Grant Opportunities In Community Arts
Community Arts Program
The Community Arts Program of the New Jersey State Council on the Arts seeks to make the arts an integral part of community life, grow the arts from the grassroots and extend the benefits of the arts to residents in all corners of the state. This program area includes a battery of funding vehicles, initiatives and collaborative strategies to support local arts development, folk and traditional arts, community cultural planning, participation building and connecting the arts to the civic agenda, with special emphasis on improving access to the arts for underserved audiences and communities.
Local Arts Program (LAP)
Since 1979 the New Jersey State Council on the Arts has worked in collaboration with the complete network of 21 officially designated County Arts Agencies (CAAs) to provide the people in all corners of the state with access to quality arts experiences in their communities. The Council awards multi-year Local Arts Program Grants to the CAAs to support their local arts development programs, activities, planning, administration and professional development; and to regrant funds to community-based arts organizations and projects, which have local Impact. Over 550 such grants are made annually under grant programs designed and administered by the respective CAA.
Local Arts Staffing Initiative (LASI)
LASI grants are multi-year awards to County Arts Agencies to increase the capacity of the CAA to fulfill its local arts development goals by the augmentation of permanent professional arts administration staffing. Over the life of the commitment, the state share decreases as the county share increases. After four years the CAA assumes the full cost of the new position.
Arts in Communities (AIC)
These matching, annual project grants are awarded to support new or expanded collaborative projects that connect the arts to people and communities in deep and meaningful ways, and demonstrate the public value that the arts contribute to individuals and civic life. Projects can be in one of four areas: 1) community cultural planning projects, 2) projects that explore lifelong learning in the arts in community settings, 3) projects that connect the arts to another civic sector, and 4) projects that engage artists in the developing community projects or creating new work that reflects and is carried out with the community.
Building Arts Participation (BAP)
The BAP program stems from the NJSCA's participation in the Wallace Foundation's START initiative through which the Council invested in nine participation-building pilot projects to more closely examine barriers, and develop and test specific strategies designed to improve participation. The Council has a long standing commitment to build arts participation and it will continue its targeted investment through the BAP program for which support will be provided for projects that demonstrate a commitment to increasing the value and meaning of art to participants and enhancing its role in the community. BAP support will be provided for exemplary projects that work closely with a defined target population to identify barriers, compose compelling strategies to address barriers and measure outcomes with the goal of affecting both organizational change and arts participatory behavioral change through projects that focus on broadening, deepening and/or diversifying.
To be eligible an applicant must be a current General Operating/General Program Support grantee or a County Arts Agency.
Community Development through the Arts
The Council has placed increased emphasis and focus on the importance of the arts as a powerful tool for economic and community development. In addition to its funding programs that encourage community cultural planning and other means of connecting the arts to communities, the Council is now more actively publishing articles, engaged in speaking appearances and organizing panel presentations to local officials by working closely with the New Jersey League of Municipalities, New Jersey Planning Officials, and the NJ Chapter of the American Planning Association to encourage cities and towns everywhere to make the arts and culture central to their plans for economic and community vitality.
Folk Arts Program
Diversity is one of New Jersey's most significant and valuable characteristics. The state's many geographic and demographic settings are interwoven with ethnic, cultural and occupational networks, creating a dynamic array of communities. In them, traditional folk arts are valued ways of expressing identity and strengthening group ties. To support this cultural richness, as well as the broader public appreciation and understanding of it, the Council has established a multi-faceted Folk Arts Program.
Folk Arts Apprenticeships
These grants to individuals encourage cultural communities to continue passing on their valued traditions in traditional settings by providing stipends so that master folk artists and craftspersons can help apprentices develop greater skill. Since 1995 these modest grants have supported more than 100 apprenticeships in dozens of different cultural communities and scores of different art forms, reflecting the rich array of traditional arts in our state. Applications are available in winter with a deadline in the spring and awards announced in July.
Folk Arts Project Grants
Organizations may apply for Folk Arts Project Grants to support specific events to help preserve and share with a broader public the unique traditional arts that are practiced in New Jersey communities. Applications are available in the fall with a deadline in the winter and awards announced in July.
Folk Arts Infrastructure
Folk arts development in New Jersey has been guided by a Folk Arts Infrastructure Plan created with input from folk cultural specialists, folk artists and practitioners, and diverse communities throughout the state. Core to implementation of that plan is the development of a network of regional folklife centers in the state that conduct fieldwork research in their regions and produce and present programs to preserve and highlight the great diversity of folk arts traditions practiced in New Jersey.