Grant FAQs



Click the buttons below to view answers to frequently asked questions.

Q. What is the source of the funding used to provide Community Arts Grants?

A. The source of funding for these grants is money raised through the Culture Works’ annual Campaign for the Arts. Individuals and companies throughout the region participate, with more than 50% of the funding coming from workplace giving campaigns. The annual Campaign allows individuals to support not just one art form or organization, but to invest in the fundamental value of arts and culture to our community.

Q. How are funding decisions made?

A: In 2014, Culture works implemented a new outcomes-based funding model to better evaluate the effectiveness of applicants in aligning with larger community objectives. Under this model, a panel of knowledgeable local citizens evaluates the applications and determines scores based on the following criteria:

• Public Benefit & Access

• Artistic & Cultural Vibrancy

• Organizational Capacity

Panelists also make site visits to applicant organizations—attending a performance, exhibition, or education demonstration—to gain additional insights into the organization beyond the information included in the application. A Public Grant Panel Meeting will be held on May 31, 2018 in the Schuster Center Donor’s Lounge, time TBD. At this meeting, the panel will discuss the applicant organizations and assign scores. These scores will then be entered into a funding formula that takes into consideration the total amount of funding available, the number of applicants, and each applicant organization’s budget to determine the grant amounts for 2018-2019.

Q: Why has Culture Works changed its grantmaking process?

A: In 2014, Culture Works changed its process to provide more fairness, transparency, and accountability. We also wanted to have more precise outcomes to report back to those who support the annual Campaign for the Arts to show that their gifts are truly making a difference. We take our responsibility to be good stewards of the funding entrusted to us through the annual Campaign for the Arts very seriously.

Q: Is there a precedent for this kind of grantmaking process?

A: Absolutely! An outcomes-based process with a panel, scoring mechanism, and public grant process is used by the Ohio Arts Council to make funding decisions, and by other state arts councils. The same process is also used by the National Endowment for the Arts and a majority of local area arts agencies across the country. Culture Works is now much more aligned with national standards for best practices through the changes that we have made to our grantmaking process.

Q: How are grant applications scored?

A:  Each application is scored based on a Scoring Rubric, which is available here. Applicants will receive a score from each panelist based on their responses to the grant application questions. This funding criteria has been developed to align with desired short-term, mid-term, and long-term outcomes that benefit the community. You can view the Logic Model and the desired outcomes here.

Q: Why are organizations required to support the annual Campaign for the Arts in order to apply for Community Arts Grant funding?

A: Conducting a united arts fund campaign is only one of the programs of Culture Works. Organizations that choose to not support the Culture Works annual Campaign are still eligible to take advantage of the marketing, advocacy, and other support provided to every cultural organization in the Dayton Region by Culture Works. However, if organizations wish to benefit directly from the pool of money gathered through the annual Campaign, we think that it is important that these organizations commit to partnering with us to achieve the best possible outcomes for the annual Campaign by being champions for this effort. Organizations not funded in the past can become part of the funding pool in the future by demonstrating a 2-year history of support.
Other Questions? Contact us through our contact page, or call us at 937-222-2787.