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Cultural Grant Program

Grants to Florida Nonprofits and IHEs in
Eligible Areas for Arts and Cultural Programming

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Council on Culture and Arts (COCA)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

09/25/20 11:59 PM Electronic Receipt


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Grants of up to $5,000 to Florida nonprofit arts and cultural organizations for programs that benefit the residents of eligible communities. Funding is intended to improve the local quality of life, enhance the local economy, and promote tourism. Eligible programs and activities benefit the City of Tallahassee and Leon County. All events and programs must be for the public and not be intended for an exclusive target group only. Any fees charged to participate should be reasonable and not so high as to effectively exclude a large group of people.

There are two categories of State Partners:

  • General or Educational: General or Educational Partners can apply for programs that demonstrate efforts to enhance Leon County tourism or which create broader public access, benefit, and participation in arts and cultural events in the community. Educational programs will be designed for and presented to the general public, K-12, or lifelong learning but not be primarily for university-enrolled students. 
  • Destination: A Destination is a permanent facility and/or site that is open to the public at least 180 days per year that has regular programming directed to the general public and tourists and has a documented impact on tourist visitation. 

Programs must meet one of the following goals:

  • Produce arts, history, and/or cultural programming with exemplary standards: Programs that enrich the community with attention to the highest standards within a cultural discipline.
  • Provide educational opportunities in arts, culture, and history for young people or adults: Programs that feature learning opportunities for young and/or life-long learners.
  • Serve a special or diverse population or need, fill a unique niche, or engage the community in the creative or artistic process. The grant program seeks to fund programming that offers a unique service in arts, culture, and history not otherwise provided in the community; programs that provide distinctive arts, history, and cultural offerings; programs that highlight cultural diversity and/or access for persons with disabilities; programs that bring arts, cultural and historic exhibits or events to underserved areas; programs that engage members of the community in the creative and/or artistic process.

For examples of allowable expenses, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 172017

Estimated Size of Grant:

To be eligible for Group 4 as part of COCA’s Cultural Grant Program, applicants must apply for a total of $5,000 or less for a single program. The total request for funding may not be more than 20% of the organization’s total allowable operational budget.

Term of Contract:

All funds must be spent within the grant activity period of October 1, 2020, through September 30, 2021.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

In order to be eligible for the COCA Cultural Grant, your organization must:

1. Be a not-for-profit Florida corporation with at least 60% of your operating cash budget originating from earned income and classified by the IRS as a 501(c) 3, sub-class “public charity”; or
1A. Be a department, museum, or other organization working under the FEID number of a part of the State of Florida, Florida State University, Florida A&M University, or Tallahassee Community College.
2. Have arts and/or history activity as its primary purpose.
3. Have been providing programming in your discipline for at least 3 complete fiscal years.
4. Have the majority of your activities take place in Tallahassee/Leon County.
5. Have a professional staff.
6. Have a governing Board of Directors that meets regularly and operates under a set of by-laws.
7. Demonstrate the receipt of community support through subscriptions, memberships, earned income, foundation grants and/or other private fundraising (including in-kind support).
8. Produce arts or cultural programs that are regularly available to the public throughout the year.
9. Have documented statistics on attendance and participation for your programs and/or facility (paid or free) that represent a broad community impact.
10. Be committed to and have a plan in place to provide for accessibility for people with disabilities, including compliance with the ADA.

Grant funds may not be used for capital expenses. For the purposes of this grant, capital expenses include building projects, acquisitions, renovations, land acquisition, and other permanent improvements to physical plant (i.e. new roof, air conditioning systems, security fence, lighting grid). Capital expenses also include the purchase of equipment that is not directly related to the production of events or exhibits.

For example, a projector for closed captioning, stage lights, film projector, artwork for a permanent collection, or interpretive items for an exhibit are allowable. A copy machine or a delivery van is not.

Grant funds may not be used for general overhead that is unrelated to programming and/or promotion (i.e. financial audit, board retreats, decorating the facility, etc.) Keep in mind that some grant funds may be used on a portion of administrative costs that directly relate to programming and/or promotion (payroll, insurance, rent, office supplies, postage, etc.).

Leon County discourages line item requests if you are eligible to apply to this grant fund or others.

If your program is receiving a grant from Visit Tallahassee or CHSP (Community Human Services Partnership), that same program WILL NOT be eligible to receive County support through COCA’s Cultural Grant Program during the same grant year.

Grant funds may also not be used for:
- Private or exclusive entertainment (i.e. parties, receptions or benefits that are not open and accessible to the general public)
- Bad debts, contingencies, fines and penalties, interest, and other financial costs
- Re-granting
- Contributions and donations
- Religious programs
- Operation of privately owned facilities (i.e. studios, homes)
- Third-party grant administration (indirect costs)
- Lobbying or attempting to influence federal, state or local legislation
- Or any other expenditure not authorized by Chapter 112 of the Florida Statutes.

Pre-proposal Conference:

On August 5, 2020, COCA will host a virtual grant workshop for anyone needing assistance during the grant writing process. The session will focus on a review of the FY21 grant programs and how to apply.

Pre-Application Information:

The application deadline is Sept. 25, 2020, at 11:59 pm. Submit the online Economic Impact Survey by September 25, 2020, for your application to be complete.

To avoid technical errors, applicants are urged to take advantage of COCA’s Courtesy Review Process. Make an appointment with COCA for a complimentary technical review on or before Sept. 18, 2020. Even if this is not your first time applying for a grant, you are urged to take advantage of these consultations.

FY21 Cultural Grant Program timeline:
- Applications available: July 27, 2020
- Grant workshop: August 5, 2020
- Courtesy consultations: August 10 through September 18, 2020
- Panelist Nomination deadline: August 31, 2020
- Courtesy review deadline: September 18, 2020
- Application deadline: September 25, 2020, 11:59 PM
- Panel review meeting: October 23, 2020, 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM, via Zoom
- City and county budgets finalized: September 30, 2020
- Disbursement of grant funds: December 2020 and May 2021

Contact Information:

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

Email applications and direct questions to

Online economic impact survey:

816 South ML King Jr Blvd
Tallahassee, FL 32301

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Florida

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