Thank you for your interest in applying for a grant from Arts for Oakland Kids. Applications for our Project Mini-Grants are open from December 9, 2019 – January 20, 2020.  Grant recipients for the 2020-2021 school year will be notified in the first week of March, 2020.

The following information is being provided to help you apply for funding.  If you have questions about the application process, please email us at applications@artsforoaklandkids.org.

Arts for Oakland Kids (AOK), located in Oakland, California, awards Project Mini-Grants of up to $5,000 for hands-on arts education programs that take place in under-resourced Oakland public schools. While programs in public charter schools may be considered, first consideration will be given to programs that serve OUSD-run public schools that have no or low arts funding from their PTA.

AOK funds classroom teachers, independent teaching artists, schools, and arts organizations. AOK does not require our applicants to be 501(c)3 nonprofits or to have a fiscal sponsor.

December 9, 2019: Application submissions open for our Project Mini-Grants

January 20, 2020: All applications must be submitted by 11:59pm PST.

March 2020: Grantees notified the first week of March, 2020

Please note: The online application form with all required supporting documents attached must be received no later than 11:59pm PST, January 20, 2020. Due to the intensive nature of our review process, late or incomplete applications will not be reviewed. AOK will inform recipients of the Board’s decision in early March, and if you are chosen for a grant, AOK will contact you to discuss next steps. If you have questions about whether your program qualifies for grant funding, you can review our FAQ, or email us at applications@artsforoaklandkids.org.

We look forward to learning about your great work! Good luck and we look forward to hearing from you!

To be considered, programs must:

  • Provide hands-on arts education programs in which children participate in the direct experience of creating art.
  • Be supported by the school principal with active participation of a school liaison (for example, a classroom teacher, after-school director, administrator, etc.) to ensure the program’s success.
  • Be conducted at a school (or schools) or at an off-site location in conjunction with a school.
  • Serve students that attend under-resourced OUSD-run public schools. A full list of OUSD-run schools can be found here.

Arts for Oakland Kids does NOT require that grant funds be paid through a 501(c)3 non-profit or fiscal sponsor.

What we fund:

  • AOK only funds programs in which each child actively participates in creating art.
  • No minimum number of students is required. We evaluate programs individually based on general merit.
  • Programs must serve students enrolled in under-resourced OUSD-run public schools.
  • AOK does fund programs located at a site other than a public school (such as a community center) provided that the program primarily serves the target population of K-12 students enrolled in under-served Oakland public schools.
  • AOK funds program expenses that directly benefit the students involved in the arts education program, including: art supplies, teaching artist’s salary, costume materials, supplementary educational materials, etc.

What we do not fund: 

  • OUSD teacher or administrator pay
  • Transportation costs
  • Field trips
  • Food
  • Non-program-related supplies

Program Restrictions:

  • Programs are only eligible for funding once per school year.
  • AOK may fund the same program at the same school for three consecutive years, at the end of which a one-school-year break may be imposed before the program can  re-apply for funding.
  • Once funding has been awarded, applicants will be sent a Grant Agreement and Media Opt-Out form. Grantees MUST submit an AOK Media Opt-Out form in order to receive their funding. Funding will not be released without receipt of the Media Opt-Out form.

Arts for Oakland Kids does NOT require that grant funds be paid through a 501(c)(3) organization or fiscal sponsor. You may use a 501(c)(3) organization as a fiscal agent, so long as that organization does not keep any AOK grant funds as fees, commissions, percentages, administrative costs, or overhead expense.

If your organization or fiscal sponsor is a qualified IRS 501(c)(3) entity, please submit the 501(c)3 tax exempt letter and, if applicable, your fiscal sponsorship agreement, as attachments to your grant application.

Application Form

Fill out the Application Form to apply for funding for programs taking place during the 2020/2021 academic year.

All supporting documents will attach to this online Application Form. You will be unable to submit your application unless all documents are attached and the Application Form is complete.

Please read all guidelines and FAQ on our website before you begin, then fill out the form completely before you submit it. You cannot go back and change your application once it has been submitted.

The online application form is here. If you would like to view it offline while you are working, you can download the PDF here.

At the end of the form you will be able to upload your supporting documents.

PLEASE NOTE: You must have a Gmail account to submit documents through the application form. If this poses a hardship for you, please contact us at applications@artsforoaklandkids.org and we will help you create a temporary Gmail account.

The online application with all supporting documents must be received no later than 11:59pm January 20, 2020. Incomplete or late applications will not be reviewed. Recipients will be notified in the first week of March, 2020.

Attachments to the Application Form

  • Program Narrative
    • Two-three-page narrative (in 12-pt font) that includes a program description, goals, and learning objectives
    • Must be attached to the Application Form as a PDF
    • You may use the Narrative Template as a guide
    • Name the document as follows: [name of your program]Narrative2020.pdf
  • Resume of Lead Artist(s)/Instructor(s) for the program
    • Must be attached as a PDF to the Application Form
    • Name the document as follows: [name of your program]Resume2020.pdf
  • Letter of Support from the school principal(s):
    • Must be on the school’s letterhead
    • Must include a signature
    • Must include this information: Our school [does/does not] have an active PTA. During the last full school year, our PTA raised [$#] and directed [$#] to arts programs.
    • You may use the Letter of Support Template as a guide
    • Must be attached as a PDF to the Application Form
    • Name the document as follows: [name of your program]LOS2020.pdf
  • Project Budget
    • All applicants, regardless of 501(c)3 status, must submit a completed project budget
    • Must be attached as a PDF to the Application Form
    • Name the document as follows: [name of your program]ProjectBudget2020.pdf
    • Here are sample project budgets you may use as templates, depending on the size of your program.
  • Organizational Budget, if applicable
    • If your program is part of a larger organization, please provide your most recent annual budget and prior year’s actuals in a side-by-side format on one document
    • Must be attached as a PDF to the Application Form
    • Name the document as follows: [name of your program]OrgBudget2020.pdf
  • Tax Exempt letter, if applicable
    • If your program is part of a 501(c)3 nonprofit, please submit a copy of your IRS tax exemption letter
    • Must be attached as a PDF to the Application Form
    • Name the document as follows: [name of your program]C3Letter2020.pdf
  • Fiscal Sponsorship Agreement

AOK does NOT require our applicants to have 501(c)3 status. However, if you use a 501(c)3 organization as a fiscal sponsor for this grant, that organization cannot keep any AOK grant funds as fees, commissions, percentages, administrative costs, or overhead expense. If your program is under a fiscal sponsor, please submit:

    • A copy of the fiscal sponsor’s IRS tax exemption letter
    • A copy of your fiscal sponsorship agreement
    • Must be attached as PDFs to the Application Form
    • Name the documents as follows:
      • [name of your program]SponsorC3Letter2020.pdf
      • [name of your program]SponsorAgreement2020.pdf

After you complete the online application, we strongly advise you to print a completed copy for your records.

The Application Form has several sections, and you should gather the information you will need before you start. Once you’ve submitted the application, you won’t be able to go back and change it or add to it.

You can view a PDF of the application form here. Once you are ready, you will need to enter all information into the online Application Form. Applications submitted as hard copies or via email will not be accepted.

The final section of the application is a list of additional documents you are required to submit. In the past, you had to mail or email these documents to us, but this year we’ve added functionality so you can attach these documents directly to the form. Details on all documents and links to samples and templates can be found in the “Required Documents” section of this How To Apply webpage. PLEASE NOTE: You must have a Gmail account to submit documents through the application form. If this poses a hardship for you, please contact us at applications@artsforoaklandkids.org and we will help you create a temporary Gmail account.

Once your form is complete and all required attachments (Narrative, Resume, Project Budget, and Letter from the Principal(s)) are uploaded, you will be able to submit the completed application. You will not be able to submit an incomplete form, nor can you return to the form and change or add to it, so please give yourself plenty of time to gather all needed documents and information prior to the January 20 deadline.

The completed application must be submitted before 11:59pm PST January 20, 2020.

After you complete the online application, print a completed copy for your records.

Once your application and supporting documents are submitted, a member of AOK’s Board (your assigned board liaison) may contact you to discuss the proposed program.

If funding is awarded, applicants will be sent a Grant Agreement and Media Opt-Out form. Grantees must return both of these completed forms in order to receive their funding. Funding will not be released until both completed forms have been completed and returned to AOK.

AOK’s Executive Director will inform you of the Board’s decision and discuss your next steps.  Good luck and we look forward to hearing from you!

AOK requires grantees to submit their completed Final Report Form within 30 days of the conclusion of the program period. Download a PDF of the form here.

Final Reports should include a detailed summary of the program and 3-5 images, recordings, or other media that show participants involved in the program.

The final report and all accompanying images, recordings, or other materials should be submitted electronically and become the property of Arts for Oakland Kids. The funded program and its agents grant non-exclusive copyright ownership to Arts for Oakland Kids and its partners to reproduce such report photographs and other program materials for marketing purposes as agreed to in the Funding Agreement.

This section will be updated weekly, so please check back regularly. If you have questions, please contact us at applications@artsforoaklandkids.org

  • I’m new to grant writing, and I’ve never created a budget before. How do I do that?

Creating a budget is a fundamental part of asking for money to support your project. Here is a helpful document on how to create a budget. You can also look at these sample budgets that we created for potential programs of various sizes.

  • What is AOK looking for in a program?
Here is a more information on the types of programs AOK is looking for.

Thank you for your interest in Arts for Oakland Kids!  

If you have questions about the grant process, please email us at applications@artsforoaklandkids.org.