DEPARTMENT OF ART, CULTURE + TOURISM PROJECT FUND
Including PVDFest & Neighborhood Projects
GRANT DESCRIPTION AND DEADLINES
Through awards ranging from $500-$4,000 ACT supports projects that advance access and cultural equity, foster change and transformation, and demonstrate responsiveness and impact.
ACT also funds some projects and professional development for artists with smaller (up to $500) Micro Grants. Click here to download the Micro Grant application.
The spring deadline for FY24 applications (projects taking place between August 1, 2023 and June 30, 2024) will be March 15th, 2023.
Project Fund applicants increase their chances of being funded by contacting ACT to discuss their application prior to its submission. Special Projects Manager Micah Salkind will be the point of contact for the Project Fund: firstname.lastname@example.org or 401-680-5774.
Submissions must be submitted through this online portal or written/typed and sent through the mail or dropped off in person at The City of Providence Department of Art, Culture + Tourism, ATTN: Micah Salkind, 444 Westminster Street Third floor, Providence, RI 02903.
Please note: incomplete and unsigned applications will not be reviewed.
Applicants should speak to their experience working in Providence in their application narrative.
Applicants may apply for funds to use in planning, professional development, and project management.
Any public performances or exhibitions funded with Project Fund dollars must take place in a space that is physically accessible to people with disabilities, as required by law.
Applications will be judged in part on their feasibility and thus it is critical that proposed projects clearly state the who, what, where, and when of a project in addition to explaining how it will be organized, managed, and evaluated.
Applicants will also be evaluated based on how how their proposals address ACT’s grant-making and programmatic priorities:
Access: Art and culture are a part of everyone’s lives regardless of whether they have a disability or do not speak English.
Cultural Equity: Art and culture are relevant to the people of Providence; they foster relationships and conversations among the City’s diverse residents. For more on the City’s population, see here.
Change and Transformation: Artists and culture-brokers learn to take on new challenges, building capacity through planning and professional development.
Responsiveness: Art and culture are informed by significant engagements with specific cultural and/or neighborhood-based communities.
Impact: Art and culture support the livelihoods and creative pursuits of artists and culture-brokers and are engaged with by significant numbers of audience members.
Applicants can earn additional points by showing how their project will serve and be marketed to non-local tourists.
Eligible applicants must be:
A nonprofit corporation, located in Providence, with 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service, governed by a revolving board of directors, trustees or advisory board drawn from the community at large and shown to be actively involved in the activities of the organization. Divisions, branches, departments, programs, or other sub-units of nonprofit corporations may not apply on their own; applications may be submitted only by the parent corporation.
WHAT THE GRANT FUNDS
Project Fund support may be used for expenses related to a specific project, such as the production, presentation or exhibition of art, or for reasonable administrative expenses necessary to planning or carrying out the project. For past projects, see the “In The Community” section of ACT’s blog
WHAT THE GRANT DOES NOT FUND
Projects or artistic services for which the applicant will then be charging other City departments (e.g. a grant may not be used to produce a program for which Providence Public Schools would then be charged if their students attend);
Construction or capital expenses;
Deficit reduction or contributions to an endowment fund;
Fundraising events or benefit activities;
Prizes and awards;
Hospitality expenses, i.e., receptions, parties, gallery openings;
Expenses incurred prior to or after the fiscal year in which the fund has been awarded (a total of 12 months from the date the funds awarded, i.e. 7/1 thru 6/30);
Activities that are part of a graduate or undergraduate degree program;
Activities that have a religious purpose;
Performances and exhibitions not accessible to the general public;
Any entity owing money to the City of Providence.
APPLICATION OVERVIEW AND DIRECTIONS
SECTION 1: CONTACT INFORMATION AND FISCAL INFORMATION
Complete this section in its entirety. If you skip sections we may not be able to process your application.
SECTION 2: PREVIOUS FUNDING
If you have received money from this fund before tell us about what you produced.
SECTION 3: PROJECT NARRATIVE AND INFORMATION
Complete this section in its entirety. Refer to the above ACT guiding principles when describing your project.
SECTION 4: BUDGET (Budget Worksheet)
There is no matching requirement for this grant. The City funding can support one hundred percent of your proposed costs.
Organizations that require funding that exceeds $3,000 are encouraged to seek other funding sources to augment their budgets.
Sponsorship credits such as on-site banners, program credits, an announcement from stages are allowed.
In-kind donations may not be counted as cash income but should be noted in the budget as they demonstrate relevance.
Artistic fees must be paid directly to performers.
Administrative fees must be paid to administrative / production staff.
Rental costs of production materials include sound, lighting, and any other rentals necessary to complete the project.
Miscellaneous supplies and materials is a category for other products needed to produce the proposed project.
Travel and hospitality/subsistence are costs associated with transporting and lodging artists and other practitioners.
Other relevant expenses are those not expressly prohibited in the above guidelines.
SECTION 5: OPTIONAL SUPPORT MATERIALS
You may, but are not required to, submit up to ten separate documents that directly relate to and support your application with a focus on the review criteria as long as their cumulative size is less than 25 megabytes. They should be professionally formatted, easy to read, and uploaded to the online application.
Suggested support materials for your organization/project might include:
Photo or video documentation of recent artwork by the artist(s) featured in the proposed project.
Plans, sketches, or preliminary designs of the proposed project.
Select press and publicity.
Resumes/CVs of lead artists and/or staff.
Letters of support from key partners.
SECTION 6: SIGNATURE PAGE
You must sign and date this page in order for ACT to process your application. Download Signature Page here
Proposals will be reviewed by an advisory panel that will use the following criteria to assign a numerical score between 0 and 100 points:
Clarity of concept and feasibility (60/100)
The application clearly states what will be done; when and where things will take place; why the project should be supported with public funds; and how the applicant will go about organizing, managing and evaluating the project.
The budget is clear, detailed, and accurate. There is evidence that what is proposed is achievable by the applicant, on their own or in partnership with others.
In the absence of past experience, information is provided that helps make a convincing case that this project will succeed.
Attentiveness to ACT’s 5 guiding principles: access, cultural equity, change and transformation, responsiveness, and impact (30/100)
Capacity to promote the City of Providence as an artistic/cultural destination (10/100)
Applications address how their projects will be legible and interesting to non-local audiences, as well as how they will speak in marketing and publicity materials to those audiences.
FOR A DETAILED RUBRIC USED BY REVIEWERS, SEE HERE
REVIEW PROCESS (BEGINNING SPRING 2020)
Applications are checked by ACT staff for accuracy and completeness and then prepared for review by an advisory panel.
Applications are sent to panelists and are read and ranked online.
The review panel meets to determine the final funding recommendations.
Funding recommendations go to ACT staff for their review and approval.
Notification of grant awards will be made within twelve weeks of the application deadline.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND FUNDING CONSIDERATIONS
Applicants should understand that the fund processing procedure is lengthy. On some occasions, funds will not be received prior to the start of a project.
Funding applications are considered on a competitive basis. No applicant is guaranteed funding at any level, even if all basic criteria have been met.
All ACT awards are contingent upon the availability of funds from the City of Providence general fund and are subject to annual approval by the Mayor of Providence and the City Council.
Any fraudulent statement made in an application or support material will be grounds for denying all current and future funding requests.
Funding recipients must credit the City of Providence and the Department of Art, Culture + Tourism.
Funds must be expended during the fiscal year in which the fund is administered (August 1 – June 30th).
NOTE: ACT does not issue checks. Fund checks are issued by the City of Providence and have no set date of dispersal. Applicants should be aware of this and plan their cash flow accordingly.
LIMITS OF LIABILITY
ACT is not responsible for damage or loss of materials submitted to its office, whether or not such damage or loss is caused by negligence of the ACT Department, its employees, or agents. All supporting materials submitted must be duplicates. No original or single editions of works will be accepted. Submitted materials will not be returned.
All organizations that receive funding must submit a Final Report to the Department of Art, Culture + Tourism within 30 days of the close of their project or before June 1st, whichever comes first. To access the final report form, click here.
ADDITIONAL FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES
Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA)
Rhode Island Council for the Humanities (RICH)
New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA)
National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)
National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH)