Arts Grants

Office of Raleigh Arts

Last updated Nov. 16, 2017 - 9:01 am
  • African American Cultural Festival
  • SPARKcon
  • American Indian Heritage Celebration
  • La Fiesta del Pueblo
  • International Focus

The City of Raleigh Arts Grant Program is the official vehicle for municipal support to the City's arts organizations. The Commission's Arts Grants Program has been in operation since 1989, distributing more than $32 million dollars to qualifying organizations. A major example of the City Council's dedication to the cultural development of Raleigh, the program is supported currently by a $5 per capita allocation, which resulted in grant awards totaling $1,801,058 for 2017-2018.

2017-2018 Arts Learning Community for Universal Access

What does it mean for an arts organization to include people with disabilities in its programming? While arts organizations are increasing their accommodations, they still face obstacles to making improvements and have questions about the what, why, and how of getting things done. 

To support these efforts, the City of Raleigh Arts Commission and the United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County are partnering for a third year to offer a yearlong arts learning community that uses a collaborative approach to advocating for and improving access to the arts for people with disabilities. This peer cohort will run this summer through June of 2018 and 16 representatives of Raleigh and Wake County organizations will be selected to participate.

Organizations interested in participating in this Arts Learning Community, must submit a completed application to the Office of Raleigh Arts by Thursday, June 1 at 4 p.m.

For complete information about the Arts Learning Community for Universal Access, please download the 2017-2018 Arts Learning Community Guidelines & Application Form.

2016-2017 Arts Learning Community for Universal Access Members

Arts Access – Betsy Ludwig
Arts Together – Carly Jones
Artspace – Megan Sullivan
Cary Visual Art – Catherine Howard
CAM Raleigh – Gab Smith
International Focus – Ella Fang
North Carolina Arts Council – Emily Catherine Mealor
NCSU Gregg Museum – Hilary Kinlaw
NCSU Theatre – Mia Self
North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences – Liani Yirka
PineCone – Courtney Wheeler, Jamie Katz Court
Sertoma Art Center – Julia Meder
Visual Art Exchange – Brandon Cordrey


Thousands of people partake in the cultural offerings of Raleigh every year! The Raleigh Arts Grant Program enriches the lives of residents and visitors, providing support for a diverse range of opportunities including city arts festivals, live theatre, dance and music performances, visual arts exhibitions and youth arts programs.

The Raleigh Arts Grant Program has been critical to the development of many of Raleigh's cultural organizations, helping to bring stability to the city's arts community and providing leverage for groups to seek business, foundation and other agency matching grants. Arts and culture-related industries (collectively known as "creative industries") have provided direct economic benefits to Raleigh by creating jobs, attracting new investments, generating tax revenues and stimulating tourism and consumer purchases.


Subject to eligibility requirements, any nonprofit organization, with 501(c)3 tax exempt status and whose corporate headquarters is located within the limits of the City of Raleigh, may apply for an Arts Grant. To determine eligibility for these grants, please review the grant guidelines below and note the application dates and deadlines.

Required Grant Workshops

Any organization interested in applying for a 2018-2019 Arts Grant must attend at least one of the grant workshops scheduled this fall. Organizations interested in Innovation Grant funding must attend a new or returning applicant workshop plus the Innovation Grant Workshop.

Returning Operating Support Applicant Workshop: Tuesday, 10/24, 3-4:30pm
Returning Program Support Applicant Workshop: Wednesday, 10/25, 11am-12:30pm

Designed for current Arts Grant recipients whose grant writers have written successful Arts Grant applications in the past, this workshop focuses primarily on changes for the 2018-2019 application process. Currently funded organizations with NEW development staff/grant writers who haven’t previously written a Raleigh Arts Commission grant application should register for the “How to Write It Right” grant workshop listed below instead.

Location: Walnut Creek Wetland Center, 950 Peterson Street, Raleigh

Workshop Registration

Session I: Thursday, 11/2, 1:30-2:30pm
Session 2: Tuesday, 11/7, 4-5pm

Nonprofit organizations not currently receiving Arts Grant funding must attend one of these two sessions. This workshop introduces prospective applicants to the grant program and provides in depth information about eligibility requirements and grant categories.

Location: Walnut Creek Wetland Center, 950 Peterson Street, Raleigh

Workshop Registration

Monday, November 13, 11am-1pm

The Innovation Grant category supports arts organizations in solving adaptive challenges (those that defy standard fixes and business-as-usual practices). It encourages organizations to take a fresh look at programming, infrastructure, collaborations, and/or community engagement strategies by providing “risk capital” for exploration, experimentation, and invention.

Because this grant category has such a unique focus, all potential Innovation Grant applicants must attend this workshop. The session will cover both how to develop an innovative project and how to tailor your grant application to successfully present your new idea. Not sure if an Innovation Grant is for you? This workshop will help you decide.

Location: Halifax Community Center, 1023 Halifax Street, Raleigh

Workshop Registration

Tuesday, November 28, 4-6pm

In this workshop for grant writers new to the Arts Grant application process, participants learn step-by-step how to complete application forms, respond to those pesky narrative questions and put together required attachments. Be sure to read the 2018-2019 grant guidelines and application forms ahead of time. Participants are encouraged to bring draft 2018-2019 applications and questions with them to this session. New applicants are not required to attend this workshop, though it is highly recommended.

Location: Walnut Creek Wetland Center, 950 Peterson Street, Raleigh

Workshop Registration

Innovation Grants, Operating and Program Support

2018-2019 Grant Application Process

Based on recommendations by the Raleigh Arts Commission, the City of Raleigh awards Arts Grant funding annually to non-profit organizations headquartered in Raleigh. 2018-2019 Arts Grants will support arts program and application forms for the applicable grant category programming that runs July 1, 2018 - June 30, 2019 and applications are due by Wednesday, January 3, 2018.

All organizations interested in applying for funding must attend one of the annual grant workshops scheduled for October and November. See the grant workshop section above for complete information and workshop dates.

Organizations new to the Raleigh Arts Grant Program, and those interested in applying for a different type of funding than they have in the past, must notify the Arts Grant Director of their intent to apply and schedule a meeting with her to discuss their proposals.

For complete information about the 2018-2019 Arts Grant Program, including funding levels, grant categories and application requirements, download the grant guidelines and application forms for the applicable grant category using the link below.

2018-2019 Grant Guidelines and Application Forms:

Operating Support & Innovation Grant Guidelines
Program Support & Innovation Grant Guidelines

Application Form - Innovation Grants
Application Form - Operating Support
Application Form - Program Support

Participation Statistics Form
Partnership Information Form
Board Information Form
Finance Forms

Universal Accessibility Checklist

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