Museums for America Grant, Deadline Jan. 15

The goal of the Museums for America (MFA) program is to strengthen the ability of an individual museum to serve the public more effectively by supporting high-priority activities that advance its mission, plans, and strategic goals and objectives. MFA grants support activities that strengthen museums as active resources for lifelong learning, as important institutions in the establishment of livable communities, and as good stewards of the nation’s collections. MFA grants can fund both new and ongoing museum activities and programs. Examples include planning, managing and conserving collections, improving public access, training, conducting programmatic research, school and public programming, producing exhibitions, and integrating new or upgraded technologies into your operations.

There are three categories within the MFA program:

Learning Experiences IMLS places the learner at the center and supports engaging experiences in museums that prepare people to be full participants in their local communities and our global society. Projects should deliver high quality, inclusive, accessible and audience-focused programs, exhibitions, and services for lifelong learning in formal or informal settings.

Community Anchors IMLS promotes museums as strong community anchors that enhance civic engagement, cultural opportunities, and economic vitality. Projects should address common community challenges and demonstrate how your museum improves the quality of life and enriches community members’ knowledge and understanding of critical local and global issues, provides forums for community dialogue, and/or connects individuals to resources in the broader community service infrastructure through its programs and services. Projects may include capacity-building activities that position your museum to be more effective in fulfilling its role as a community anchor institution.

Collections Stewardship IMLS supports exemplary stewardship of museum collections and promotes the use of technology to facilitate discovery of knowledge and cultural heritage. Projects should support the care and management of collections to expand and sustain access for current and future generations. Projects should reflect systematic, holistic, logical approaches to the documentation, preservation, and conservation of tangible and digital collections to sustain and improve public access. Note to applicants: The FY 2013 Museums for America program now incorporates proposals previously solicited through the Conservation Project Support program.

To be eligible for an award under the FY2013 Museums for America program, you must be an organization that meets all three of the following criteria:

•You must be either a unit of State or local government or be a private nonprofit organization that has tax-exempt status under the Internal Revenue Code;

•You must be located in one of the 50 States of the United States of America, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, the Federated States of Micronesia, or the Republic of Palau; and

•You must qualify as one of the following: 1. A museum that, using a professional staff, is organized on a permanent basis for essentially educational or aesthetic purposes; owns or uses tangible objects, either animate or inanimate; cares for these objects; and exhibits these objects to the general public on a regular basis through facilities that is owns or operates.

What types of museums are eligible? Museums include, but are not limited to, aquariums, arboretums, art museums, botanical gardens, children’s/youth museums, general museums (those having two or more significant disciplines), historic houses/sites, history museums, natural history/anthropology museums, nature centers, planetariums, science/technology centers, specialized museums (limited to a single distinct subject), and zoological parks. What does it mean to be using a professional staff? An institution uses a professional staff if it employs at least one staff member, or the full-time equivalent, whether paid or unpaid, primarily engaged in the acquisition, care, or exhibition to the public of objects owned or used by the institution. What does it mean to exhibit the objects to the general public? An institution exhibits objects to the general public if such exhibition is a primary purpose of the institution. An institution that exhibits objects to the general public for at least 120 days a year is deemed to exhibit objects to the general public on a regular basis. An institution which does not have the exhibition of objects as a primary purpose and/or does not exhibit objects to the public for at least 120 days a year may be determined to be eligible as a museum under certain circumstances. For more information, please see 45 CFR §1180.2(d). 2. A public or private nonprofit agency which is responsible for the operation of a museum may apply on behalf of the museum.

Original Closing Date for Applications:     Jan 15, 2013
Current Closing Date for Applications:     Jan 15, 2013
Archive Date:     Feb 14, 2013
Funding Instrument Type:     Grant
Expected Number of Awards:     185
Award Ceiling:     $150,000
Award Floor:     $5,000
Cost Sharing or Matching Requirement:     Yes

Contact us for more information!

Museums for America Grant, Deadline Jan. 15

Community Food Projects, Deadline Nov. 28

Community Food Projects should be designed to (1): (A) meet the food needs of low-income people; (B) increase the self-reliance of communities in providing for their own food needs; and (C) promote comprehensive responses to local food, farm, and nutrition issues; and/or (2) meet specific state, local, or neighborhood food and agriculture needs for (A) infrastructure improvement and development; (B) planning for long-term solutions; or (C) the creation of innovative marketing activities that mutually benefit agricultural producers and low-income consumers.

Proposed projects should seek comprehensive solutions to problems across all food system levels, not just short-term food relief. This point is emphasized because some previously submitted proposals were denied funding because they were designed primarily for expanding efforts in food relief and assistance, or for connecting established or partially established programs (such as community gardens and farmers’ markets), with little evidence of strategic planning and participation by stakeholders. Proposals should emphasize a food system and/or food security approach and show evidence of information sharing, coalition building, and substantial outreach and linkages to the community.

The USDA and several other federal agencies offer programs that may help strengthen the impact and success of CFPs. These include:

  •     Food recovery and gleaning efforts;
  •     Connecting low-income urban consumers with rural food producers;
  •     Helping citizens leave public assistance and achieve self-sufficiency; and
  •     Using micro-enterprise and/or development projects related to community food needs.

Only private, nonprofit entities meeting the following three requirements are eligible to receive a CFP or PP grant: (a) have experience in the area of (i) community food work, particularly concerning small and medium-size farms, including the provision of food to people in low-income communities and the development of new markets in low-income communities for agricultural producers; or (ii) job training and business development activities for food-related activities in low-income communities; (b) demonstrate competency to implement a project, provide fiscal accountability, collect data, and prepare reports and other necessary documentation; and (c) demonstrate a willingness to share information with researchers, evaluators, practitioners, and other interested parties, including a plan for dissemination of results.

Estimated Total Program Funding:     $5,000,000
Cost Sharing or Matching Requirement:     Yes

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Community Food Projects, Deadline Nov. 28

Our Town Grants, Deadline Jan. 14

National Endowment for the Arts

The Arts Endowment’s support of a project may start on or after September 1, 2013. Art works to improve the lives of America’s citizens in many ways. Communities across our nation are leveraging the arts and engaging design to make their communities more livable with enhanced quality of life, increased creative activity, a distinct sense of place, and vibrant local economies that together capitalize on their existing assets. The NEA defines these efforts as the process of Creative Placemaking: “In creative placemaking, partners from public, private, nonprofit, and community sectors strategically shape the physical and social character of a neighborhood, town, tribe, city, or region around arts and cultural activities. Creative placemaking animates public and private spaces, rejuvenates structures and streetscapes, improves local business viability and public safety, and brings diverse people together to celebrate, inspire, and be inspired.” Ann Markusen, Markusen Economic Research Services Anne Gadwa Nicodemus, Metris Arts Consulting From Creative Placemaking.
    Eligible Applicants

  •     State governments
  •     County governments
  •     City or township governments
  •     Special district governments
  •     Independent school districts
  •     Public and State controlled institutions of higher education
  •     Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized)
  •     Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
  •     Private institutions of higher education

All applications must have partnerships that involve two primary partners: a nonprofit organization and a local governmental entity. One of the two primary partners must be a cultural (arts or design) organization. Additional partners are encouraged. One of the two primary partners must act as the official applicant (lead applicant). This lead applicant must meet the eligibility requirements, submit the application, and assume full responsibility for the grant.

Award Ceiling:     $200,000
Award Floor:     $25,000

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Our Town Grants, Deadline Jan. 14

Dam Removal Grants, Deadline Dec. 1

The Department of Natural Resources has announced a new Dam Management Grant Program to address Michigan’s failing dam infrastructure. The grant opportunity will provide $2.35 million in Fiscal Year 2013 to fund dam removal and critical maintenance, implementing a key tool highlighted in Governor Rick Snyder’s 2011 address on infrastructure needs.

“This program begins to address a growing issue for our state as more than 90 percent of Michigan’s dams will reach or exceed their design life by 2020. Many dams are abandoned, no longer serve any useful purpose, degrade our aquatic resource, and pose safety hazards to downstream residents,” said DNR Director Keith Creagh.
The Dam Management Grant Program will provide funding and technical assistance to local and state units of government, non-profit groups and individuals to manage dam removals or repair/major maintenance projects that will enhance aquatic resources and fishing opportunities in Michigan. It will focus on projects that reduce long-term infrastructure costs and address those that are an imminent public safety issue and are deemed of unsatisfactory condition by Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) dam safety or are under DEQ order. The program will be administered by the DNR. “There are 2,600 Michigan dams listed in the State Dam Inventory with even more not included in this database. Most of these dams were built decades ago for a variety of uses including power generation, water supply, log transportation, flood storage and recreation,” said Chris Freiburger, coordinator of the Dam Management Grant Program.

While the deadline is December 1, we would recommend getting your application in as soon as possible. Contact us for more details!

Dam Removal Grants, Deadline Dec. 1

Brownfield Area Planning Grants, Deadline Nov. 30

This notice announces the availability of EPA grant funds for projects from eligible entities to facilitate community involvement and conduct research, training and technical assistance necessary to develop area-wide plans and implementation strategies to facilitate brownfields assessment, cleanup, and subsequent reuse. Brownfields area-wide planning grant funding must be directed to specific areas affected by a single large or multiple brownfield sites, such as a neighborhood, downtown district, city block or local commercial corridor. The grant funding will result in an area-wide plan, including implementation strategies, for the brownfields-affected area. The brownfields area-wide plan will inform the assessment, cleanup and reuse of brownfields properties and promote area-wide revitalization.

Expected Number of Awards:     20
Estimated Total Program Funding:     $4,000,000
Award Ceiling:     $200,000
Award Floor:     $200,000

Contact us for more information!

Brownfield Area Planning Grants, Deadline Nov. 30