The Los Amigos Grant Program is a distinguishing hallmark of the organization. It is one of the ways we fulfill our mission to support Mexican artisans and education programs that increase knowledge about Mexican folk art.

Since the program began in 2007, Los Amigos has awarded 70 grants totaling just under $300,000. 31 organizations in Mexico and in the U.S. have received grant funding.

Funds for the Los Amigos grant program come from travel fees, membership dues and generous donations from our members. LADAP grants are most often awarded to:

•  S. 501 (c ) (3) organizations or Mexican organizations with similar charitable status recognition from the Mexican government

•  S. or Mexican artisans/educators who develop educational programs to increase awareness of Mexican folk art or teach artisans new skills

•  Mexican artisan cooperatives with or without charitable status

•  Mexican public or community-based organization whose mission is to support the continuation of traditional arts or to educate the public about Mexican folk art.

Grants are not awarded to individual artists or to individual collectors who propose projects for personal gain.

LADAP grants focus on supporting and promoting traditional and contemporary Mexican folk art and educating the public about Mexican folk art. Contemporary folk art is defined as the adaptation of traditional arts, methods, and historic themes.

The grant program has been on hiatus since 2020 but is expected to resume in 2024.

The year was not without challenges due to Covid-19, but the kiln was built on time and  the women of the group are all using it. Having the kiln has allowed the ceramicists to fire at a higher temperature which enabled the group to receive orders from the Harp Foundation of Oaxaca. The Foundation chose to purchase pieces from all the artisans who were working with the smokeless kiln. Additionally, the Foundation order provided financial resources during a difficult period of time when need was the greatest.

The women were so happy with the kiln, they inspired relatives from another part of the village talked his group into building a similar kiln as well. The ENC (Escuela Nacional de Ceramica) got excited about it too and got the help of a Japanese foundation to build another smokleless kiln. Sometimes it does, indeed, take a village to support the entire community.

The ENC (Escuela Nacional de Ceramica) made a commitment to provide technical support throughout the building of the kiln. Once the kiln was built they also agreed and to give classes on improving the mixture of sand and clay, working with glazes and drying large pieces without having them cracking. Sometimes all it takes is 1 group, 1 project, 1 success to get things moving forward. The LADAP grant provided the nudge this village needed to improve the quality of their ceramics, but also the quality of their everyday life by substantially reducing smoke that was harmful to both the ceramicists and the environment.

Zongolica is a region in mountains of Veracruz. Nahua is the primary language, resources can be scarce and substance and domestic abuse common. There is, however, a thriving community of weavers producing beautiful textiles from local wool. The isolation of the region was a barrier and limited the availability of their textiles outside their local communities. The LADAP grant provided funds for some of the weavers to travel to markets and communities outside Zongolica where they could meet other weavers, get techniques and ideas from them as well as how to begin marketing their textiles below.

The LADAP grant also help produce this video about the weavers of Zongolica which will be used as a marketing tool in hopes of boosting sales of their textiles. The video is in Spanish but do not be deterred, the videography is splendid and provides an impressive overview of the Zongolica and the weavers without need for words.