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Lowcountry Artistic Vitality Grant

Grants to South Carolina Arts Nonprofits and Arts
Councils for General Operating Support and Assistance

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation (GDDF)

Deadline Date:

07/31/20 11:59 PM Central Time


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Grants to South Carolina nonprofit arts organizations and councils to provide general operating support and other forms of assistance to strengthen the local arts ecosystem. Applicants must contact program staff prior to applying. Eligible organizations are located in the following counties: Horry, Georgetown, Berkeley, Dorchester, Colleton, Charleston, Hampton, Jasper, and Beaufort Counties.

Lowcountry Artistic Vitality:
The Foundation supports a wide spectrum of arts groups that reflect the vitality and diversity of the Lowcountry. The Foundation provides general operations grants to arts organizations and county arts councils, as well as other assistance to support, strengthen and connect the Lowcountry arts ecosystem.

Support Across The Lowcountry:
Charleston is the hub of Lowcountry arts, from its vibrant, locally produced music, theater, and dance to its internationally-heralded festivals. Year round, dozens of arts organizations are creating new works, not only on the Peninsula but in adjacent communities from West Ashley to Summerville to Park Circle.

Beyond Charleston, artistic expression highlights the rich cultural fabric of the Lowcountry in many different ways, with small professional arts organizations in towns such as Georgetown and Beaufort and county arts councils from Horry to Hampton providing outlets for arts and culture in their communities. Gullah arts organizations are also protecting and preserving the iconic and endangered expression of the traditions and experiences of the African-American culture.

To Support With Few Restrictions:
Unrestricted general operations grants are the lifeblood of arts organizations, big or small. It allows them the flexibility to spend those dollars where they see the greatest need or opportunity. The Foundation targets its funding to arts organizations across the nine counties whose primary focus is making and sharing art in all its forms, rather than arts education. The Foundation currently places no limit on the budget size of an organization.

To Strengthen Arts Organizations:
Need help with QuickBooks? Want to take a board development workshop? Each of the arts groups the Foundation supports with general operations grants will be eligible for additional grant support per calendar year as opportunities are available for classes, workshops, etc., that help them address specific organizational needs.

To Connect the Arts Ecosystem:
The Foundation believes that it’s important to not only support the arts but to help foster a larger network, from state and local governments to businesses, to also play a role in the success of the arts community. The Foundation will continue to meet with and sometimes convene diverse stakeholders to build consensus on common priorities for the arts, and provide opportunities for artists to continue to connect with each other.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 179537

Estimated Size of Grant:

Professional arts organizations are eligible for general operations grant amounts based on annual expenses for the most recently completed calendar or fiscal year:

-Annual Expenses of $0 - $100,000: Grant Amount of $5,000
-Annual Expenses of $100,000 - $400,000: Grant Amount of $10,000
-Annual Expenses of $400,000 - $750,000: Grant Amount of $15,000
-Annual Expenses of $750,000 - $1,000,000: Grant Amount of $20,000
-Annual Expenses of $1,000,000 and above: Grant Amount of $25,000

Arts Councils are also eligible for general operations grant amounts based on annual expenses:

-Annual Expenses of $0 - $50,000: Grant Amount of $5,000
-Annual Expenses of $50,000 - $100,000: Grant Amount of $10,000
-Annual Expenses of $100,000 - $200,000: Grant Amount of $20,000
-Annual Expenses of $200,000 - $500,000: Grant Amount of $25,000

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

New Applicants
-You must be a 501(c)(3) public charity.
-You must be in compliance with your Secretary of State.
-You must have completed at least one full fiscal year of operations.
-You must demonstrate or strongly promise artistic vitality. Determining artistic vitality is subjective. The Foundation takes into account how much programming an organization offers and the degree of professionalism, factoring in the artistic discipline, budget size, location, and where an organization happens to be in its evolution.

The following are not eligible
-Organizations with a mission primarily focused on arts education or social service.
-Religious activities, political campaigns, or legislative lobbying.
-Stand-alone conferences, publications, films, events, websites, or videos.
-Endowments, capital projects, facilities -building campaigns, or debt reduction.

Pre-Application Information:

The Foundation must see your work before it can consider a grant. Please contact program staff as soon as you know your performance schedule and let them know that you're planning to apply.

If you are applying for the first time or are a first-time arts service organization - one that supports arts organizations, rather than individual artists - please contact program staff before starting an application.

Your complete proposal must be submitted online by 11:59 pm Central Time on
- April 10, 2020 for review at the July 2020 board meeting, or
- July 31, 2020 for review at the November 2020 board meeting

It takes about four months from grant application deadline through board decision. After the board meeting, you will hear from staff by email within a couple weeks.


Contact Information:

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

Apply Online:

If you have questions about eligibility or other aspects of Lowcountry Artistic Vitality grants, contact Grants & Admin Assistant, Ame Holcombe at 843.277.2041 or

Lowcountry Office
4 North Atlantic Wharf
Charleston, South Carolina 29401-2168

Grant Coverage Areas:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: South Carolina: Horry, Georgetown, Berkeley, Dorchester, Colleton, Charleston, Hampton, Jasper, and Beaufort Counties

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