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Community Arts Fund

HCF provides grants for projects that benefit Hamiltonians and by law, grants only to registered Canadian charities and other qualified donees as described in Section 110 of the Income Tax Act.  On occasion, not-for-profit organizations without charitable status may be sponsored by a registered charity under a fiscal sponsorship.  More information on fiscal sponsorships can be found here.

HCF invites proposals for funding from the Community Arts Fund in the following three categories:

  1. Community arts projects

Grants are available to support the development and creation of a community arts project.  Art practiced at a community level creates a powerful sense of inclusion, understanding and the possibility of self-expression among participants. It can involve one or more art practices, such as music, dance, theatre, visual arts, and storytelling, but the collaborative involvement of professional artists with community members is a necessary component.   Community may be defined as either a geographic community, i.e. neighbourhood, or a community of attribute/interest, i.e. mental health consumers, ethno-specific group.  Please include a resume of the artist(s) involved.

  1. Indigenous arts projects

The program will assist projects that have the transmission of arts skills and knowledge as their primary focus.  Projects may be in any artistic discipline – visual, music, theatre, dance or story.  Projects must be initiated and directed by Indigenous-led organizations with Indigenous artists.  For the purposes of this program, the term “Indigenous artists” refers to a person with Indigenous descent or heritage and includes First Nations, Métis or Inuit arts practitioners.

  1. Arts access and outreach

Grants are available to help ensure access to the arts and art programming for historically marginalized and underserved communities. Organizations who do not hold charitable status will need to partner with a charity for fiscal sponsorship, as identified on page 1. This category may include arts instruction, subsidizing the cost to attend arts performances and other strategies aimed at reducing or eliminating barriers to public engagement in the arts.    Please note that child/youth projects are not eligible in this category.

  • Examples of underserved communities include, but are not limited to, Indigenous peoples, official language minorities, LGBTQ2, immigrants, refugees, ethnically and/or racially diverse populations, persons living with disabilities or mental illness, the homeless, seniors, persons in conflict (or at risk of being in conflict) with the law, and persons living in low-income households.

Funding available:

It is anticipated that grants will be in the $1,000 to $15,000 range.

The following expenses are NOT eligible for funding through the Community Arts Fund:

  • capital campaigns
  • grants to individuals
  • endowment requests or deficit reduction
  • political or religious activities
  • research
  • activities outside of Hamilton

Application process:

Complete and submit the on-line grant application, with required attachments, by January 8, 2021.  **Use Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox or Apple Safari to open the application**

* If you are applying with a fiscal sponsor you must include a partnership agreement and your application must be signed by the Executive Director and Board Chair of the organization holding charitable status.

If you have any questions or require assistance, please contact Sharon Charters at: (905) 523-5600 x 242 /