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Project Support Grants - Catalyst Project

Grants to Tennessee Arts Organizations in
Eligible Regions for Organizational Support

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Metro Nashville Arts Commission (Metro Arts)

Conf. Date:


LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

03/26/20 4:30 PM CST


Request a Grant Writer

Grants of up to $10,000 to Tennessee arts organizations in eligible regions for projects that address organizational challenges. First-time applicants must create an online profile in advance of the application deadline. Applicants must submit an LOI prior to submitting an application. Organizations must be located in Metro Nashville or in Davidson County.

Eligible projects in this category are those that address a critical, internal organizational issue that, if addressed, will deepen, expand, or transform the organization. Examples include projects that address the following: cultural equity, capacity-building, financial sustainability, succession planning, workforce development, emergency preparedness, board development, strategic planning and more. Applications for this grant require a letter of intent and conversation with Metro Arts staff prior to submitting a full application. Projects must include the creation of a detailed action plan that includes how the organization plans to continue work in this area moving forward as well as an evaluation plan. Submission of preliminary evaluation findings and action plan are required at closeout. No matching funds are required for this grant.

Grant funds can be used for:

  • Salaries
  • Artist Fees
  • Program/Project Supplies
  • Performance Space/Facility Rental
  • Marketing and Promotion
  • Consulting Fees
  • Equipment Rental

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 187565

Estimated Size of Grant:

Request cannot exceed $10,000.

Term of Contract:

All FY21 grant activities must take place between July 1, 2020 and June 1, 2021 unless otherwise noted.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

To receive a grant from Metro Arts, the applicant must:
- Produce, present or directly support artistic programs, projects or works
- Be chartered in the state of Tennessee and tax-exempt under the IRS Code Section 501(c)(3)
- Have an IRS Letter of Determination with an effective date of exemption of January 1, 2018 or earlier for Project Support
- Have a business address that is located in Metro Nashville & Davidson County and operate most of its programs in Metro Nashville
- Have evidence of non-discrimination employment and personnel practices in place
- Maintain a fully completed and accurate profile

Organizations that received a Creation or Catalyst grant in FY20 are not eligible to apply for the same category in FY21.

There are certain types of organizations and projects that cannot receive grants from Metro Arts. They are:
- Arts organizations who focus on capacity building, technical assistance, or advocacy and do not offer direct artistic programming
- “Friends of…” organizations whose primary purpose is to support government agencies or initiatives
- Requests for capital improvements or to purchase property (Capital improvements are generally projects that create a permanent structure, change a permanent structure, increase the value of the property, and/or last more than one year.)

Grant funds cannot be used for:
- Capital Improvements or Equipment Purchase
- Reduction of Debts
- Food or Beverage
- Activities or Programs with Religious Content
- Political Lobbying Activities
- Fundraising Events
- Purchase of Property

Pre-proposal Conference:

Metro Arts Grants 101

This is an information session to review the FY21 Metro Arts Grant program. Attendees will meet Metro Arts staff, learn about the Metro Arts Grants application and award processes, and have an opportunity to ask staff questions.

Tuesday, 18 February 2020 from 13:00-15:00 CST
Metro Arts: Nashville Office of Arts and Culture

Pre-Application Information:

Important Dates:
- Applicant Grant Training Online Video Available: January 31, 2020
- Letter of Intent for Catalyst Grant Due via Email: February 27, 2020
- Draft Review Request Deadline - Project Support Categories: March 6, 2020
- Application Deadline - Projects: 4:30 PM March 26, 2020
- Panel Review - Catalyst Project Support: May 8, 2020
- Commission Approval: June 18, 2020
- Grant Period: July 1, 2020 – June 1, 2021

All applicants are required to have a profile. New profiles take some time to create initially but are easy to update on an annual basis. Grant applicants that do not already have a complete profile on should submit new profile requests to no later than February 15, 2020 for the grant deadline. Applicants that already have a complete profile should submit any necessary updates to by February 28, 2020 in order for changes to be updated by the grant deadline.

A letter of intent (LOI) outlining the proposed Catalyst Project is required via email to the Metro Arts Grants Manager by Thursday, February 27, 2020 at 4:30 PM.

Applicants may request a draft review of their application prior to the application deadline. Draft reviews are open to all applicants. First-time applicants are strongly encouraged to take advantage of this opportunity for feedback from a Metro Arts staff member. Simply enter your answers in to the application form in WebGrants, click save, then email the Grants Manager to request a draft review. All narrative answers in The Community, The Art, and The Organization are required prior to requesting a draft review. The draft review requests deadline is March 6, 2020 for project support applications. A staff member will read the application and provide feedback within 5 business days.

After staff review, eligible projects may submit a full application by Thursday March 26, 2020 at 4:30 PM.

Arts focused organizations may apply for up to three (3) grants in a single fiscal year. Applicants can apply for one (1) operating support category as well as one (1) Arts Access or Youth Arts grant and one (1) Creation or Catalyst grant.

Metro Arts Grants 101:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

For further assistance, please contact:
Janine Christiano, Grants Manager

Metro Nashville Arts Commission
P.O. Box 196300
Nashville TN 37219-6300

615.862.6720 phone
615.862.6731 fax

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Tennessee: Metro Nashville and Davidson County

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