ValleyCreates Grants

ValleyCreates Grants

Programmatic Intent
The goal of the ValleyCreates grants is to help strengthen and connect the diverse community of arts and creativity nonprofits in the Pioneer Valley, by providing new opportunities for collaboration.

ValleyCreates Planning Grants seek to:

  1. Create meaningful change in the Valley through the arts
  2. Strengthen connections
  3. Foster collaboration
  4. Promote inclusivity and celebrate diversity

ValleyCreates first provides a planning grant to collaborations of three or more partners, to give time and resources to advance their idea to the point where, if selected, the applicants could begin implementation of their project in a timely manner. Planning grant grantees will have a period of 5 months to get their idea closer to an implementation stage. Activities over the 5-month period might include: information gathering, recruiting new partners, convening community members and potential audiences, and other activities that help advance the collaboration’s understanding of the project.

Implementation grants will be awarded through a competitive application process, to those who received a planning grant. It is understood that not all projects will receive funding for implementation.

Funding Information
Planning Grants: There is a total of $80,000 available for the ValleyCreates Planning Grant Program. Grant requests may range between $5,000 and $10,000 and up to 10 awards will be made (nine awards were made in 2019).

Implementation Grants: There is a total pool of $80,000 available in implementation funding, however, CFWM seeks to add to that funding pool by seeking co-investment from interested donors.

Funding Preference

CFWM gives preference to applications that incorporate the following:

  • New types of collaboration (cross-discipline; cross-sector, different relationship with existing partners)
  • Authentic community engagement
  • Reaching new audiences
  • Engaging/reaching under-served communities
  • Artist involvement in the planning process (if artists will be part of implementation)

Grant Process

The application process for a ValleyCreates Planning Grant will have three distinct steps:

  1. Screening phone call with program officer
  2. Submission of video application (see below for video application details)
  3. Submission of online documentation (only selected applicants will proceed to Step 3)

Applicant Eligibility

  • Applicants must have 501(c)3 status to apply as the lead agency for a collaboration.
  • All applicants must apply as a collaboration of at least three entities. Members of a collaboration can be 501 (c) 3 organizations, fiscally sponsored organizations, individual artists or for-profits.
  • No organization in the collaboration can hold more than 50% responsibility of the project nor receive more than 50% of the funding.
  • Lead agencies must have their primary office located in the Franklin, Hampshire or Hampden counties and serve residents of the Pioneer Valley.
  • All applicants must schedule a pre-application phone conversation with Nicole Bourdon, ValleyCreates Program Officer
  • Applicants must have been in operation under their current 501(c)3 status long enough to provide at least one full year of activity in the required financial documents.

To view overall eligibility guidelines for applicant organizations, click here.

Video Application Details

  • Applications will be in the form of an uploaded video. The video should have sufficiently clear audio and must address the following questions:
    • Name of the project
    • Names of the entities in the collaboration, what city/town each partner organization is located in, and the populations, however defined, that each organization traditionally serves.
    • Identification of the lead agency and verbal confirmation this organization is a 501(c)3.
    • What will be the role of each organization in the collaboration regarding the planning process (each partner should articulate their own role)?
    • What will the project you are planning for do?
    • What is necessary for your planning? What activities will you undertake and/or what are you trying to understand using this funding?
    • If implemented, why does this project matter?
    • If implemented, who does it impact?
    • The amount of money being requested for funding

Ineligible Grant Activities

Please click here to view activities that are ineligible for funding from any of CFWM’s grant programs.

Additional Information:

Grantees will be required to:

  • Participate in an interim meeting convened by CFWM. A representative of each organization in the collaboration is expected to attend.
  • Each collaboration must submit a written report documenting its activities and the results of its planning by 30 days after the project end date.

Application / Materials & Resources 

–Application is currently closed.

–Event and planning materials

Contact Info

Nicole Bourdon, ValleyCreates Program Officer: