In most counties, local arts councils have been nominated by their county governments and approved by the N.C. Arts Council as Designated County Partners (DCPs) to manage the Grassroots allotment. In order to maintain its designated status, a local arts council must meet the following standards:
A complete Designated County Partner guidebook is available for download:
Download the Grassroots Arts Program guidebook »
DCPs may use up to 50 percent of their grant funds for general operating support; the remaining 50 percent must be used for arts programming as follows:
To To ensure that Grassroots Arts Programs reflect the racial and ethnic diversity of our state, each DCP is required to spend a representative percentage of its annual county allotment on programs that reflect the diverse cultures (specifically African American, Asian American, Latino, and Native American) of its county’s population. The minimum amount a DCP must spend on multicultural programming is provided on an allocation chart by county and is available on the Local Arts Council Resources page.
DCPs with county populations above 50,000 are required to subgrant at least 50 percent of their allocations to other organizations in their county to conduct arts programs. If the DCP is not required to subgrant, but chooses to, these same guidelines must be followed
Eligibility for Subgrants
Organizations must have been in operation for at least one year. While nonprofit 501(c)(3) status is preferred, organizations that are nonprofit in nature may also receive Grassroots Arts Program subgrants.
Priorities for Funding
The first priority for awarding subgrants is to provide program or operating support to qualified arts organizations (where they exist), including theaters, symphonies, galleries, art guilds, choral societies, dance companies, folk arts societies, writers groups, and arts festivals, among others. Grassroots funds are not generally awarded to arts organizations that receive funding through the N.C. Arts Council’s State Arts Resources (SAR) Program. SAR organizations must receive prior approval from the N.C. Arts Council staff before applying for Grassroots funds.
The second priority for subgranting grassroots funds is to support arts learning and arts-in-education programs conducted by qualified artists. These can be artist residencies in schools, after-school summer camps, or adult arts learning classes. Grassroots funds may not be used for activities associated with a school’s internal arts programs such as in-school student performances, the purchase of art supplies, or student arts competitions and publications.
The third priority includes subgrants made to other community, civic, and municipal organizations that provide quality experiences for the greater community. These programs must be conducted by qualified artists.
In response to the pandemic, all DCPs will submit a modified update application for FY2021-22 Grassroots funds. The 2021-22 deadline is Monday, May 3, 2021. Applicants will submit the form electronically through the GO Smart portal.
The following information will be requested in the pandemic response update application. These questions should be answered as they relate to the entire scope of the organization, not just as your role as a DCP. Organizations will also be asked to provide operating income and expense information for the last, current, and upcoming fiscal years.
Note: The N.C. Arts Council is surveying our primary arts partners to understand the current state of organizations' efforts related to diversity, equity, accessibility, and inclusion. This data will help us shape future programs and services.