History Colorado—founded in 1879 as the State Historical Society of Colorado—offers public access to the state’s cultural and heritage resources through preservation efforts, educational programming, research services, and the maintenance of thirteen historic sites and museums. In 2020, History Colorado launched a sweeping effort to document the Colorado experience of the COVID-19 pandemic through oral histories. Project directors soon realized that the state’s Hispano, Latino, and Chicano communities, which were disproportionately impacted by the myriad effects of the pandemic, were underrepresented in their documentation. Through an NEH CARES grant, History Colorado expanded its community partnerships to reach these underrepresented communities and began collecting and preserving artwork connected with COVID-19 experiences. Through these efforts, the project developed a more inclusive COVID-19 stories collection and built the capacity of social service organizations to understand the needs of their communities through oral histories.
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