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Grants to Illinois Arts and Cultural Nonprofits in Eligible
Locations for Operational and Project Support

CityArts Program

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

03/22/22 5:00 PM CST


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Grants to Illinois nonprofit arts and cultural organizations in eligible locations for operational and project support. Operating funding may be used for administrative, artistic, and program-related needs. Project funding is intended for initiatives that have the potential to impact the Chicago dance community. Eligible applicants are located in Chicago.

The goal of DCASE’s CityArts Program is to encourage the attainment of artistic excellence and financial stability, and to incentivize innovation related to citywide priorities. This year’s program will include opportunities to apply for general operating grants across all artistic disciplines, as well as special project grants to support Chicago's dance community.

In 2022, the CityArts Program will offer three types of grants:

  1. General Operating Grants for Large Arts & Culture Organizations. For organizations with an annual adjusted income over $2M
  2. General Operating Grants for Small Arts & Culture Organizations. For organizations with an annual adjusted income under $2M
  3. Project Grants in alignment with the Year of Chicago Dance. For organizations of all budget sizes

General operating support funds may be used for artistic, administrative and/or program activities including expenses such as salaries, marketing, insurance, supplies, professional services, fees and training.

Project Grants: In 2022, CityArts Project Grants will support projects in alignment with the City of Chicago’s Year of Chicago Dance. In service of this initiative, 2022 CityArts Project grants will support initiatives that have potential to impact the Chicago dance community by addressing critical issues facing dancers and the field of dance. For more information, see

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 140270

Number of Grants:

Approximately 200 general operating grants to small organizations in 2022 and approximately 20 general operating grants to large organizations in 2022. DCASE anticipates awarding 5 - 20 Project Grants in 2022.

Estimated Size of Grant:

General Operating grant amounts for selected grantees will be determined based on the organization’s average Annual Adjusted Income over the past three years. For specifics, see p. 3 of the Guidelines in Supporting Documents below.

Project Grants: Requests ranging from $5,000 to $100,000. Applicants can request up to 25% of the combined total annual adjusted income of all collaborators from the 2019, 2020 or 2021 fiscal year, whichever is higher. Request will not be accepted for amounts lower than $5,000. If your organization's Adjusted Income was less than $20,000 last year, please apply for a $5,000 grant.

Term of Contract:

General Operating Grants: If awarded, all grant funds must be expended by the grantee between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2022. Grantees are likely to receive payment in November of 2022, but can use the funds to reimburse the organization for expenses incurred earlier in 2022.

General Operating grants will be renewable for one year and organizations that have received support through CityArts for three consecutive years do notneed to go off cycle in 2022.

Project Grants: If awarded, all grant funds must be expended or deposited by the grantee during the grant term of January 1, 2022 - December 31, 2022, but it is allowable for the DCASE-funded portion of the project to take place any time during the grant period of January 1, 2022 - December 31, 2022. Grantees are likely to receive payment in November of 2022, but funds can also be used to reimburse the organization for expenses incurred earlier in 2022.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Nonprofit arts and culture organizations of all sizes can apply for general operating grants and project grants.

To be eligible to apply for a CityArts grant, applicants must meet the following criteria. Organizations must:
• Have a primary mission to create, produce, present, provide, or support arts and culture services for the public.
• Offer programs in an artistic discipline, operate as a museum, or serve as an arts service organization.
• Be a nonprofit, 501(c)3 organization incorporated for at least 12 months prior to applying (must have been incorporated as of January 2021). General operating applicants must have been incorporated within the state of Illinois. National organizations with a Chicago branch are eligible to apply for project grants.
• Be a resident company in the city of Chicago with a valid street address (P.O. Boxes will not be accepted).
• Primarily serve the residents of the city of Chicago (demonstrate that, on average, half of all programming occurs within the city of Chicago limits).
• Special eligibility criteria for general operating grants only: Organizations must not be receiving other significant support (cash or In Kind) from the City of Chicago or a City of Chicago Delegate Agency. Significant support is defined as more than $1M within the calendar year towards an organization’s annual budget.

The following entities cannot be listed as the lead applicant on a proposal. However, collaborations with these entities are welcome for CityArts Project proposals:
• Organizations with primary office addresses located outside of the city of Chicago.
• Organizations applying using a fiscal agent.
• Organizations applying on behalf of an organization/program for which they serve as a fiscal agent or fiscal sponsor.
• For-profit organizations.
• Religious institutions.
• Public or governmental agencies.
• Schools or school districts.
• Athletic teams, social organizations, fraternal organizations.
• Individuals.

DCASE CityArts funds cannot be used to support:
• Capital improvements.
• The purchase of permanent, depreciable equipment valued at more than $5,000.
• Past CityArts Grantees that have not completed the required Interim or Final
Reports for their grants.

Pre-proposal Conference:

2022 CityArts Program Virtual Webinars

Thursday, February 10, 2022, 5:00pm - 7:00pm. Register Online:

Wednesday, February 16, 2022, 9:30am - 11:30am. Register Online:

Monday, February 28, 2022, 12:00pm - 2:00pm. Register Online:

Pre-Application Information:

2022 Grant Calendar:
- Application Opens and Guidelines become available: February 7, 2022
- Application Deadline: March 22, 2022: 5 pm CST. No Extensions will be granted. Applications must be submitted at least one week before the deadline to avoid technical issues. Any technical issues reported within the week prior to the deadline might not be resolved in time for you to successfully submit your application.
- Notification of Results: July 2022. All applicants will be notified via e-mail sent to the address on file in the CyberGrants system.
- Contracting Period: July-October 2022. Grant agreements and necessary attachments will be completed by grantees and processed by the cultural grants team.
- Payments Disbursed: November 2022

DCASE will schedule interviews with finalists before final grant decisions are made. Interviews will be conducted by DCASE staff and external grant review panelists.

New applicants will be required to register and create an account prior to accessing the applications.

Eligible organizations are able to apply for both a General Operating grant and a Project Grant in 2022. DCASE can only accept one general operating application per 501(c)3 through this program.

Grants will be made in a single, one-time payment following the successful completion of the grant agreement.

CityArts webinar recording from February 10, 2022:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply Online:

CityArts Small – General Operating Funds:

CityArtsLarge – General Operating Funds:

CityArts Project Grant:

For assistance in another language and/or if you are an individual with a disability and need a reasonable accommodation to apply, please contact for assistance.

Cultural Grant Staff Contact Information:
- Kalena Chevalier – Program Director:
- Julie Partynski - Grants Administrator:
- Meghan Beals – Grants Coordinator:
- Melissa Thomfohrda – Grants Coordinator:
- General Cultural Grants Contact:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Illinois: Chicago

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