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Project Support Grants

The purpose of Project Support Grants is to increase opportunities for access to cultural arts programming in Cumberland County.  Cultural arts are defined as: arts, science, history and heritage.  Project Support Grant funds must be matched 1:1 by the applicant with the exception of Series Organizational Support Grants which must be matched 2:1. 

Funding Partners include:

  • Individual Donors
  • State of North Carolina
  • City of Fayetteville
  • Cumberland County
  • Cumberland County Occupancy Tax

The mission of the Arts Council is to support individual creativity, cultural preservation, economic development and lifelong learning through the cultural arts.  However, the Board of Trustees does recognize that government agencies and non-profits whose primary focus is not in these areas contribute to this mission through cultural arts programming.   In order to remain in compliance with restrictions set forth by our funding partners and to maximize our dollars to meet this mission, the Arts Council has these funding priorities:

  1. 501(c) organizations whose primary mission is arts, culture or history.
  2. Universities, schools, and government entities with ongoing arts and culture programming.
  3. Other 501(c) and government agencies that conduct periodic arts and culture programming.

These priorities are taken into consideration by the grants panel along with the criteria set forth in the Project Support Grant guidelines when making funding recommendations to the Arts Council Board of Trustees.

Project Support Grants may be awarded to nonprofit agencies in Cumberland County that demonstrate financial and administrative stability. Grant requests range from $1,000 - $30,000, depending upon the category. Grant funds support expenses that are directly related to the project. Allowable costs may include qualifying professional program-related fees and contracts, marketing and other project-related costs.

Grant Categories include:

  • Series Organizational Support Grants
  • Series Project Support Grants
  • Youth Education Grants
  • Cultural Tourism Grants
  • Organizational Development Grants
  • Other Grants
  • Project must take place July 1, 2017 June 30, 2018
  • Organizations are limited to a total of three Project Support Grant Applications
  • Project support grants are matching grants:
    • In-kind contributions cannot be counted as match
    • Arts council grants cannot be matched with another Arts Council grant
    • Arts Council grants can be matched with grants from other organizations
    • An organization cannot use the same matching funds toward more than one Arts Council Grant

For more information about allowable expenditures, please review the Project Support Guidelines or call the Arts Council at 910-323-1776.

The following list represents Arts Council funding priorities for Project Support Grants:

  • New programming or previously funded programs with new components, elements or arts/culture/history professionals
  • Programs that develop and employ local artists or cultural professionals.
  • Programs which employ OR present works by a majority diverse population (African-American, Asian-American, Latino, Native American)
  • Programs that encourage underdeveloped disciplines. 
  • Programs that broaden participation by attracting more people; diversify participation by attracting audiences different from those the organization is already attracting; or, deepen participation by increasing current participants' levels of involvement.
  • Organizations that demonstrate plans for future funding of the project.
  • Programs that target traditionally underserved populations (See Outreach Programs).
  • Programs that utilize professional artists or cultural professionals in educational and other supplemental activities such as: literary readings, open rehearsals, question and answer sessions, master classes, meet-the-artist/cultural professional receptions, pre-and post-event discussions, workshops and lecture/demonstrations.
  • Programs that develop cultural tourism and enhance the visitor’s experience.
  • Programs that include collaborations with other non-profit organizations in the community.

A Grants Panel will review Project Support Grant applications. The Panel consists of volunteers with professional experience in arts, culture, history, education, grants, finance, and management. The Panel will be representative of our diverse community. At least one member of the Panel will be an Arts Council Trustee.  The written application and attachments are the applicant’s opportunity to present its best case for funding support. The panel makes funding recommendations based on information provided.  The Arts Council staff does not vote on awards.  Final approval of awards is voted on by the Arts Council Board of Trustees.

Please note – it is understood that not every program will meet or embrace every evaluation criteria. Each application will be evaluated on an overall impression of the applicant’s strengths in the following areas:

  • Artistic/Cultural/Historic Merit and Integrity – 45 points
  • Program Impact – 30 points
  • Program Execution and Management – 25 points

For more information on how each of these areas are evaluated, please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions (link)

A grants panel carefully considers all applications before making its funding decisions. Both the Executive Committee and the Arts Council Board of Trustees then review these recommendations before approval. The decision-making process is guided by evaluative criteria, which requires judgment on the part of the panelists and Board members. Award decisions are final. Amount of grant are determined based on the merit of the application.  

Project Support Grants are intended to fund a particular project that begins no earlier than July 1 and concludes by June 30 of the Arts Council fiscal year. Informational workshops will be held to assist interested organizations. See application for grant writing workshop information.  Attendance is required for first time applicants.

Attending a workshop is an essential first step in developing a successful application.  Workshops are typically held in January/February.  Workshop attendance is mandatory for any organization applying for the first time and highly recommended for returning applicants.

Thoroughly review the grant guidelines before you apply.  Grant responsibilities may be greater than you expect. Applying for a Project Support Grant is a two-pronged process. Applicants should first submit the Letter of Intent form. Once the Letter of Intent is submitted and reviewed by the Arts Council, applicants may be invited to make a formal application for funding. 

We’re here to help, so take time to talk with our staff. Both experienced and first-time applicants should call the Arts Council staff to discuss proposals. This should happen early in the planning process so that we can help you make your proposal competitive. Many people review each proposal and it is imperative that it be readable, thoughtful and understandable. Information requested should be complete. Please download and use the correct Letter of Intent Application form. Do not use old forms. If you are in doubt of which form to use, please contact staff listed below.

Applicants who apply in the Series Organizational Support category may apply for one grant annually. All other applicants may apply for up to three project support grants each year. Please provide complete and accurate information as requested on the form. Upload the Letter of Intent/Application and support materials to your organization’s ShareFile folder. If you do not have a folder or access to ShareFile, please contact staff listed below. Use the application checklist as your guide for requested attachments within each grant category.

Do not miss the deadline. All submission deadlines are “received by” and not “postmarked by” deadlines.

Late submissions will not be accepted and incomplete submissions will not be accepted past the final deadline.

Step 1:  Letter of Intent

Due in early February – Please see current year guidelines for deadlines (link)?

Required Documents for LOI Submission:

  • Letter of Intent Form
  • Detailed Preliminary Project Budget (new projects only)
  • IRS Tax Determination Letter (first time applicants only)

Applicants will receive notification from the Arts Council if they are eligible to proceed to the next step of submitting a full grant application

Step 2:  Project Support Grant Application

For those organizations that have submitted a Letter of Intent and have been notified that they are eligible to proceed, the full application and required attachments are due by the deadline dates listed below. Late or incomplete applications will not be accepted. Applications should not be mailed, emailed or hand-delivered, they must be submitted via ShareFile.

Early Bird Review Deadline – Tuesday, March 7, 2017 by 5:00 PM

If you would like your application reviewed and verified that all requirements have been met you must upload your application to Sharefile by this date. You will be notified within 10 business days of any additional documents needed.

Final Deadline – Monday, March 27, 2017 by 5:00 PM

This is the final deadline for submission of all project support applications. Applicants who submit their applications by this deadline will not be notified of any missing information.  Incomplete applications will not be submitted to the panel.

Notification of Awards - By July 1 of current year

Completion of Contract and Required Grantee Documents-Varies by Organization

Final Report - Due June 15 of award year

Thirty grant requests were funded through the Project Support category.

Cape Fear Studios: Series Support – ($5,000) This Series Support grant supports Cape Fear Studios’ promotion of their monthly Fourth Friday Exhibits.  Cape Fear Studios offers ten new monthly art exhibits per year including group, juried and solo exhibitions, the marketing of which this grant funds.

Cape Fear Studios: Education – ($4,500) This grant supports weekly classes, workshops and summer camps.

Cape Fear Studios: Summer Youth Program – ($2,000) This grant will support one week of a visual arts camp offered at no cost for up to 25 youth.

Cape Fear Valley Medical Foundation – ($7,000) The Friends of the Cancer Center uses this funding to support the “Artful Reflections” program, an art therapy program for cancer patients and caregivers. The funds support the artist fees for those who provide the weekly therapy sessions. The program reaches an average of 15-20 people each week in regularly scheduled art therapy sessions and many more through special art therapy events.

Communities in Schools – ($10,000) This grant assists with the Yanoff Music Program.  Fayetteville Symphony Orchestra will provide classroom visits for 3rd grade students.

Community Concerts of Fayetteville: Cultural Tourism – ($9,000) This grant assists with the cost of marketing the Concert Series regionally.

Community Concerts of Fayetteville: Series Support – ($5,000) In the 81th season of Community Concerts, this grant supports Community Concerts presentation of four concerts during the 2016-2017 series. The organization anticipates multi-racial, multi-generational, multi-cultural and economically diverse audiences at these performances.

Cumberland County Public Library – ($4,000) This grant will support the annual Storytelling Festival which includes performances and activities at all 8 library locations over the course of one week.

Cumberland County Schools – ($4,500) This funding will support the NC Symphony Concert for all 5th grade classes and teacher workshops for three teachers.

Cumberland Oratorio Singers: Series Support – ($5,000) The mission of the Cumberland Oratorio Singers is to present high-quality classical and popular choral music for residents of Cumberland and surrounding counties. This grant supports the Singers’ 25th Anniversary Concert Series of 5 performances.

Cumberland Oratorio Singers: Youth Education – ($1,500) This grant supports the Campbellton Youth Choir..

Downtown Alliance – ($2,700) This grant will support the Busker Program which will include buskers downtown on Fourth Fridays, March-November.

Downtown Alliance – ($5,000) This grant will support the creation of a Tile Mosaic Stair Mural at the new Downtown “Play Art Park”.

Downtown Alliance – ($2,500) This grant will support Temporary Public Art through Downtown Fayetteville.

Ellington-White Community Development Corporation: Series Support – ($7,500) With the support of this grant, Ellington-White Community Development Corporation will produce a series of six art exhibitions during the grant year each with lectures and workshops.  The exhibitions will include work by culturally diverse local, regional, national and international artists.

Ellington-White Community Development Corporation: Youth Education – ($4,000) With the support of this grant, Ellington-White Community Development Corporation will produce “Discovering the Arts” a three week arts program for at-risk youth.

Fayetteville/Cumberland County Parks and Recreation – ($3,500) This grant will support the annual July 1st outdoor concert in partnership with the NC Symphony.

Fayetteville State University: Fine Arts Series Series Support – ($5,000) FSU’s Fine Arts Series was created to inform, enrich, engage and inspire the community. This grant supports a series of programs throughout 2016-2017 that feature gallery exhibits, music, drama and dance events. The Series also includes educational (K-12) and community outreach activities designed to engage and build audiences for the fine and performing artists.

Fayetteville State University – ($6,500) This grant will support the Rosenthal Gallery NAAHBCU Conference.

Fayetteville State University: Sweet Tea Shakespeare Series Support – ($4,000) This grant supports The Sweet Tea Shakespeare Company productions of six Shakespearean plays for general audiences.

Friends of the Cumberland County Public Library, Inc. – ($2,000) This grant supports the Writer’s Workshop which includes a two day workshop plus a Master Class.

Gilbert Theater: Series Support – ($8,500) During the Gilbert Theater’s 2016-2017 season, the organization will present five live stage productions.

Gilbert Theater: Youth Education – ($5,000) This grant supports youth theater education through Gilbert Glee, Summer Acting Camp & After School Programming.

Groundswell Pictures – ($5,000) This youth education grant supports the creation of the Indigo Moon Film Festival.  2016 will be the inaugural year of this three day festival.

Groundswell Pictures – ($3,000)  Grant funds support the MoonShadow Movie Guild, which provides members and the general public with monthly films screenings and filmmaker discussions at the CAMEO Art House Theater.

Methodist University/Friends of  Music – ($2,300) This grant supports the Guest Artist Series which includes four performances offered for both public and CEA students.

Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex Foundation: Series Support – ($5,000) Grant funds support the Museum’s Cultural Palooza V and it’s series of three programs:  Festival of Yesteryear: A Celebration of Early America, Halloween Revels and Holiday Jubilee.

North Carolina State Ballet – ($4,500) Support from the Arts Council assists the North Carolina State Ballet with a production of the “Nutcracker”, which has been an annual production since 1977.  All fourth graders in Cumberland County schools have the opportunity to learn about the music, history and other information about the “Nutcracker”, and then deepen their knowledge with the live presentation of the fully staged ballet.

Sandhills Family Heritage – ($3,000) Support from the Arts Council will assist Sandills Family Heritage with the Sankofa Festival.  This one day festival highlights African American culture and heritage.

Sustainable Sandhills – ($2,000) This General Support grant supports a concert for you with folksinger Dana Lyons during the celebration of Earth Day.

Have more questions? Contact Adrienne Trego, Education and Outreach Director, at (910) 323-1776  ext. 228, or Nancy Silver, General Manager at (910) 323-1776 ext. 225,