $2,500 on average, to communities and researchers around the world engaged in documentation or revitalization. Past projects have funded literacy materials, indigenous language radio programs, and oral history recordings, among many other projects, in over 30 countries.
Large-scale initiative providing funding for academic researchers to document endangered languages around the world. In over a decade, ELDP has awarded over £11 million ($17 million) to 300 different documentation projects. Completed documentation materials are stored and made available at the Endangered Languages Archive.
Firebird Foundation (USA)
Fellowships up to $10,000 awarded to anthropologists, linguists, and other scholars, as well as to local researchers in indigenous societies. Progam focus is on collecting oral literature and traditional ecological knowledge.
Foundation for Endangered Languages (UK)
Non-profit that “supports, enables, and assists the documentation, protection, and promotion of endangered languages” through grants, the bi-annual Ogmios newsletter, and an annual conference. In recent years, 10-20 grants have usually been awarded, on average around $1000 per grant.
Fund for small cultural preservation projects, supporting efforts that have ranged “from local language initiatives to preserving community artifacts and teaching traditional farming techniques.” Offered annually, Legacy Fund grants are targeted at community-driven projects which “deliver a positive, tangible, and timely benefit” and usually do not exceed $25,000.