Small Arts & Culture Grants

Oregon Community Foundation

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Grant amount: US $1,000 - US $5,000

Deadline: May 15, 2019 5:00pm PDT

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: General Operating Expense

Location of project: Oregon

Location of residency: Oregon

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About this funder:




A 2014 survey revealed that of the 1,884 registered arts and culture nonprofit organizations in Oregon, 61% have budgets under $100,000. Although these organizations are central to the vitality of Oregon’s communities, they are often not eligible or competitive for traditional grant programs.

In response to this need, Oregon Community Foundation (OCF) announces the 6th year of the Small Arts & Culture Grants Program. Over the next three years, (2019-2021), OCF will invest $350,000 annually to support small community-driven arts and culture organizations.

One-year grants of $1,000 to $5,000 for general operating support will be available to arts and culture organizations with operating budgets under $100,000. Funds are being allocated to each of Oregon’s eight regions based on population and the number of applications received from each region.

Applications for this grant program will be reviewed by volunteers representing each region of Oregon and decisions will be made independently in those regions. The application process and reporting requirements are designed to be relatively simple to acknowledge that many small organizations are run by volunteers with little staffing infrastructure or grant writing expertise. 

Scope of Proposals Sought

The intent of the Small Arts & Culture Grants Program is to support a wide range of cultural and artistic organizations that enrich the lives of Oregonians and Oregon communities. The current three-year grant initiative will continue to focus on general operating support to allow organizations to dictate how to best use funds to advance their mission. Operating support grants are intended to support the core, ongoing operations and programs of an organization. This includes, but is not limited to: staffing, administration, outreach, marketing, overhead, and/or programming expenses.

Regional Distribution of Grants

OCF funds nonprofits across eight regions in Oregon, each advised by a volunteer Leadership Council. Members of OCF Leadership Councils and other volunteers will review and make recommendations for Small Arts & Culture Grants. Organizations must apply via the regional application for the region in which they primarily operate.

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


  • In order to be eligible organizations must:The purpose of the 2019 Small Arts and Culture Grant cycle is to make funds available to small organizations for operating expenses. To be eligible organizations must:
    • Be incorporated with a mission identifying arts and/or culture as a priority reason for the organization’s existence
    • Be a certified 501(c)3 tax exempt organization in good standing with the IRS
    • Be headquartered in Oregon
    • Document that the cash expenses of the organization during the most recently completed fiscal year were less than $100,000
    • Submit a complete grant application online through OCF’s website
    • Be prepared to use the awarded funds completely within one year of receipt
    • Submit only one application per year for no less than $1,000 and no more than $5,000
  • For this grant program, eligible organizations defined as follows:
    • Arts and Culture Organization: an organization with a mission that states that it is organized primarily for the purpose of producing, promoting or presenting the arts, heritage and humanities to the public or organized primarily for identifying, documenting, interpreting and preserving cultural resources.
    • Cultural Coalitions: organizations formally recognized by the Oregon Cultural Trust. One official cultural coalition serves each county in Oregon. 


  • Preference will be given to applications that:
    • Have not previously been funded by this program
    • Represent a diverse range of geography, urban/rural communities and organizations led by and serving historically underrepresented groups. 


  • Ineligible Expenses/Activities
    • Lobbying to influence legislation
    • Religious activities
    • Academic scholarships
    • Purchases or activities that occur prior to grant decisions
    • Debt reduction
    • Endowment funding
    • Exclusionary practices or messages