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Capacity Building Grant

Grants to Iowa Small Arts and Cultural
Nonprofits for Organizational Operations

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs - Iowa Arts Council

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

05/01/19 11:59 PM


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Grants of $5,000 to Iowa nonprofit and governmental arts and cultural organizations for general operating expenses. Funding is intended to provide organizational support that will enable the organization to further its mission. Eligible applicants are those that have annual operating expenses of $10,000 to $150,000, have been in operation for at least three years, and conduct activities year-round.

The Capacity Building Grant provides general operating support to arts and cultural organizations that demonstrate an exemplary record of cultural and managerial excellence and community service on a continuing basis to the citizens of Iowa. Funds are provided to support the mission of a nonprofit rather than to support specific projects or programs.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 179805

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grant recipients will be awarded $5,000.

Term of Contract:

Grant funds must be used for expenses incurred within the eligible funding period of July 1, 2019 – June 30, 2020.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligibility Requirements:

1. Organizational Eligibility

Applicants must identify as an Arts Organization or a Cultural Organization, and have been in existence for more than 3 years:
- Arts Organizations: Primary mission and purpose must be the arts*
- Cultural Organizations: Primary mission and purpose must be cultural*

* For definitions of the terms “arts” and “cultural,” see the Glossary listed in Supporting Documents below.

2. Type of Entity - Applicants must be legally organized as one of the following types of organizations:

- Organization that is incorporated in Iowa under the Iowa Nonprofit Corporation Act and holds federal 501(c)3 tax-exempt status.
- Arts or cultural department or division of a municipal government that is also incorporated in Iowa under the Iowa Nonprofit Corporation Act (does not include libraries, parks or recreation departments).

3. Operational Standards

- Organization has operating expenses, exclusive of Iowa Arts Council/Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs general operating support, of $10,000 to $150,000 per year.
- Organization operates year-round on a continuous basis for 12 months of the year. Organization's facilities, programs and services are available to Iowans at least 1,040 hours per year.
- Organization has a minimum of one dedicated staff or volunteer position that works for the organization year round and is responsible for oversight and management of the organization.
- Organization has been in existence since May 1, 2016.
- Organization located in a border community may be eligible under the Border State Policy.

4. Accessibility- Americans with Disabilities Act

Organization must demonstrate that it is in compliance or actively working to be in compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). These laws prohibit discrimination against individuals with physical and/or mental disabilities. Both programmatic and structural accessibility must be addressed.

5. Strategic Plan

Organization must have a current multi-year strategic plan or be in the process of renewing an existing plan. Strategic plan is defined as a document developed and used by the organization to align its organization and budget structure with organizational priorities, mission, goals and objectives.

Ineligible Applicants:

- Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs grantees with an outstanding final report or placement on a department funding moratorium
- Iowa Arts Council administered grantees who have already received a grant for the current application funding period
- Organization that uses a fiscal agent or the Iowa nonprofit or federal tax-exempt status of another organization
- For-profit corporation or business, religious organization, political party or national service/professional organization
- Auditorium, convention center or similar type of venue
- Educational institution, organization or pre-K through 12 school, whose primary orientation, mission and purpose is education and the awarding of academic credits

Ineligible Use of Funds:

- Budget shortfalls
- Capital expenditures, including equipment over a total of $5,000 per unit
- Deficit or debt reduction
- Donations or contributions
- Expenses incurred prior to or after the funding period
- Foreign travel
- Fundraising or benefit
- Lobbying activity
- Prizes and awards
- Religious activity

Pre-proposal Conference:

The FY2020 Capacity Building Grant Webinar is scheduled for Tuesday, January 22, 2019, 2:00PM - 3:00 PM CST.
During this live information webinar, applicants will learn about:

- Timelines and deadlines
- Eligibility
- Program priorities
- Program support
- Grant award amounts and match requirements
- Application requirements and scoring
- Applying online

For information and registration:

Pre-Application Information:


- Fiscal Year 2020 Application Deadline: May 1, 2019 at 11:59 PM.
- Funding Notification: Applicants will be notified of funding decisions within 8 weeks of the application deadline.
- Final Report Deadline: Grant recipients are required to complete a final report by August 1, 2020.

Applicants must submit applications via the online application portal.

- No more than one application per applicant can be submitted during a single grant deadline.
- No more than two applications for the same project may be submitted regardless of fiscal year if both applications are unfunded.
- Projects may not receive more than one Iowa Arts Council administered grant regardless of applicant or fiscal year.

Contact Information:

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

Online application portal:

Please address questions well in advance of the application deadline to:

Jennie Knoebel, Arts Learning Manager

Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs
State Historical Building
600 E. Locust St.
Des Moines, IA 50319

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Iowa