June 2, 2021
Florida: Grant-making Task Force
Many state arts agencies across the nation are assessing their grant programs and practices to identify ways to make funding more equitable and improve access to arts resources. The work undertaken by the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs (DCA) in this area is a recent example.
In January 2020, DCA appointed a Grant-making Task Force to help review and improve its grant-making reach and relevance. The core objective of this study was to advance DCA’s 2020-2025 strategic plan vision—to cultivate vibrant and thriving communities where arts and culture are integrated into every aspect of life for Floridians of all ages, abilities and backgrounds. The task force outlined the following three broad project goals:
- Create simpler, accessible, clearer pathways into and throughout the Division’s grants system to attract more applicants.
- Refine adjudication and allocations for greater equity in the distribution of state funds.
- Ensure more funds are available to support opportunities reaching more citizens.
To date, DCA has simplified its grant-making application language, revised scoring criteria and increased panel diversity. DCA is currently developing an annual communications plan, an introductory guide, a registration system to gather standard organizational data, and a contact database of arts and cultural organizations in Florida that do not currently apply to DCA for grant funding.
The COVID-19 crisis propelled DCA to reach out and engage organizations, artists and communities it had not engaged before. Additionally, an outreach initiative working group was established at the start of the project to expand the diversity, equity and inclusion grant-making reach of DCA to more communities.
When the project concluded in October 2020, the learnings from the task force and other national grant makers contributed to developing a report that offers recommendations for DCA’s consideration and steps to get there. For more information about this initiative or a copy of the report, contact Florida Division of Cultural Affairs Contracts and Grants Manager Teri Abstein.
In this Issue
From the President and CEO
State to State
- Florida: Grant-making Task Force
- Louisiana: Bayou Culture Collaborative
- Vermont: CreateVT Action Plan
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