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Cultural Grants Program - Operating Grants

Grants to Vancouver, British Columbia Arts and
Cultural Nonprofits for General Organizational Support

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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City of Vancouver

Deadline Date:

12/06/17 4:00 PM


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Grants starting at $20,000 to Vancouver, British Columbia nonprofit arts and cultural organizations for general operating support. Applicants must contact program staff to discuss eligibility prior to applying. This program provides consistent and reliable support to qualifying organizations so they may carry out programs and services that sustain a dynamic arts community.

This program is for Vancouver-based, established professional nonprofit arts and cultural organizations that have a mission to develop, create, produce, present and disseminate artistic work or who provide professional umbrella services or space for the benefit of the arts sector, in any artistic discipline (Aboriginal arts, community arts, dance, interdisciplinary, literary, media, multidisciplinary, music, theatre, visual arts).

The program is for organizations that are mature in their lifecycle stage, have a clear and relevant mission guided by long-term goals and strategies. They generally have been incorporated and operating for at least five years, have well-established programs or services that are well-developed and delivered with consistency and are artistically strong with proven impact in the community. There is full-time paid professional leadership (artistic and administrative), well-developed administrative structures, stable financial resources and planning, and a Board of Directors who set direction, are policy-oriented, and support management to lead operations.

Your organization may apply for this grant if your project is to:
-Produce or curate a single show, or a time-limited series of arts and cultural events or programs;
-Collaborate with professional artists and community members to creatively address local interests and issues;
-Deliver shared services and resources;
-Develop conferences, residencies, or mentorships that benefit artists, organizations, and the public;
-Create outdoor projects approved by the City.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 165219

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grant amounts generally range from $20,000 - $100,000.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

You can apply for this grant if your organization is a Vancouver-based:
-Professional non-profit society
-Community service co-op legally registered with BC Registry Services
-Registered charity with the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA)

To receive funding, your organization must:
-Have received at least two consecutive Project or Annual Assistance Grants from Cultural Services
-Be physically located, have an active presence, and deliver programs and services in the City of Vancouver
-Have an established body of high-quality work or services that are consistently delivered and in-demand
-Have an independent, volunteer-run board of directors that represents your mission and people served, where directors: meet the minimum articles of respective governing acts (BC Society Act, BC Cooperative Service Act for Community Service Coops, or the Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act); function in a governance role and be active in policy, planning, legal and fiduciary responsibilities; aren’t paid (except for reasonable expenses they incur); and don’t fulfill other staff roles at the same time;
-Employ at least one paid, full-time, and professional artistic and administrative leader
-Use well-developed administrative systems, including communications, financial, and human resources
-Have diverse, stable financial resources and practices with: sustained average annual cash budget of generally over $300,000; diversified cash resources (earned, private, and public); independently-prepared financial statements (audit or review engagement); and compensate professional artists at standard rates.

Not Funded:
-Organizations that don't have arts and cultural mandates;
-Organizations that exclude certain people or groups because of their religion, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation, language, disability, or income;
-Publicly or privately funded educational institutions;
-Social service, religious, or sports organizations and clubs;
-Other City of Vancouver departments and branches, including community centers;
-Organizations and activity outside Vancouver city limits.

Ineligible Organizations and Activity:
-Publicly funded or private educational institutions (public schools, universities, colleges, training organizations);
-Organizations that do not have arts and cultural mandates or whose proposed activity does not meet the Program Objectives and Eligibility;
-Other City of Vancouver departments and branches including community centers;
-Social Service, Religious, Sports organizations or clubs;
-Core artistic training;
-Capital proposals;
-Organizations and activity outside Vancouver city limits;
-Fundraising activity;
-Bursaries or scholarships;
-Contests or competitions.

Pre-Application Information:

Applicants must first contact Cultural Services for referral to a cultural planner by to:

-Discuss your organization and project's eligibility
-Request an Operating Grants application form
-Receive valuable advice

If awarded, payments will be made mid-to-late April.

Contact Information:

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

Cherryl Masters, Cultural Planner

City of Vancouver Cultural Services
Suite 501 – 111 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC V6B 1H4

Grant Coverage Areas:

Organizations and activities must be within Vancouver city limits.

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: British Columbia;

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