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Funding for Iowa Schools and Non-Profits

The EZ 1-2-3 Grant: Matching Funds up to $500
The Iowa Arts Council (IAC) offers an extremely simple way to get matching funds of up to $500: the EZ 1-2-3 Grant. The IAC makes the money available on a first-come, first-served basis; as long as the IAC has the funds, the money is yours. The grant money can be used to cover my fee, plus any mileage or hotel expenses. 

Since this grant is so easy to get, the money runs out quickly. Schools can apply starting July 1st for any program taking place in the upcoming school year. However, the funds are usually used up by November, so it’s best to apply by early fall. The IAC reviews applications daily and notifies schools about funding decisions within two weeks.

For complete information, go to the IAC website:
On the left side of the home page, click on the Funding link.
Click on Grants for PreK-12 Schools. (This grant is for non-profits as well.) Click on EZ 1-2-3 Grants.

This page provides all the guidelines. To download and print the application form, go to the links on the right side of that page and click on EZ 1-2-3 Grant Information - Application Instructions and Form. When that page opens up, scroll down a bit to find the EZ 1-2-3 Grant Application Form.

This one-page form is very easy to fill out. When complete, send it to the IAC with a contract from me. This contract replaces the Artist’s Confirmation form and is the only thing that needs to accompany the application form. If you have any questions, you can email them to the IAC; they reply promptly. I am happy to help you fill out the form or answer any questions.

Remember, as long as the IAC has the money and you have filled out the form correctly, you will get the funds, but be sure to apply before November.

Mini Grants:
Matching funds up to $1500 for Residencies of Five Days or Longer

The Iowa Arts Council also awards Mini Grants of up to $1,500 in matching funds for residencies that last a minimum of five days, though longer is recommended. Many schools and non-profits have received a Mini Grant to bring me in for a week. These residencies support a comprehensive and meaningful experience for students and include the following: one or more sessions with all classes (depending on school size), daily contact with core groups which perform with me for the entire school at the end of the week, community outreach and performances and teacher in-services for the school's staff and/or area music teachers. Extra activities such as African dance, cooking, or drum tuning may also be offered.

This grant application is much more detailed than the EZ 1-2-3 form, but the program is well worth the extra effort. Applications are filled out online and due by the first working day of the month before the residency begins; i.e., if the residency takes place in April, schools must submit their applications by March 1st, although the IAC recommends applying earlier than that.

Go to the IAC website:
On the left side of the home page, click on the Funding link. 
Click on Grants for preK-12 Schools. (This grant is for non-profits as well.) Click on Artist Residency Grants.

This takes you to the page entitled Artists in Schools and Communities Residency, Major and Mini Grants. The information on this page covers both Major and Mini Grants, because much of it is the same for both grants. Eventually the option to choose the link for Mini Grants will appear.

Connecting Kids and Culture Grant:
Polk and Dallas Counties, Grades K-5

This privately funded grant aims to provide local arts and cultural programs to every K-5 student in Polk and Dallas counties. Funds are allocated to each elementary school in Polk and Dallas counties and schools can use them either to bring an artist or cultural event into the classroom or take the class on a related field trip. Every eligible school receives funding based on $90 for every twenty-eight students. For example, if a school has 350 students, it will receive $1,125.

Schools can only invite artists who participate in the Connecting Kids and Culture program. Since I am on the Metro Arts Alliance roster, I am eligible.

To learn how to access this funding, contact your school principal. It is basically sitting in an account for your school, waiting to be used.

Metro Arts Alliance Education on Location Grant: $100
(For Central Iowa Schools and Community Centers)

This grant gives up to $100 to bring an artist for a program. My programs usually receive the full $100 grant. This grant is fairly easy to get.
Go to
Click on the education/outreach link.
Scroll down to the section entitled Metro Arts Education on Location Overview and Program Details.

This page gives limited information about the grant. After you read it, I recommend emailing their education outreach coordinator, Jana Anderson, for more details:




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