Cape Cod nonprofit preserving Portuguese, Cape Verdean histories
Falmouth nonprofit Migrant Communities Project has secured funds to help members of Portuguese and Cape Verdean communities tell their stories.
The Cape Verdean Club of Falmouth, the Portuguese American Association of Falmouth, and the Fresh Pond Holy Ghost Society are some of the groups that have worked with the project to record their histories.
The project is using a $20,000 Mass Humanities grant to put oral and written histories online.
Dr. Miguel Moniz is Executive Director of Migrant Communities Project.
Moniz said it’s important for Portuguese and Cape Verdeans to be the ones who tell these stories.
“When you have people from communities participating in the telling of their own narratives… I think that is definitely a richer picture, and certainly a viewpoint one would not get when someone is examining things from the outside.”
Moniz said the grant will also be used to help train people to conduct history interviews.
“A lot of those people from those communities who have a lot of that cultural knowledge don’t necessarily have extensive training as anthropologists or ethnographers… So, one of the things that we’ve been doing with this project has been to try to help people develop skills.”
Moniz said the site will feature past recordings and transcripts, serving as a resource to the public and scholars.
An ethnographic exhibit with photographs and artifacts is also in the works for next fall.
Moniz said people who participate in the project will have a chance to present their work to the public as part of the exhibit.
An anthropologist who grew up in Falmouth, Moniz is now a fellow at the University of Lisbon in Portugal.
He says he hopes the Migrant Communities Project can expand to include the histories of other immigrant communities.
Head to the group’s social media to learn more about their upcoming workshops.