GO Queens Grant
General Operating Support Grant for Queens-based Arts Organizations
This program is funded by The Howard Gilman Foundation.
The Flushing Town Hall GO Queens Grant program will fund Queens-based arts and culture organizations to support their mission and work in the community. Flushing Town Hall (FTH) will award twenty-five $10,000 grants to Queens-based arts and culture nonprofit organizations with annual operating budgets under $250,000. These unrestricted funds can be used for General Operating Support (GOS) to help the granted organization grow. Some funds may be used for 2024 programs, at the discretion of the applying organization.
With this new funding, we look to help sustain local not-for-profit organizations and further promote their growth and creativity as they recover from the impacts of COVID and its economic fallout.
Types Of Activity/Programming Eligible For Support
These funds will be for General Operating Support rather than project-based, and can be used for eligible expenses including, but not limited to:
- Staff Salaries (for current employees, as well as for hiring new employees)
- Space/Office Rent
- Marketing Costs
- Equipment and Supply Purchases
- Other Day-to-Day Operational Needs
- 2024 program expenses
Eligibility Requirements For Applicants
Eligible organizations must:
- Be Queens-based
- Have a valid mailing address in Queens (PO Boxes are accepted.)
- Have been in existence and active for at least one year
- Have an operating budget of $250,000 or less in the most recent completed fiscal year
- Applying organizations must submit their operating budget from the most recent completed fiscal year for panel review
- Have arts or culture be a central part of the organization’s mission and work
- Show how their work in the community strengthens and enriches Queens and NYC
- Have nonprofit status
- The following proofs of nonprofit status are acceptable:
- A 501(c)(3) determination letter from the IRS
- Documentation of charter by the NY State Board of Regents under section 216 of the State Education Law
- A current NY State Bureau of Charities filing receipt
- Documentation of incorporation under section 402 of the NY State Not-for-Profit Corporation Law
- The following proofs of nonprofit status are acceptable:
- If an organization does not have nonprofit status, they can apply with a fiscal sponsor
- Eligible fiscal sponsors can be NYC-based (not just Queens), but the applying organization must still be Queens-based
- Fiscal sponsors must provide the same proof of nonprofit status as previously mentioned for
- Fiscal sponsors are not subject to the $250,000 operating budget restriction, but the sponsored organization applying must show they have met this budget threshold
Fiscal Sponsors are responsible for:
- Knowledge and understanding of grant opportunity criteria and relevant guidelines.
- Ensuring work for which funding is sought will occur within the appropriate contract period and required service area.
- Consulting with the organization regarding eligibility and conveying all relevant grant application information, including deadlines and online access details.
- Registering requests and submitting applications with all required supporting information, including an Organizational Budget and Proof of Nonprofit Status (where applicable).
- Executing a letter of commitment with the sponsored organization that clearly outlines the administration of the grant and defines mutual responsibilities.
- Informing sponsored group/artist of funding decisions in a timely manner (prior to the expiration of the appeals period).
- Receiving and disbursing granted funds and ensuring that all relevant tax filings and reporting are executed as appropriate. Fiscal sponsors must issue W-9s to grantees that are organizations without nonprofit status, with grants greater than $600 prior to issuing the grant award check, and a 1099 tax form must be issued for the grantees' tax purposes.
- Submitting a final report on the expenditure of the grant funds after the end of the contract period.
FTH will host information sessions to discuss the GO Queens Grant and other grant opportunities throughout Fall 2023. FTH will also cover eligibility requirements and best application practices. Information sessions will be in-person in locations throughout Queens. For those unable to attend in-person, two sessions will also be held over Zoom.
All applicants to the GO Queens Grant are required to attend an information session. If you cannot attend an information session, please reach out to Dan Bamba at Flushing Town Hall to see if special arrangements can be made.
Application Deadline: Tuesday, December 19, 2023, 11:59pm ET
Grantee Notification: March 2024
Organizations are required to complete and submit their application using the Submittable platform. Applicants must submit the following:
- Application Narrative
- Proof of Nonprofit Status or Fiscal Sponsorship Documentation (see below)
- Annual Operating Budget from the most recent completed fiscal year
- Overview of the organization’s principal members (board of directors, advisory board, or any other oversight structures) and primary team members (paid staff and/or unpaid volunteers, if applicable)
- Work Samples & Promotional Materials from programs held in the past 1-2 years
If applying with a fiscal sponsor, applicants must also submit:
- Fiscal Sponsor proof of nonprofit status
- Fiscal Sponsor’s annual operating budget from the most recently completed fiscal year
- A letter of commitment with the sponsored organization that clearly outlines the administration of the grant and defines mutual responsibilities.
- The letter of commitment is required on the fiscal sponsor’s letterhead.
To demonstrate an organization’s financial and managerial competency, applicants must submit an annual operating budget from the most recently completed fiscal year. Applicants may submit their budgets in whatever format they wish. Budget notes to explain discrepancies or anything else are acceptable.
Please note – there is no financial match amount required to apply for this grant.
Arts and Culture Requirement
Eligible applicants must have arts or culture as a central part of the organization’s mission and work. This will be demonstrated by the application narrative, highlighting the organization’s mission statement, community involvement, and past and upcoming programs. Applicants will also submit documentation of past arts and culture events through work samples and promotional materials.
Panel Review Process
Grant decisions will be made by a review panel administered by Flushing Town Hall. They will review and score submissions giving recommendations for funding. Panelists will include Queens community leaders, arts and culture professionals, and members of the arts community.
Applications will be scored using a holistic rubric that considers:
- Organizational Merit – Through their mission statement and narrative, does the applying organization show that they are a strong, active arts and culture organization that offers distinct, well-designed programs that align with their mission?
- Financial & Managerial Competency – Does the applying organization demonstrate sound financial management? If an organization has had a deficit in previous fiscal years, are they able to explain to the panel the circumstances around those shortfalls?
- Community Impact – Does the applicant clearly define the communities that they work with, and is their programming aligned with the needs and goals of that community? Does the organization effectively enrich the arts and culture of their defined community (and Queens as a whole)?
Applications are reviewed each year in the context of:
- The above scoring criteria
- Available funding
- Competitive evaluation against other applicants
Selected organizations will receive $10,000 to support their operation for the calendar year of 2024. The funds may be spent according to their proposal in their application.
Throughout the year, grantees will have 1-2 site visits with a representative of Flushing Town Hall. During these onsite meetings, the FTH representative will have conversations with funded organizations to learn about the work they are doing, what supports they need and if FTH can help, as well as to continue to form active relationships with our grantees.
At the end of December 2024, grantees will be required to submit a final report detailing what the grant funds were used for (along with receipts and invoices), and how the funds helped the organization grow and achieve their mission.
About the Howard Gilman Foundation: Howard Gilman believed in the power of the arts to transform lives. THE HOWARD GILMAN FOUNDATION honors his legacy by supporting the most robust, innovative, and promising performing arts organizations in New York City. More information on the Foundation’s cultural investments may be found on its website www.howardgilmanfoundation.org