Application deadline: 4/12/2020

The Building for Equity Learning Circles are a monthly workshop series for community organizations that focuses on the skills and information needed to acquire, improve, and develop cultural facilities. Workshop topics include organizational readiness and leadership development, non-profit financials, fundraising, marketing, lease negotiations and tenant improvements, and a step-by-step review of a capital projects process.

To reach the broadest range of participation, workshop attendees will receive a stipend for their time. Sessions will be held at various King County locations and offered at varied evening and weekend times. The application also provides space to request reimbursement for childcare (up to $100) or other support that might remove barriers to participation. Organizations can participate in individual topic sessions or by being part of the year-long cohort.

Organizations may choose to participate in one or more individual workshop sessions without committing to the entire series. Organizations will receive $150 per individual participating (maximum 2) per workshop.

Organizations may apply to participate as part of a Cohort that engages with the full year long workshop series. Participating organizations should commit one individual—board member, staff member, or volunteer—who will attend each topic session. A second participant per organization may also participate in each workshop. The second participant may be different for each workshop and should be selected based on the workshop topic. Organizations participating in the Cohort will receive $25,000 in funding to begin implementing the skills gained through the Learning Circles. The current program plan includes room for 15 organizations to participate in the Cohort.

Your application will be evaluated according to the following:

  • How well you demonstrate a community-driven need to secure access to a cultural facility through long-term lease or purchase, or a need to significantly improve your existing facility.
  • Applicants for the Cohort will also be evaluated on the public benefit provided by the organization and their ability to demonstrate adequate infrastructure to utilize this support to build organizational capacity or make a lasting impact to sustain their efforts.

The cohort is currently limited to 15 participating organizations. Should more than 15 organizations apply to participate, preference shall be given to qualifying organizations based on:

  • Organizations led by and serving Indigenous People residing in King County.
  • Organizations that predominantly serve populations in King County’s Communities of Opportunity Partner Areas. These are approximately defined as Rainier Valley, White Center, SeaTac, Tukwila, Seattle’s Central District, Kent and Snoqualmie Valley.
  • Organizations primarily serving a community in transition due to displacement.
  • Groups led by and predominately serving individuals from historically marginalized communities including: people with disabilities, people with low-incomes, residents in rural King County, the population in geographic areas or representative of cultures within county zip codes experiencing the most significant social inequities.

The following types of organizations may apply:

  • Federally-recognized 501(c)(3) arts, heritage, and historic preservation-focused organizations, public corporations, tribal governments or organizations fiscally-sponsored by a qualifying partner organization.
  • Your organization must have a two-year minimum operating history demonstrating arts and cultural contributions to the community with core staff, volunteers, or boards that reflect the community you serve.
  • Organizations with an annual operating budget between $25,000–$500,000 are being prioritized for this program. If your organization’s budget falls outside of this range, please contact us to discuss eligibility.

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