Attention: Important Program Changes for 2017: After a year-long planning process LMCC has refocused its arts education funding to support projects and activities that take place in community-based settings such as afterschool programs, senior centers, and community centers through Creative Learning.

Creative Learning is a grant program designed to support and develop the capacity of Manhattan’s teaching artists and small arts organizations to provide in-depth, communitybased arts education and enrichment projects and programming to participants of all ages including youth, adults, and seniors.

The program aims to support effective and innovative approaches to artist-led, age- and skills-appropriate instruction outside of the school setting, as well as education-based approaches to participatory arts projects. Emphasis is placed on quality and depth of the creative process through which participants learn through and about the arts. Creative Learning strongly supports the payment of artist fees.

The program is comprised of two funds: City funds, provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs’ Greater New York Arts Development Fund, and State funds, provided by the New York State Council on the Arts’ (NYSCA) Decentralization program. Funding is intended for artists and organizations that are not able to apply directly to the City and/or State for arts funding. Creative Learning often provides the first grant that an applicant receives, which can help leverage additional support.

The program is accompanied by technical assistance to applicants, and networking and promotional opportunities for funded projects.

Past Creative Curricula applicants, some important factors to consider when deciding whether to apply to Creative Learning:

  • Creative Learning supports arts education and enrichment projects for all ages
  • Activities supported by Creative Learning must be promoted to and remain open for public registration
  • In-school, K-12 arts education activities are no longer supported

This year, all Creative Learning applicants are required to attend an information session in the summer of 2016 before applying.

 

APPLICATIONS FOR CREATIVE ENGAGEMENT 2017 AND CREATIVE LEARNING 2017 ARE NOW CLOSED. APPLICANTS WILL BE NOTIFIED BY EMAIL IN FEBRUARY 2017 .

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Creative Learning supports projects that draw on arts education practices to engage participants in the creation and interpretation of artistic works. Funding is provided for sequential, skill-based arts study and participatory arts projects that take place in accessible community-based settings such as afterschool programs, senior centers and community centers, in neighborhoods from Inwood to the Battery.

Competitive projects will demonstrate an in-depth artistic learning experience, thoughtful project planning, and appropriate learning goals and activities for the age ranges served.

The program encourages individual teaching artists to collaborate with community-based partners to develop arts programming to reach shared goals. Partnership projects should be conceived, planned, and implemented by teaching artists and administrators working together to utilize resources. Competitive projects will demonstrate the Partner Organization’s strong commitment to the arts through cash and other means of project support.

Projects may, but are not required to, culminate in a public event or finished product such as an exhibit, performance, or presentation. LMCC encourages projects that feature opportunities for familial and community involvement.

Creative Learning offers the opportunity to access City, State, or both sources of funds by completing a single application. Please note:

  • Applicants eligible for City funds may request up to $5,000.
  • Applicants eligible for State funds may request up to $5,000.
  • Applicants eligible for City and State funds may request up to $8,000.
  • If awarded, no grants will be made for less than $750.

In addition, LMCC encourages proposals that include professional development activities that will help teaching artists grow as educators. State-funding applicants may request an allocation of up to $200 in Creative Learning funds to support teaching artists’ participation in workshops, seminars and/or conferences focusing on best practices in arts education, such as curriculum development, classroom management, and evaluation.

See Applicant Eligibility for specific City and State eligibility requirements.

Application Deadline: 5PM on Friday, September 30, 2016 for projects taking place between January 1 – December 31, 2017.

To be announced.

Nonprofit Organizations:

Creative Learning supports nonprofit organizations that meet the following Core Eligibility Requirements:

  • Organizations must be based in Manhattan.
  • Organizations must have proof of nonprofit status.
  • Organizations must have a core artistic mission and/or history of arts programming.
  • Applicants may not apply to LMCC’s Creative Engagement program for the same fiscal year.
  • All applicants are required to attend an information session in 2016 before applying. For dates, locations, and to RSVP, click here.

In addition, to access City funding:

  • Organizations may not be directly receiving funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) for the same fiscal year.
  • Organizations must have operating budgets under $100,000 for two of the last three completed fiscal years.
  • Organizations may not be New York City agencies or departments.

To access State funding:

  • Organizations may not be directly applying for funds from the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) for a grant for the same fiscal year, regardless of funding status.
  • Organizations may not be New York State agencies or departments.

Individual Artists and Collectives:

Creative Learning supports individual teaching artists, as well as collectives, project- based collaborations, and unincorporated groups that meet the following Core Eligibility Requirements:

  • Individual teaching artists must reside in Manhattan.
  • Individual teaching artists may not apply or receive funds on behalf of any organization.
  • Collectives must designate a lead artist (director, or equivalent), who meets all eligibility requirements for individual teaching artists, to apply as an individual on its behalf. Note: The lead artist will be the primary entity responsible for the application, as well as the grant, if awarded. Guest artists or temporary programming staff will not be considered a lead artist for the application.
  • Applicants may not apply to LMCC’s Creative Engagement program for the same fiscal year.
  • All applicants are required to attend an information session in 2016 before applying. For dates, location, and to RSVP, click here.

To access City funding:

  • Individual teaching artists and collectives need only meet the above Core Eligibility Requirements.

To access State funding:

  • Individual teaching artists and collectives should be collaborating with a nonprofit Partner Organization to realize the proposed project. If desired, the Partner Organization may also act as the artist’s fiscal sponsor. The Partner Organization must:
    • Be a primary project collaborator and contribute resources, monetary or otherwise, to the project
    • Be based in Manhattan
    • Provide proof of nonprofit status
    • Provide a letter of commitment describing the organization’s role and planned contributions to the project
    • Not be directly applying to New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) for a grant for the same fiscal year
    • Not be a New York State agency or department
  • Individuals and collectives may not be directly applying to New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) for a grant for the same fiscal year, regardless of funding status.

About fiscal sponsorship:

Creative Learning will directly support individual artists and collectives without a fiscal sponsor. Those who wish to apply with a fiscal sponsor, please note:

  • Applicants for City funding may apply with a fiscal sponsor of their choice.
  • Applicants for State funding may only designate their Partner Organization as fiscal sponsor.

Creative Learning supports sequential, skills-based arts study and participatory arts pro- jects incorporating one or more art forms.

Project Requirements:

  • Project activities must be open and accessible for public registration, and reflected accordingly in outreach and participant recruitment plans.
  • Projects may, but are not required to, culminate in a public event or finished product such as an exhibit, performance, or presentation.
  • Project activities must be located in Manhattan.
  • Project activities must take place between January 1, 2017 and December 31, 2017.
  • Project must hold at least three (3) contact sessions between the same teaching artist and group of participants.
  • Project budget must show at least 25% of planned project income, in cash or in-kind contributions, from sources other than Creative Learning.
  • All participating professional artists must be guaranteed a fee, indicated in the project budget.
  • Applicants may not be a lead artist or key partner in more than one proposal to Creative Learning.
  • Applicants may only submit one (1) proposal requesting support for one (1) project from Creative Learning, including those requesting both City and State funds.
  • Applicants for City funding may also apply to the SU-CASA program, administered in Manhattan by LMCC and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA), provided it is for a different project.

Support for professional development

Applicants to State funding may request an allocation of up to $200 as part of the total Creative Learning funding request to support participation in professional development training, seminars, and/or conferences. Please note, proposed professional development activities:

  • Must take place between January 1 – December 31, 2017.
  • Should be focused on best practices in arts education such as curriculum development, classroom management and evaluation, but does not have to be directly related to the proposed project
  • Must be reflected as part of the project budget submitted as part of the application

Under this program, funding is not available for:

  • In-school arts education programs or projects exclusively serving a school’s stu- dent body; this includes classroom-based school activities previously supported by Creative Curricula
  • Projects restricted to any organization’s membership; eligible projects must be promoted and remain available to the general public
  • Projects and programs where participation is determined by a merit-based review and selection process
  • Projects that are intended to be experienced solely online
  • Arts programs that are primarily socio-economic, recreational, rehabilitative, religious or therapeutic in nature
  • Humanities projects
  • Professional arts training programs
  • General operating support or funds to establish a new organization
  • Payment for facilities, purchase of capital equipment, or non-project related administrative expenses
  • Offering fellowships or cash prizes
  • Entertainment costs, such as opening parties, receptions, or fundraisers
  • Events that take place in private homes
  • Payment to amateur participants of community workshops or programs
  • Previous grantees of LMCC that have failed to comply with grant contract or reporting requirements

A jury of artists and arts professionals will review projects using the following four criteria:

  • Artistic merit of project design, and the expertise and appropriateness of proposed artists and educators
  • Degree to which the proposed project will strengthen learning in the arts and deepen the exploration of the artistic process for the proposed participants, taking into account the stated learning goals and methodologies.
  • Clarity, appropriateness, and feasibility of project, taking into account the project description, outreach/recruitment plan, timeline, budget, and evaluation tools.
  • For partnership projects only: Degree to which the partnership will collaboratively plan, implement, and contribute resources for the project; supported by the Partner Organization’s letter of commitment.

The criteria are not listed in order of priority; each is equally important. Please make sure that your application materials, taken as a whole, address these criteria.

Applying to Creative Learning is a competitive process. Proposals should accurately describe the project, activities, and recruitment efforts, learning goals, and the project’s anticipated impact. Project budgets should be precise, reflect actual needs, and demonstrate the ability to raise funds from additional sources.

Applicants will be notified by email in February 2017 whether their projects have been funded.

We encourage applicants and grantees to contact our staff for a summary of jury comments and feedback on their applications.

Grant Requirements

The grant award is a contract for arts services; grantees are required to do the following during the grant period:

  • Sign and return grant contract to LMCC
  • Include funding credit on all marketing and event materials, print and electronic
  • Submit an event notification form six weeks before funded public events take place to: 1) allow LMCC to promote the event information and/or 2) arrange for an LMCC representative to attend.
  • Notify LMCC of any significant changes to proposed project activities, including schedule, key participants, project scope or budget, before these changes are finalized.
  • Submit a final report, no later than 30 days after completion of all project activities

Appeals Process

Applicants may appeal decisions in writing within ten (10) days of funding notifications should they believe an error in the review of their application has taken place, effectively arguing the case for appeal based on the criteria below. Dissatisfaction with either an un- favorable decision or the recommended level of support is not grounds for appeal.

Grounds for appeal are limited to the following:

  • Misrepresentation of information: an applicant’s information was improperly presented by the LMCC staff in a way that may have adversely affected the review process
  • Non-presentation of information: the applicant’s information was not presented by the LMCC staff as part of the jury’s decision-making process
  • Improper jury procedure: conflict of interest or biased decision

 

Applications should be completed and submitted online before 5PM on Friday, September 30, 2016.

 

Nonprofit Organizations: upload one (1) copy of each of the following items:

  • Proof of nonprofit status with address in Manhattan. Choose ONE (1) of the following options:
    • Letter of Determination from the IRS indicating tax-exempt status under section 501(c)(3)
    • Documentation of charter by the New York State Board of Regents under section 216 of the New York State Education Law
    • Documentation of incorporation under Section 402 of the New York State Not-for-Profit Corporation Law
    • Current New York State Bureau of Charities (Office of the Attorney General) filing receipt
    • Official authorization as an arm of local government (i.e. a formal letter on official stationary signed by the appropriate county, city, town or village executive) Note: If the address on nonprofit documentation is a PO Box, provide additional proof of the organization’s physical address in Manhattan.
  • Board of directors and staff lists
  • Financial statement for the most recently completed fiscal year (audited statement or most recently filed IRS Form 990). Note: If the organization filed a 990N, submit an itemized financial statement signed by the organization’s treasurer, bookkeeper, or accountant instead.
  • Projected organizational budget for the fiscal year in which the proposed project takes place (i.e. FY16 or FY17)
  • Optional support materials related to the project or the applicant. Examples include sample lesson plans, completed evaluation forms, participant feedback, and letters of recommendation or promotional materials.

Individual Artist(s) And Collectives: upload one (1) copy of each of the following items:

  • Proof of Manhattan address of the individual artist or lead artist of a collective. Upload one (1) copy of one (1) of the following:
    • Utility bill (e.g. electricity, cable, gas, etc.)
    • Driver’s license (address on the driver’s license must be same as address provided in application) Note: If the proof of address shows a PO Box, provide additional proof of the individual’s physical address in Manhattan.
  • Optional support materials related to the project or the applicant. Examples include sample lesson plans, completed evaluation forms, participant feedback, and letters of recommendation or promotional materials.Individual artists and collectives applying i) for city funds with a fiscal sponsor, or ii) for state funds with a partner organization must provide the following:
  • Letter of commitment on the organization’s letterhead, signed by the Executive Director or equivalent. The Letter should confirm the following.
    • For Fiscal Sponsors:
      • The scope of the proposed project, demonstrating an overall understanding of the proposal
      • Roles and responsibilities as fiscal sponsor
    • For Partner Organizations:
      • The scope of the proposed project, demonstrating an overall understanding of the proposal
      • Roles and responsibilities as a collaborator to realize the project
      • Contributions towards the project, monetary or otherwise, if any
  • Proof of nonprofit status from the organization. Choose one (1) of the following options:
    • Letter of Determination from the IRS indicating tax-exempt status under section 501(c)(3)
    • Documentation of charter by the New York State Board of Regents under section 216 of the New York State Education Law
    • Documentation of incorporation under Section 402 of the New York State Not-for-Profit Corporation Law
    • Current New York State Bureau of Charities (Office of the Attorney General) filing receipt
    • Official authorization as an arm of local government (i.e. a formal letter on official stationary signed by the appropriate county, city, town or village executive) Note: If the address on nonprofit documentation is a PO Box, provide additional proof of the organization’s physical address in Manhattan.

Applicants for state funds that designate their partner organization as a fiscal sponsor must also provide the following:

  • Board of directors and staff lists from the Partner Organization.
  • Financial statement from the Partner Organization for the most recently completed fiscal year (audited statement or most recently filed IRS Form 990). Note: If the organization filed a 990N, submit an itemized financial statement signed by the organization’s treasurer instead.
  • Projected organizational budget from the Partner Organization, for the fiscal year in which the proposed project takes place (i.e. FY16 or FY17).

We recommend that you view the Online Application Form and instructions in advance and maintain a backup copy of your responses in a separate document off line. Once you have submitted the form, you will not be able to make changes, or resubmit.

Work samples are an important element of your application. Choose samples from within the last three years that best represent your project. LMCC uses a Mac laptop and projector to play work samples. Please test your samples accordingly.

The aim of the work sample is to bring the jury as close as possible to an actual experience of the work. Do not submit edited promotional or interview materials.

Work Sample Formats

Submit samples of past and current work by uploading or providing links directly in the online application form in one (1) of the following formats, based on the discipline or form of your projects. Contact our staff if you wish to combine formats.

  • Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit samples that demonstrate experience working in an educational context. For example, documentation of classroom activities, workshops, or samples of participants’ work that resulted from previous projects under the direction of the applicant.
  • If education-based work samples are not available, applicants may submit samples of work by the artists who will be involved in the project.

Performing Arts, Film, Media And Other Time-Based Projects
Submit recordings: 2 maximum
Submit for up to two (2) recordings of past/current works or projects in performing, media, music, film or other time-based art forms. Creative Learning accepts recordings in two formats:

1. Online: links to video or audio samples hosted on one of the following external sites: YouTube.com, Vimeo.com or SoundCloud.com.

  • Provide these links in the Online Application Form.
  • Samples should remain accessible online through March 2017.
  • Do NOT submit personal website URLs, or links to other online sites and platforms.

2. CDs or DVDs: received by LMCC by the application deadline.

  • Indicate in the Online Application that you are submitting CDs or DVDs.
  • Submit your work samples disks to LMCC before the application deadline to the following address: Creative Learning, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, 125 Maiden Lane, Second Floor, New York, NY 10038
  • Include a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) if you want the samples to be returned. Samples with SASE will be returned by April 2017.
  • Label your CD/DVD as “[applicant name]: Sample #”. Use a permanent marker. Do not submit stickers on DVDs or CDs as these can jam equipment.

The selection jury will view each recording for up to 2.5 minutes. However, we encourage you to submit full-length work, if possible. Provide a cue point, which indicates the start time to play the sample during review, for any work sample that is longer than three (3) minutes total. Theater artists without video documentation should contact LMCC staff about alternative work sample formats.

Literary Projects
Upload manuscripts: 10 pages maximum
Submit samples no longer than ten (10) pages of scripts, poetry or prose. Applicants may provide any number of works totaling ten pages, however you will only be allowed to submit one (1) document in PDF format.

The manuscript must be typed, double-spaced with 8 1/2” x 11” page formatting. The applicant’s name, title of the work, and a page number should appear on each page of the manuscript.

Visual Arts Projects
Upload images: 10 maximum
Submit a maximum of ten (10) digital images.

  • Images must be saved as JPEG files, 800 pixels in the longest dimension, at 72dpi.
  • Each image filename must be saved as: “LastName_FirstName_#” (e.g. Smith_John_01.jpg / Smith_John_02.jpg / etc.)
  • During the selection process, images will be viewed one at a time as a projection.
  • Work Sample image files should be directly uploaded into the Online Application.

Questions or Technical Issues?

Contact: Claire Gresham, Program Associate, Grants & Services at 212-219-9401 or CreativeLearning@LMCC.net

APPLICATIONS FOR CREATIVE ENGAGEMENT 2017 AND CREATIVE LEARNING 2017 ARE NOW CLOSED. APPLICANTS WILL BE NOTIFIED BY EMAIL IN FEBRUARY 2017 .