2017 Arts & Culture Grants open

2017 Arts and Culture grants open

The Arts and Culture grantmaking program provides funding support, collaborative partnership opportunities, and program assistance for nonprofit arts and cultural organizations that are members of the Springfield Regional Arts Council.

Proposals will be accepted from either existing or emerging, community focused arts or cultural agencies which, for purposes of eligibility, are defined as newly formed or existing organizations that may be re-structuring, re-branding, or re-defining their artistic or cultural missions. Member agencies that have previously received Category 1 or Category 2 support may re-apply.

*Qualifying agencies should have 501(c)3 or similar faith-based or government IRS non-profit status.

Springfield-centered grant proposals should align with the goals of the Cultural Plan. Below is a summary of the plan's goals. More information about the Cultural Plan is available online, which also is incorporated into the City of Springfield’s new Field Guide 2030.

  • Continue to build the community of artists and supporters of the arts.

  • Fund and capitalize arts and cultural development.

  • Stabilize and strengthen strong and healthy arts and cultural organizations through collaboration, leadership, training, and communication.

  • Provide leadership for regional arts and cultural development.

  • Demonstrate and increase the awareness of the economic impact of the arts as one of the foundations/building blocks of overall economic and community development.

  • Contribute to the further creation of a vibrant Center City enriched by arts and culture.

  • Increase both resident and visitor interest, participation, and support in and for the arts and cultural events throughout the Springfield region.

  • Strengthen efforts for lifelong education, accessible to all ages and encompassing partnerships in higher education as well as pre-schools, schools, and the general community, with education provided in and through the arts.

Category 1:

Transforming grants of up to $4,000 are available for SRAC-member organizations with less than a $150,000 operating budget. Grants will require $2,000 in matching funding, which can include in-kind support by the requesting organization. Proposals should be directed toward sustainability or growth for the requesting agency. The following provide examples of the types of strategies that might support sustainability or growth, but the requests do not need to be limited to these categories.

  • Audience development

    • Developing an expanded audience base

    • Developing a different audience

    • Developing different marketing strategies

  • Sustainability

    • Developing an endowment

    • Developing sustainable funding

  • Board development

    • Identifying and recruiting effective board members

    • Clarification of board vs. staff roles

    • Strengthening organizational infrastructure

The agencies that are selected will be paired with a larger arts or cultural agency that will serve as a mentor during the implementation of the proposed project.

Category 2:

Grants of up to $1,500 are available to SRAC-member arts or cultural organizations on a competitive basis, regardless of operational budget size, for the sustainability strategies in the Category 1 requests listed above, or other appropriate strategies, collaborative partnership opportunities or program assistance. Grants will require $1,500 in matching funding, which can be inclusive of in-kind support by the requesting organization.

Proposals should provide “best practice” examples for program assistance requests or, for sustainability or collaborative partnership requests, substantive supporting references that illustrate successful growth strategies for similarly-sized arts or cultural organizations.

Applicants should be able to demonstrate:

  • The effectiveness of existing programming or demonstrate potential for success for new programming through previously successful program outcomes.

  • The impact of the request on organizational sustainability, audience or board development.

Questions should be directed to Brett Johnston, SRAC Director of Marketing and Development, at brett@springfieldarts.org.

More information: