Culture Blocks Creative Activator Fellowship  

Overview

The Creative Activator Fellowship provides funding for creative individuals, culture bearers and keepers, and artisans living within the Culture Blocks program geography to execute art, science, history, and/or heritage activities in the area where they live. Fellowship awards of $5,000 will be made to Individuals to support the design and facilitation of community-based and community-engaged creative activities that occur in spaces close to where the intended audience and fellow live. Fellowship activities may range in size and duration from a multi-month series of small-scale events to single day large-scale events.

Eligibility

Please consider applying if you meet the following criteria –

  • You are at least 18 years of age and eligible to receive an IRS Form 1099 for miscellaneous income.
  • You have an established practice in one or more creative disciplines, evidenced by past paid work in the discipline(s) and demonstrated by the submission of resume and work samples.
  • You currently reside (and have for at least the past three (3) consecutive years) in one the following program areas: West Charlotte; North End Charlotte/Sugar Creek/Hidden Valley; East Charlotte; Southwest Charlotte; or Mallard Creek/Prosperity/University City. Note: If awarded, proof of residency will be required.
  • You have a demonstrated ability to use your creative talents to engage residents in art, science, history, or heritage activities.
  • You have written confirmation from your neighborhood organization or two (2) neighbors currently residing in your area confirming community support of your proposed activities.
  • Collaboration is welcomed. You may use the fellowship funds to create/deliver work with other individuals; however, you must serve as the lead creative for all funded activity.
  • Activities must take place within the geographic area in which you reside at locations that are open to the public.
  • Activities must respond to community feedback as listed within the Culture Blocks Program Themes.
  • Activities must occur between January 1, 2018 and December 31, 2018.

Restrictions 

Prior to applying, please consider the following list of requests that are not supported:

  • Applicants may not be enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting program during the time of their fellowship.
  • Applicants that have delinquent paperwork for a previously-funded ASC grant are not eligible to apply.
  • Activities that do not reach a broader audience (only church membership or faculty/student body) and/or contain proselytizing religious content are not eligible.
  • Activities that involve work with preK-12 children during the school day are not eligible.
  • Activities that are designed to serve as a fundraiser are not eligible (e.g. galas, auctions, etc.).
  • Activities that occur outside of Mecklenburg County are not eligible (e.g. touring, travel, etc.).
  • Organizations are not eligible to apply, nor may fellowship activity be the work of an Organization. See Culture Blocks Program Investment Application.
  • Requests to further the applicant’s creative development or to purchase equipment for that purpose are not eligible. See Regional Artist Project Grants and Creative Renewal Fellowship.

Fellowship Amount

ASC will award up to two $5,000 fellowships in each of the six geographic areas of the Culture Blocks program. Only one application per individual will be accepted annually. Matching funds are not required; however, if the cost of the proposed fellowship activity exceeds the $5,000 fellowship amount, the applicant must show additional funding source(s).

Payments will be made in two installments only: $3,000 and $2,000 per a Funding Schedule that will be issued to fellows. The award will be made payable directly to the individual fellowship recipient and subject to IRS 1099 income statement reporting by ASC. Each fellowship recipient will be required to submit an IRS W-9 form so that an IRS 1099 income statement can be issued by ASC for the fellow’s tax records. All taxes and reporting of taxes will be the responsibility of the fellowship recipient.

Collective Learning Opportunities

Fellows are required to attend an ASC-sponsored Community Engagement training and a final program evaluation meeting – both offered at no cost to participants.

Support Period

Fellowship activity must take place between January 1, 2018 and December 31, 2018. The awarded funds cannot be spent prior to or after this period.

Application Deadline

Friday, November 3, 2017 at noon. Applicants are encouraged to contact the ASC Culture Blocks Program Director prior to applying.

How to Apply

All applications and work samples must be submitted via the online application system.

Begin a new application.

Continue a previously started application.

Award Notification

Electronically by January 1, 2018.


Frequently Asked Questions 

Q: How much is the fellowship award?

A: Fellowship awards will be for $5,000. These funds are designed to compensate you and cover project/event related expenses. The budget and proposal must clearly reflect the plan for how funding will support the execution of creative activities in the program area where the applicant resides.

Q: What can the funding be used for?

A: Funding must be used to support the design and facilitation of creative activities. Your fellowship activity may range in size and duration from a multi-month series of small-scale events to a single day large-scale event. The activity may occur in a neighborhood park, sidewalks, a nearby church or community center, grocery store, laundromat, or other location that is open and accessible to community. Note that you are responsible for securing permission for use of space needed to conduct your fellowship activity.

In most cases, we assume your fellowship expenses will include a fee to yourself, materials/supplies and promotional expenses. In some cases, expenses may also include fees to other individuals for services rendered and space rental. Other fellowship activity related expenses may also be eligible. If you are unsure if you can use funds for a specific expense, please see the list of ineligible expenses below or contact the ASC Program Director.

Ineligible expenses:

  • Prizes, including scholarships, tuition or financial awards.
  • Purchase of artifacts or artwork.
  • Capital expenditures – funds for expenses for purchase of buildings or real estate, renovations or improvements involving structural changes, payments for roads, driveways or parking lots, or permanent and generally immobile equipment such as grid systems or central air conditioning. This also includes acquisitions, which are expenses for additions to a collection of art.
  • Contingency funds – funds for an activity that may occur but that is not likely or intended.
  • Costs for selling and/or marketing any products or services of the applicant unrelated to the funded activities.
  • Deficit reduction, bad debts, interest on loans, indirect cost rate expenses, losses on other awards or contracts, or fines, penalties, or litigation costs.
  • Donations and contributions to other individuals or organizations.
  • Fundraising and investment management costs.
  • Goods or services for personal use of the applicant.
  • Lobbying expenses.
  • Organizational establishment or reorganization costs.

Q: Can I request funding to support a public art project?
A: Requests for funding to support public art projects must meet the above stated criteria and:

  • Define the community that will engage in and be the beneficiary of the project.
  • Display evidence that the community will be involved in the identification of the project purpose and concept.
  • Display evidence that the applicant will engage the community in the development and/or fabrication of the work.

Requests that do not follow this process will be considered ineligible. Additionally, please note that a common obstacle faced by these type projects is securing a suitable location for the work, especially if the proposed location is publicly owned. If funding is awarded for a public art project, the applicant must submit proof that a location has been secured prior to the disbursement of the first payment.

Q: What type of work samples will I need to submit?

A: Up to 8 images or 5 minutes of video – demonstrating the quality and nature of your work. Ideally, this should include a demonstration of past community-based/community-engaged work. Work samples should be of work you have completed within the past three years.

Work samples must be submitted as digital files or hyperlinks within the online application. If submitting hyperlinks to videos, please include them as a part of a word document or PDF.

Q: What other materials will I need to submit?

A: In addition to the work samples listed above, you will be asked to upload the following to the online application:

  • Work Sample List – This should explain the work samples in a one-page document which includes:
    • Title of Work Sample(s)
    • Date(s) of Completion
    • Dimensions (visual artists) or Duration (film/media artists)
    • Medium or Format (i.e. ceramic, mixed media, DVD)
    • Your Role (i.e. artist, director, actor, composer, etc.)
    • A one-sentence statement on the specific work sample
  • Resume – This should demonstrate your past paid work in your creative discipline(s) (arts/science/history).
  • Narrative – This proposal should outline activities you plan to execute during the fellowship period using the award. The template is provided in the online application.
  • Budget – This should reflect proposed project expenses using the template provided in the online application.
  • Letter(s) of Support – This should reflect support from your neighborhood organization or two (2) neighbors currently residing in the program area.

No additional support materials will be accepted. More information about these materials is available in the online application.

Q: How will my application be reviewed?

A: As you prepare your application, it is important to represent yourself well and clearly articulate the value and impact of your proposed fellowship activities and how they respond to the community in which you reside. Applications will be reviewed by your responses to open-ended style questions within the application and submission of required attachments.

Applications will be reviewed by a panel of residents including individuals who reside in the program areas and other creative individuals. All panelists are required to adhere to ASC’s Conflict of Interest policy.  Panelists will assess each fellowship application based on the following criteria:

  • Commitment to creative excellence, as evidenced by resume and work samples.
  • Demonstrated ability to lead community-based/community-engaged creative activities, as evidenced by resume, work samples, and proposal narrative.
  • Plan for fellowship activity that will impact the community’s access to creative activity, as evidenced by proposal narrative.
  • Plan for fellowship activity that is feasible and realistic, as demonstrated by proposal narrative and budget.

Q: How will I receive payment if awarded a fellowship?

A: To accept the funding, you must complete and return a signed agreement. Upon receipt of the signed Agreement and other requirements, you will receive the first payment ($3,000) according the payment schedule provided.

The final payment ($2,000) will be made upon the submission of a Final Report and Budget. Final paperwork includes a report, at least two forms of project documentation (program, photos, receipts, etc.), and other paperwork as required.

The award will be made payable directly to the individual fellowship recipient and subject to IRS 1099 income statement reporting by ASC. Each fellowship recipient will be required to submit an IRS W-9 form so that an IRS 1099 income statement can be issued by ASC for the fellow’s tax records. All taxes and reporting of taxes will be the responsibility of the fellowship recipient.

Q: What other requirements apply during the fellowship period?

A: In addition to the execution of the creative activation plan submitted in the application, fellows are required to attend an ASC sponsored Community Engagement training and a final program evaluation meeting – both offered at no cost to participants.

Fellows must credit the ASC Culture Blocks program in all promotional materials related to the funded activities. All public facing programs supported by the fellowship must be submitted to CharlotteCultureGuide.com.

Q: What types of projects have been awarded in the past?
A: This is the first-time ASC has requested applications for the Creative Activator Fellowship. View other investments ASC has made through the Culture Blocks program.

Q: What assistance is provided to applicants?

A: It is strongly encouraged that you contact the ASC Culture Blocks Program Director as you develop your application by emailing cultureblocks@artsandscience.org or calling 704-335-3043.

Q: I have more questions. Where can I get help?
A: ASC’s Cultural & Community Investment staff is available to answer questions as you develop your application. Please contact the ASC Culture Blocks Program Director at 704-335-3043 or cultureblocks@artsandscience.org.

Download Creative Activator Fellowship Guidelines and FAQs

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