Statewide Service Organizations

Who May Apply

Organizations that provide programs and services to the arts community on a regional or statewide basis. Applicants must have had an operating budget of at least $20,000 for the last completed fiscal year. First-time applicants to this category should consult with staff to determine eligibility.


This category provides funds to service organizations to serve their members, artists, arts organizations, and the arts community. Funded programs and services may include newsletters, listserv and web site management, conferences, workshops, classes, consultations, research, resource publications, presentations, and the development and distribution of promotional materials.

Grant funds support administrative and program expenses directly related to the proposed programs and services. Grant amounts generally range from $5,000 to $25,000 and must be matched dollar for dollar by the organization. Grant amounts are based on the organization’s application rating, operating budget size, and Arts Council funding history.

How We Make Funding Decisions

Applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Quality and scope of organization’s programs and services
  • Appropriate payment to facilitators, speakers, presenters, artists, and other professionals
  • Benefit of services to arts community
  • Racial and cultural diversity of members and program participants
  • Strength of management and resources necessary to carry out programs and services
  • Quality of organization’s planning and evaluation process

How to Apply

Applicants to the Statewide Service Organizations (SSOs) category will apply for a full panel review on a three-year schedule. On off years, applicants will submit an updated application for staff review, which is also due by the 2016-17 deadline. The 2017-18 deadline is Wednesday, March 1, 2017. The application will be available online on January 6, 2017.  Applicants will submit the form electronically through the GO-Smart portal ( For more information about the online application process, please view our webinar.

Arts-in-healthcare, dance, traditional arts, and multi-arts SSOs will apply this March with a full application.  Presenting and theater SSOs will be reviewed by panels in 2018. Visual arts and literature SSOs will be reviewed by panels in 2019. If you have any questions, contact the program officer in your discipline for further information. 

Organizations that would like to apply to the category should contact the appropriate program officer to discuss eligibility. Generally, new applicants will only be reviewed the year their discipline is being reviewed by the panel. 

Make sure that the information you provide addresses the evaluation criteria.

  1. Provide a brief summary of your organization’s overall programs and services. If you serve constituents outside the state, indicate which of your programs and services are targeted to North Carolina artists and audiences. Specify the portion of your budget that serves North Carolina artists and audiences.
  2. Give a clear and concise overview of your programming plans for the grant year.
  3. Provide a description of the key personnel involved including facilitators, speakers, presenters, consultants, and artists. Explain how and why they were chosen and the rate of payment for their services.
  4. Provide a description of your membership and other recipients of your services. Describe how your programs and services will benefit them. Include estimated numbers and racial and cultural composition. Describe your marketing and publicity strategies.
  5. Describe your organization’s financial condition. Include information about any accumulated debt, deficits, endowments, surpluses, and cash reserves. Describe your principal sources of revenue and plans for long-term financial stability. Upload your audit for your most recently completed fiscal year (2015–2016), a 990, or a financial statement for the period.
  6. Describe your organization’s planning and evaluation process.

Applicants must submit the following support materials:

  • Samples of newsletters, publicity materials, resource publications, and other materials that reflect the scope of your programs and services
  • A financial statement or audit for your most recently completed fiscal year (2015–2016)

Update Application

The following information will be requested of organizations required to submit an update application:

  1. Provide a description of your key programs for the proposed grant period July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2018, and upload a schedule of events.
  2. Describe any significant changes in your organization (i.e., changes in administration, board diversity, physical plant, financial condition, organizational structure) that have occurred since your last year’s application.
  3. Upload an audit, 990 or financial statement for your most recently completed fiscal year (2015-2016) to the Support Materials section.

Staff Contacts

Dance organizations, contact:
Anjanée Bell

Literary, presenting and theater organizations, contact: 
David Potorti  
(919) 807-6512

Traditional arts organizations, contact:
Sally Peterson 
(919) 807-6507

Organizations conducting arts-in-healthcare projects or arts projects that serve people with disabilities, contact:
Emily Catherine Mealor

Visual arts, film, music, and multi-arts organizations, contact:
Jeff Pettus  
(919) 807-6513