North Carolina has one of the most highly developed networks of local arts councils in the country. For over half a century, we have provided funding and technical assistance to encourage arts organizations to deliver multiple ways to broaden, deepen and diversify participation in the arts in local communities.
More than 75 local arts councils across our state provide programs, services and funding to local organizations to strengthen the arts in their own communities.
Local arts councils are distinctive because they reflect the unique arts resources of their counties. Some offer gallery space for rotating visual arts exhibitions; others operate performing arts centers or focus on extensive arts programming in schools. Yet they all share a common goal to provide opportunities for community members to experience the arts, both local cultural and artistic assets as well as new arts experiences from outside their home regions.
Established in 1977, the Grassroots Arts Program provides per capita-based funding for arts programming to all 100 counties across N.C., ensuring opportunities for citizens to experience the arts in their own communities. This program is a national model for how to distribute resources for the arts in a manner that values the creative vision and leadership of local arts councils and community partners.