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Partnership Grants
 
PDF—Guidelines

PDF—How to Apply

The Partnership Grant program provides much-needed unrestricted operating funds to arts organizations and establishes a process for partnering with the Maine Arts Commission to advance the role of the arts in strengthening communities and enhancing local economies. As part of this program, Maine Arts Commission Partners are required to provide impact numbers as they increase audience engagement throughout the state. The funding cycle for this program is July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018 and the next application deadline is March 23, 2017.

 

REMINDER!

Partnership applicants at ALL levels need to complete, as part of the application, a Cultural Data Profile at Data Arts.

For more information on what a cultural data profile is; how it will benefit your organization in addition to our Partnership Grant application process; and how to get started go to

http://culturaldata.org/what-we-do/for-arts-cultural-organizations/.

IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT PARTNERSHIP APPLICATION RESTRICTIONS:

Please be aware that qualified organizations cannot accept, if awarded, both a Partnership Grant and a Project Grant for Organizations or an Organizational Development Grant in the same year. An applicant may also not receive both an Organizational Development and Project Grant for Organizations. Applicants are welcome to apply to all grant programs in a cycle, but will then need to choose if multiple grants across these programs are awarded. Grant awardees in any of these three programs ARE eligible to receive Arts Learning Grants and the Creative Communities = Economic Development grants during the same cycle.

 

 

Application Deadline: March 23, 2017 at 5 p.m.

Maximum Award:

 

·     Bronze Tier—up to $7,500

·     Silver Tier—up to $10,000

·     Gold Tier—up to $15,000

This program provides major funding for Maine’s arts and cultural organizations to enter into partnership with the Maine Arts Commission.

 

There is a required 1:1 in-kind or cash match for this grant.

 

This funding cycle for the program is July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018.

 

 

 

 

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS Your organization is eligible to apply if it meets all of the following criteria:

 

·    Is a professional Maine cultural organization, legally established and located in the state of  Maine.

·    Has a 501(c)(3) tax exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service.

·    Has a history of at least three years of programming.

·    Has received and successfully managed a Maine Arts Commission grant within the past five years.

·    Is in compliance with final reports required for any previous Maine Arts Commission  awards received.

 Funding Tier Eligibility:

 

BUDGET SIZE

MINIMUM STAFF REQUIREMENT

AUDIT/990

GRANT RECIPIENT W/IN PAST 5 YEARS

CURRENT STRATEGIC PLAN

504/ADA CHECKLIST

MINIMUM OF THREE YRS PROGRAMMING

 BRONZE TIER

$50,000 to $499,999

One FTE

990

x

x

x

x

 SILVER TIER

$500,000 to $999,999

Two FTE

AUDIT

x

x

x

x

 GOLD TIER

Over

$1 million

Three FTE

AUDIT

x

x

x

x

 

Multidisciplinary or multipurpose organizations, including arts organizations embedded in universities and colleges, are eligible if they demonstrate that the arts comprise at least 50% of the organization’s programming and if they have an independent advisory board or council. Universities or Colleges in their entirety, or individual departments, may not apply.

A fiscal agent may not serve as an applicant for this program. The applicant becomes legally accountable for complying with the above eligibility requirements upon submission of this request.

 

APPLICATION PACKAGE REQUIREMENTS

A completed application in the Grants Management System (GMS) for the Partnership Grant must contain:

 

ONLINE

  • Completed answers to all five narrative prompts in the GMS (https://mainearts-grants.maine.gov/account/login).
  • A current Strategic Plan.
  • Staff and Board lists, including affiliations.
  • Completed DataArts Funders' Report. For more information on what a DataArts profile is, how it will benefit your organization in addition to our Partnership Grant application process, and how to get started go to http://culturaldata.org/what-we-do/for-arts-cultural-organizations/.
  • Financial Documents in addition to the Funders' Report: an organization with an annual income of $50,000-$499,999 must include its most currently completed Form 990. An organization with an annual income of $500,000 and over must include its most recently completed organizational financial audit.
  • Completed National Endowment for the Arts Brief Accessibility Checklist.

 

BY MAIL OR FAX

  • Completed vendor form with exactly the same name and contact information as used in your application.
  • Completed and signed assurances form.  

 

OPTIONAL 

To provide a snapshot of the quality of your organization and or/work it is suggested that you provide no fewer than two and no more than five artistic samples. Samples may be any combination of:

  • Images (up to five)
  • Audio or Video (no more than 15 minutes in length)
  • Prose or Poetry (no more than 5 pages in length)
  • Reviews
  • Marketing Materials
  • One to Three Letters of Support  

For additional information about artist samples, click here.

The Maine Arts Commission reserves the right to use submitted materials in the non-commercial promotion of the artist, organization and/or Maine Arts Commission programs.  

 

APPLICATION NARRATIVE (All character counts include spaces. 2,550 characters/page)

1.   Introduce us to your organization. Include an overview that includes your mission, history, audiences, region and demographic served. (1,915 characters max.)

2.   Provide an overview of your artistic and educational programming. Describe in detail three of your programs. What is the major artistic discipline represented by your organization? If you characterize your work as multidisciplinary, please describe that in detail. From where do you draw the artists you engage? How do you aspire to achieve artistic merit in these and other programs? (2,550 characters max.)

3.   Share with us how you serve your community. Tell us about two of your community-oriented programs. Who are the underserved communities that you work with and serve? Do you have plans to expand your audience? If so, how? How do you serve special needs audiences, including people with disabilities? How do you serve and/or reach culturally diverse populations? (1,195 characters max.)

4.   Tell us how you manage your organization. Discuss your board governance and committee structure and how they provide organizational oversight. Describe your process for strategic planning: who has been involved and how often do you update your plan? How many staff members do you have? (Include the titles of positions and whether they are full- or part-time.) Provide a marketing strategy. Provide an overview of your development (fundraising) strategy. What organizational policies do you have in place? (2,550 characters max.)

5.   Describe your fiscal health. What are the major financial challenges, accomplishments or changes that you have faced within the past year and any that you foresee in the coming year? Identify specific sources of revenue that account for 25% or more of your total revenue. Articulate the sources of any deficit and your plans for resolving that deficit to balance your financial statement. Provide any additional information that you think will help clarify your financial situation. (2,550 characters max.)

 

INELIGIBLE EXPENSES

Grant awards may not be re-granted nor used to cover the costs of brick-and-mortar projects, permanent or capital equipment, or fundraising  

 

APPLICATION REVIEW CRITERIA

Partnership Grant applications are reviewed on a competitive basis using the following criteria:

 

Quality of the applicant’s strategic plan

20%

Strength of the organization’s arts programming, including effort to address arts education and special needs audiences as well as its community impact and relevance.

30%

Ability of the applying organization to manage itself (including staff and board structure, planning, and marketing and fundraising plans and methodologies.)

25%

State of the organization’s fiscal stability as evidenced by its financial statements and budget.

25%

 

REVIEW PROCESS

Applications are reviewed by a panel of public members selected for their expertise in cultural organizational management. Panel members may be drawn from out of state.

 

All grant recommendations are presented to Maine Arts Commission members who approve the review process, making the grant official.

 

The review process and delivery of funds may take up to six months. This means that grant funds may be used to reimburse costs which have been incurred for the project after the grant has been approved but prior to funds being disbursed. Please plan accordingly.

 

GENERAL QUESTIONS 

For questions about the Partnership Grant application or the review process, contact Kathy Ann Shaw, Senior Director for Grants and Arts Accessibility, at kathy.shaw@maine.gov or 207-287-2750.