WORCESTER, Mass. – The Worcester Arts Council (WAC) is now accepting grant applications for its FY24 funding cycle. The deadline to apply is October 17, 2023.
As part of a statewide network of Local Cultural Councils, WAC receives annual funding through Mass Cultural Council (MCC). For FY24, WAC will receive $226,00 from MCC to once again award thousands for local arts and cultural programs in Worcester to individuals, schools, libraries, nonprofits, associations that can establish a nonprofit objective, and other public agencies.
“The Worcester Arts Council is thrilled to support local arts and culture with our Fellowships and Project Grants again in 2024, and we are grateful to have received $226,000 in funding from Mass Cultural Council this year,” said WAC Chair Jennifer Riley. “There is a lot of creativity here in Worcester that is deserving of our support. This much-needed funding is vital to our creative community, and these grants make it possible for many projects, programs, and people to bring arts and culture to life across the city.”
WAC offers two types of grants: Project Grants and Fellowship Grants. Project Grants support individuals and organizations from Worcester County in developing projects and programs within Worcester that are innovative, collaborative, provide a public benefit, reach under-served populations, and demonstrate creative excellence. Fellowship Grants help Worcester artists of all trades in developing and exploring their work outside the structure of a specific project.
“Worcester’s creative landscape is incredible. We encourage all artists to apply, especially new ones who would like to elevate their craft and participate in events that are rooted in pulling the community together,” said Cultural Development Officer Fabian Barracks. “As we continue to advocate for increased funding, it is critical that we value the community’s needs, and one of those is to prioritize projects that promote Worcester’s diversity.”
While all projects within the realm of arts, sciences, and humanities will be considered, based on the feedback received from the Worcester community through its annual Funding Priorities Survey, WAC will give preference to grant applicants and projects that align with the following priorities for FY24:
● Project Categories | Projects that focus on public art, musical performances, arts education and instruction, and programs for all age groups from children to seniors.
● Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Access (DEIA) | Projects that elevate the voices and experiences of historically marginalized groups to highlight the current and historical diversity of Worcester. Projects should create opportunities for artists and community members through a DEIA lens.
● Locations | Projects that take place in or benefit areas of Worcester that are historically underserved.
WAC’s FY24 Grant guidelines and instructions on how to apply can be found at: www.worcesterma.gov/cultural-development/grants
All applications must be submitted online by 11:59 p.m. October 17, 2023. Late applications cannot be accepted for any reason. WAC will review all grant applications from November through December 2023. Applicants who are denied funding will be notified by early January 2024. Applicants who are awarded grants will be notified by mid-January 2024.
This year, WAC will host two virtual Grant Workshops to offer more flexibility for potential applicants. WAC encourages anyone who may be interested in learning more or applying, especially first-time applicants, to attend:
● WAC Grant Workshop Session 1: Thursday, Sept. 7 from 7-8 p.m. https://us06web.zoom.us/j/83414304494?pwd=L09YSzA5Q3BSemJaeldXTEcxWTY1UT09
● WAC Grant Workshop Session 2: Wednesday, Oct. 4 from 6:30-7:30 p.m. https://us06web.zoom.us/j/84612593758?pwd=eVVzcXZ0YzF2ZE5mUUJmVEgzemt1UT09
The WAC is chaired by Riley, and other members include Brandon Lewis (Vice Chair), Sean Brennan (Secretary), Christopher Rich (Treasurer), David Filar, Avae Thomas Quartey, Kristen Livoti, Shantelle Campbell, and Amy Sciannameo.