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Organizational Development (OD) Grant

Grants to California Arts Nonprofits and Agencies for
Consulting Services to Build Organizational Capacity

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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California Arts Council (CAC)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

11/01/19 11:59 PM


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Grants of up to $5,000 to California nonprofit arts organizations, local arts-based agencies, and tribal units of government for consulting services to build organizational capacity for success and sustainability. Eligible activities may include strategic planning, audits, public relations, earned income strategies, financial management and budgeting, board development, program evaluation, software implementation, and web design.

The Organizational Development grant program advances California through the arts and creativity by providing practical services and resources to arts organizations. This program is rooted in the CAC’s role in building a strong foundation for the arts in our state and the belief that best practices, quality research, and emerging models inform our work to provide the highest quality of service to Californians and their communities. The purpose of the Organizational Development grant is to fund one-time consulting activities to build arts and cultural organizations’ capacity for sustainability and success.

Examples of consultant activities may include:

  • Audits
  • Earned income strategies
  • Financial management and budgeting
  • Strategic planning
  • Board development
  • Public relations
  • Program evaluation
  • Software implementation
  • Web design

Projects should address the following Organizational Development program goals:

  • Increase access to best practices in nonprofit and public sector management.
  • Strengthen the operations of the applicant organization.
  • Demonstrate ability to advance the applicant’s organizational mission.
  • Develop and strengthen California’s arts and culture workforce.

Given the increased competitiveness of the grant program, priority may be given to applicants that:

  • Operate with budgets of $500,000 or under
  • Did not receive an Organizational Development grant in FY18-19

For details on program requirements, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 170200

Estimated Size of Grant:

- Applicant organizations can request up to $5,000.
- The total request for funding in this grant program cannot exceed 50% of an organization’s total operating revenue from the most recently completed fiscal year, as provided on the Budget Snapshot at the time of application.

Term of Contract:

Grant Activity Period: July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021

The applicant must develop and complete a project addressing the program’s purpose by June 30, 2021.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

- Applicants must either be a California-based nonprofit arts organization, artsbased unit of municipal or county government, or tribal government.
- All applicants must have a minimum two-year history of consistent engagement in arts programming and/or services prior to the application deadline.
- All applicant organizations must have a principal place of business in California.
- Applicant organizations must demonstrate proof of nonprofit status under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or section 23701d of the California Revenue and Taxation Code, or must be a unit of government, including California Native American or Indigenous tribal governments. 2019-20 CAC OD Program Guidelines |
- Fiscal Sponsors: An applicant without nonprofit status may use a California-based Fiscal Sponsor with a federal 501(c)(3) designation to conduct work on a not-for-profit project. The Fiscal Sponsor will provide the fiscal and administrative services needed to complete the grant. If a grant is awarded, the Fiscal Sponsor becomes the legal contractor.

Nonprofit organizations must have “active status” with the California Secretary of State
(SOS) showing evidence of “good standing” at the time of application.

Funding restrictions:

What the CAC Does Not Fund:

Pre-proposal Conference:

California Arts Council: 2019-20 Grant Programs Overview
Tue, Sep 24, 2019 9:00 PM - 10:00 PM EEST

Learn how to apply for state arts funding! In this one-hour webinar, staff will provide an overview of the CAC's unique grant opportunities for 2019-20, with deadlines coming this fall. Get tips and insights into the state grant process and discover best practices for putting together a successful application. An archived video of this session will be published to the California Arts Council website within 24 hours following the webinar.

Register now for the 2019-20 Grant Programs Overview webinar:

Click here to schedule a 15-minute phone consultation with Maya Austin, Arts Program Specialist:

Pre-Application Information:


- November 1, 2019 11:59 PM Application deadline (online)
- January 2020 Funding decisions
- January 2020 Funding notifications
- July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021 Grant Activity Period
- July 31, 2021 Final Report deadline

CAC staff is available to offer guidance and clarification in preparing your proposal. CAC recommends that you contact staff well in advance of the deadline to ensure you can be accommodated.

Application resources:

Contact Information:

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

Apply online:

Maya Austin, M.A., Arts Program Specialist
(916) 322-6584

California Arts Council
1300 I Street, Suite 930
Sacramento, CA 95814

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: California