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Project Support II Grant Program

Grants to Ohio Nonprofits in Eligible Areas
for Arts and Culture Projects and Activities

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Cuyahoga Arts and Culture (CAC)

Conf. Date:


LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

08/06/20 4:30 PM


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Grants of up to $5,000 to Ohio nonprofit organizations in eligible locations for arts and culture projects and events. Applicants must submit an eligibility check prior to applying. Funding is intended to support activities within a range of program areas, including literature, theater, music, dance, ballet, painting, sculpture, photography, motion pictures, architecture, archaeology, history, natural history, or the natural sciences. Eligible programs must be open to the public and conducted in Cuyahoga County.

Organizations that do not have a primary mission that is arts and culture are encouraged to apply (community development corporations, social service organizations, etc.), as long as the proposed project meets CAC’s definition of arts and culture.

A project is a specific, connected set of activities, with a beginning and an end, explicit goals or objectives and a predetermined cost that does not equal the organization’s total annual budget. Projects may be one-time events, such as a festival or exhibit, or a defined series of events, such as a roster of classes or a series of productions. Projects with multiple components must show that there is a cohesive theme that ties the project together. 

Panelists scores each application based on the Funding Criteria, with an emphasis on public benefit. As a reminder, the three Funding Criteria are as follows: 

  • Public Benefit: An organization’s ability to successfully engage its community through its project. 
  • Artistic and Cultural Vibrancy: An organization’s ability to create a fresh and exciting project. 
  • Organizational Capacity: An organization’s ability to successfully plan for and manage its project.

For additional information about funding criteria, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 157334

Estimated Size of Grant:

The request amount may not exceed $5,000 or 50% of the proposed project’s total expenses.

Term of Contract:

January 1 through December 31, 2021

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Applicant must:
- Be a 501c3 organization not serving as a fiscal sponsor or agent.
- Have a permanent/viable base in Cuyahoga County for at least 1 year.
- Be incorporated and authorized to do business in Ohio as verified by the Secretary of State.
- Have produced or presented arts and/or cultural program(s) open to the public within the previous two years.

CAC strongly encourages applicants who are from communities that have been historically excluded or marginalized.

The following types of organizations are not eligible to apply to the 2021 Project Support II grant program (this list is not exhaustive):
- Organizations that have extended their 2020 Project Support grant into 2021;
- Organizations that are not in good standing with CAC and/or in compliance with previous grants;
- Organizations that are serving as fiscal agents or fiscal sponsors for an organization or program;
- Religious institutions without a separate 501c3 organization that specifically administers non-sectarian public programming;
- Private non-operating foundations;
- Units of government;
- K-12 schools, including parent-teacher associations and similar groups;
- Individuals
- Fundraising organizations, such as “Friends Of” groups who do not conduct their own programming

Additionally, organizations receiving General Operating Support or applying for a Project Support I grant from CAC are not eligible to apply for Project Support II funding in the same grant cycle.

Please note: Colleges and universities are eligible only for activities that clearly serve the needs of the community and are designed to involve a broad audience. Activities that are credit-producing or are oriented primarily to collegiate students and the academic community are not eligible.

Project Support II funds cannot be requested for: operating support; fundraising events; religious ceremonies or events advancing or inhibiting a particular religious ideology; or advocacy of specific political causes or candidates.

Restricted uses of CAC funds include but are not limited to:
- Credit-bearing academic programs (K-12 and college level)
- Activities that are not open to the general public
- General operating support or operating expenses not directly related to the project
- Fundraising or benefits
- Regranting, scholarships, tuition assistance, awards or cash prizes
- Deficit reduction or elimination, trust endowments, cash reserves, penalty or litigation fees, loans, or interest on loans
- Capital improvements, facilities or equipment
- Religious ceremonies or events advancing or inhibiting a particular religious ideology
- Cost of receptions, food and beverages
- Agent’s fees for programs contracted through commercial agencies
- Travel outside of the United States
- Advocacy of specific political causes or candidates.

Pre-proposal Conference:

CAC will offer a variety of technical assistance webinars in advance of the application deadline. While workshops are not required, CAC strongly encourages and invites all eligible applicants to participate.

May 6, 2020 from 12-1 p.m.
Grant Programs Webinar for New Applicants
Learn more:

June 11, 2020
Grant Programs Virtual Q&A Sessions
Learn more:

June 17, 2020 from 12-1 p.m.
Application Webinar

July 8 and July 23, 2020
Application Virtual Q&A Sessions (virtual)

Pre-Application Information:

First-time applicants to CAC grant programs are encouraged to schedule an informational meeting with CAC staff before the eligibility check deadline. To schedule a meeting, please contact a program manager.

- Eligibility Check Deadline: June 25, 2020 by 4:30 p.m.
- Application Deadline: August 6, 2020 by 4:30 p.m.
- Grants approved by CAC Board of Trustees: November 2020

The eligibility check is the first step in applying for a Project Support grant for all applicants and is submitted via CAC’s online application and reporting system. CAC strongly recommends that you begin your eligibility check and online application well before the due date to familiarize yourself with the system and to address any technical concerns.

Once your organization has been deemed eligible, the primary contact on file will receive an email providing access to the online Project Support II application. The earlier you submit the eligibility
check, the sooner you will have access to the online application.

This program requires a 1:1 match by the applicant. Up to 50% of your organization’s matching funds can come from in-kind contributions.

Review process:

Panel review audio:

Panel results and comments:

Contact Information:

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

Online application:

Dan McLaughlin
216.515.8303 x 101

Luis Gomez
216-515-8303 x 106

Heather Johnson-Banks
216-515-8303 x 108

For technical assistance:
India Pierre-Ingram
216.515.8303 x 107

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Ohio: Cuyahoga County

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