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Arts for Community Engagement (ACE) Grant

Grants to New Hampshire Nonprofits, Agencies,
Schools, and IHEs for Community Arts Programs

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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New Hampshire State Council on the Arts (NHSCA)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

07/17/20 11:59 PM EST


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Grants of up to $7,500 to New Hampshire nonprofit organizations, government agencies, schools, and IHEs for a broad range of arts programming to benefit local communities. Funding is specifically intended to bring arts activities to underserved communities in the state. Eligible proposals should focus on community-based arts projects for adult and multi-generational participants.

The goals of this grant program are to promote community engagement and collaborative community partnerships, especially for people who are economically disadvantaged, underserved or marginalized; to stimulate local economies through cultural tourism and the arts; and to enhance the vibrancy of New Hampshire communities and quality of life for New Hampshire citizens. This grant category supports a wide range of activities including performances, concerts, exhibits, workshops, community arts programming, and collaborative public art projects that engage the arts and artists for the benefit of New Hampshire residents and communities.

Projects funded in this category should:

  • Have a clear focus on artistic excellence as a means to create vibrant community environments;
  • Engage people in a shared experience of the arts, which may include performances and/or participatory activities such as hands-on workshops, panel discussions, etc.;
  • Confer a clear benefit to the community and/or to individual participants;
  • When possible, include community partners to deepen the content and reach of the program;
  • Reduce or eliminate barriers to provide equitable opportunities for participation by diverse, economically disadvantaged, and underserved populations;
  • Feature New Hampshire artists and appropriately compensate them at a professional level.

Sample Projects

  • A series of public performances for the local farmers’ market or town center
  • An “Arts Walk” for downtown to coincide with local productions and a holiday celebration
  • A partnership with a local Main Street program, library, and historical society to create a community mural on a downtown building or a series of banners that reflect the history, cultural heritage, or landscape of the town
  • A performance featuring works by a New Hampshire composer or playwright that may be accompanied by an open rehearsal and/or public discussion tying the performance to a community theme or challenge

For information about funding criteria, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 179326

Estimated Size of Grant:

Funding requests may be made for $1,000 - $7,500.

Term of Contract:

Projects may occur between November 1, 2020 and October 31, 2021.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Any organization with 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status from the IRS and not-for-profit incorporation in the State of New Hampshire; state, federal, county, municipal, or government agency; school; or unit of a post-secondary educational institution may apply. Arts organization applicants must have at least a one-year history of arts programming prior to the application deadline.

All applicants must:
- Make their programs accessible to people with disabilities;
- Have submitted all required reports on past State Arts Council grants; and
- Be in good standing with the N.H. Secretary of State’s Office and the N.H. Attorney General’s Office.

Note: Organizations that are incorporated in a neighboring state of Maine, Vermont or Massachusetts, physically headquartered within 50 miles of the New Hampshire border, can demonstrate that over 50% of the individuals who benefit from their work are N.H. residents, and have a significant representation of N.H. residents on their Board, are also eligible.

To allow for broad distribution of public funds to benefit youth and to maximize funding of arts activities in New Hampshire communities, applying organizations may receive one grant in the following categories:
- Artist in Residence Grant(AIR)
- Arts for Community Engagement Grant
- Folklife and Traditional Arts Project Grant
- Public Value Partnership (Operating Grant)
- Youth Arts Project Grant (YAP)

This grant does not fund:
- Commercially viable "for-profit" publications, recordings, or films.
- General operating expenses not directly related to the project.
- Lobbying or fundraising expenses.
- Organizations or projects already receiving funds from another State Arts Council grant category
- Arts programs that do not require the participation of an on-site artist as a core element of the program
- Any cost item listed in the glossary under ineligible expenses:
- Projects/activities that are not open to the general public

Pre-proposal Conference:

Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend one of the State Arts Council’s grant information sessions. Each year, the NH State Council on the Arts offers grant information workshops. These sessions are designed for both new and former applicants.

NHSCA staff will present an overview of the State Arts Council's programs and the latest information on grants, including changes to the State Arts Council's grant guidelines and the services offered by the NH State Council on the Arts.

Currently scheduled workshops:
- Thursday, February 20, 2020, 1:00-2:00 pm, Rochester Performance and Arts Center, 32 North Main Street, Rochester
Register here:

- Tuesday, February 25, 2020, 12:00-1:30 pm, NH Forest & Lands North Country Resource Center, 629B Main Street, Lancaster
Register here:

- Wednesday, March 4, 2020, 11:30 am-12:30 pm, The Library Arts Center, 58 North Main Street, Newport
Register here:

- Thursday, March 5, 2020, 1:00-2:00 pm, Currier Museum of Art, 150 Ash Street, Manchester
Register here:

Please click here for the workshop schedule and registration links:

Pre-Application Information:

The deadline for this application is 11:59 PM, July 17, 2020.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend one of the State Arts Council’s grant information sessions and discuss their proposals with the appropriate grant coordinator before writing and submitting applications.

Drafts of narrative questions and budgets may be reviewed if submitted by email at least two weeks in advance of the application deadline. First time applicants are especially encouraged to submit drafts.

Award notification may take up to 10 weeks after the application deadline.

Grants must be matched on a one-to-one basis with a minimum of 50% cash match and up to 50% in-kind. NHSCA funds cannot be matched by other awards from the NHSCA or National Endowment for the Arts.

Cash match can include the percentage of time applied to the project by salaried employees of the organization (staff and administrators). When applicants provide materials and equipment needed for the project, the cost of these may be included in the budget as cash match. In-kind contributions will also be considered by the reviewers as evidence of support and commitment by the community and/or partner organization.

Contact Information:

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

Apply Online:

For questions about the grant program, please contact:
Lisa Burk-McCoy, Grant Coordinator
(603) 271-0794

For accessibility accommodation requests including alternate formats, please contact:
Cassandra Mason

For questions about the online application system at Submittable, please contact:
855-467-8264, ext 2

New Hampshire State Council on the Arts
Van McLeod Building
19 Pillsbury Street, 1st Floor
Concord, New Hampshire 03301
(603) 271-2789

URL for Full Text (RFP):

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USA: New Hampshire

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