Gilmore Foundation Grants - NYC Communities/ NYC Dance

Mertz Gilmore Foundation

Grant amount: Up to US $120,000

Next anticipated deadline: Jan 19, 2019 (Letter of inquiry)

Later anticipated deadlines: Aug 17, 2019 (Letter of inquiry)

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Applied Project / Program

Location of project: Counties in New York: Bronx County, Kings County, New York County, Queens County, Richmond County

Location of residency: Counties in New York: Bronx County, Kings County, New York County, Queens County, Richmond County

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About the Foundation

The Mertz Gilmore Foundation is a private, independent grantmaking institution that supports and promotes vibrant communities, the performing arts, and a sustainable environment. The Foundation uses a variety of philanthropic strategies to strengthen civic and cultural institutions in underserved communities of New York City and to address the climate crisis.

Today, with assets of roughly $100 million, Mertz Gilmore continues a five decade tradition of focused grantmaking on a small number of programs while maintaining relatively long-term commitments to its core areas of concern. 

The following program areas currently accept unsolicited proposals:

NYC Communities

The economic downturn continues to be felt in the city’s underserved communities in numerous ways, including: disappearing jobs, rising health care costs as a share of income, home foreclosures, less affordable housing, and vulnerability to abusive practices in the low-income workplace. Faced with daunting challenges, community groups throughout the city use a variety of methods, including grassroots organizing and advocacy, to address human needs and strengthen communities. Often, such groups take on multiple issues, recognizing the connections between community problems, and work in partnership with other non-profit organizations and city agencies.

To support these efforts and to promote an equitable and sustainable city of vibrant communities, the Mertz Gilmore Foundation supports work in low-income neighborhoods that emerges from, and actively engages, local efforts while looking for opportunities to support collaborative campaigns.

Across all funding categories, the Foundation will consider the ability of organizations to work with and leverage funds from other foundations and city, state, and federal government agencies, where appropriate.

Technical assistance providers

 The Foundation will provide funding to a select number of supporting organizations to provide assistance in such areas as law, planning, analysis, or advocacy assistance to help neighborhood groups achieve community aspirations. This could also include connecting community organizations working on similar issues in order to influence policy, scale up programs, or expand networks of activism. Priority will be given to inquiries that address the specific needs of the Foundation’s community-based partners, especially those working on issues of economic and environmental justice. Inquiries can be submitted by the technical assistance provider, but we encourage joint submissions.

Collaborative campaigns

The Foundation will support a limited number of collaborative campaigns. Priority will be given to inquiries from a coalition or network uniting around a common problem or issue and designed to achieve its goals in 1-2 years. Grants may also be considered for campaigns by a single organization working with partners. 

NYC Dance

The New York City Dance program sustains a high level of activity and visibility for dance in the city, and cultivates a rich mix of artists and audiences.

The Mertz Gilmore Foundation has an extensive history of supporting dance in the city, reflecting Joyce Mertz Gilmore’s passion for dance. The Joyce Theater in Chelsea is named in her honor. Mertz Gilmore was one of the first foundations to recognize the key role that presenters play in the dance field – providing artists with technical and promotional support, commissioning pieces, staging works-in-progress, mounting full performance seasons, educating audiences through outreach programs, and developing a vital distribution network for live performance. The Foundation continues to fund contemporary dance presenters located throughout the city’s five boroughs. Our objective remains to support and invigorate the presenting field to serve New York City’s artists and audiences.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Applicants must be nonprofit organizations as classified under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service Code.


  • NYC Dance: The Foundation will not make grants for individual artists or companies, or organizations based outside of New York City. 
  • The Foundation does not accept proposals for:
    • Individuals
    • Endowments, annual fund appeals or fundraising events
    • Conferences, workshops
    • Sectarian religious concerns
    • Scholarships, fellowships, research, loans, or travel
    • Film or media projects
    • Publications