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About the Grants

66 Neighborhood Projects Funded

Neighborhood Connections, with additional funding from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture, announces $150,000 in grants to 66 neighborhood projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland.

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture, Cuyahoga County’s local public funder for arts and culture, will co-fund 25 of the resident-led arts and culture projects through a partnership with Neighborhood Connections.

See a complete list of the projects funded here.

Some of projects are:

  • Hands That Speak Volumes, Inc.* will receive $1,400 for Everybody Can Make Music, workshops and drum sessions for the deaf or hard of hearing in downtown Cleveland.
  • African American Men Who Excel in Fairfax will receive $3,000 for Developing Youth to Make a Difference in the Community After School Program, a mentoring and tutoring program for elementary and middle school kids.
  • Ty and the Knight Writer LLC* will receive $2,000 for Youth Fighting Stigma, an intergenerational program where 20 mental health patients write their memoirs, which are then designed and edited by youth in Midtown.
  • Fullerton Block Club in Slavic Village will receive $3,000 for Bike-a-Thon and Night Out Against Crime. These two events will help strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships.
  • Clair Superior Youth Leadership Council* will receive funds for a Teen Center that will host teen-led cooking, art, skateboarding, computer and gardening programs for leadership development in St. Clair Superior.

* Co-funded by Cuyahoga Arts & Culture and Neighborhood Connections.

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture invested $85,000 in Neighborhood Connections in 2014 to fund vibrant arts and cultural programs in Cleveland and East Cleveland, with the aim to support community-based arts and culture activities organized by and for residents.

“We believe that empowered, active residents are at the heart of the Cleveland renaissance,” said Tom O’Brien, program director of Neighborhood Connections. “We see Neighborhood Connections grants as an investment in those folks and their innovative ideas, which are invigorating our city block by block.”

“Cuyahoga Arts & Culture’s vision is to create energetic neighborhoods that are infused with arts and culture,” said Karen Gahl-Mills, Cuyahoga Arts & Culture’s executive director.  “A partnership with Neighborhood Connections has ensured that public funding, which comes from the community, is helping residents to make their neighborhoods more vibrant.”

Neighborhood Connections’ grant program offers grants of $500 to $5,000 twice a year in May and November to groups of residents in Cleveland and East Cleveland who organize projects to improve the quality of life in their neighborhood.  Groups are encouraged to work with partners, and to propose creative solutions to challenges in their neighborhood.

 

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few of the most frequently asked about the grant program:

Can an individual receive money from the Neighborhood Connections program?

Individuals are not eligible.

Will grant dollars be distributed evenly among Cleveland neighborhoods and East Cleveland?
When possible, we attempt to provide an equitable share of funding to each neighborhood. However, all grant applications will be reviewed on their merits and some neighborhoods receive a larger share of the money in any one funding round.

Does Neighborhood Connections fund other cities or suburbs outside of Cleveland neighborhoods?
Funding is available for programs or events that take place in Cleveland and in East Cleveland.

How much money will Neighborhood Connections provide to neighborhood projects?
Each year we distribute about $670,000 in two separate rounds with February and August deadlines.

How large are the grants available?
Grants range from $500 to $5,000. All projects require a dollar-for-dollar match in the form of cash, in-kind donated services, or the contribution of materials, supplies, and other program-related donations.

Are there any conditions on grants?
Organizations will be required to match the grant dollars either in outside funding or in-kind services and to complete assessments and evaluation forms as requested by the program.

Is funding available for renovation to a building that houses an organization?
Renovations to dwellings are not in the scope of Neighborhood Connections mission. This falls under the category of personal funding and, therefore, is not eligible.

What are the deadlines for submitting an application?
5 p.m. on the second Fridays in February and August.

Is there a conflict-of-interest policy which prevents members of the Grantmaking and Monitoring Committee from reviewing applications from groups that either they or their family members are involved with?
Yes.

How are the members of the Grantmaking Committee chosen and how long do they serve?
There are typically 18 to 24 members on the Grantmaking Committee representing the diverse skills and knowledge of Cleveland and East Cleveland.

At the end of each year, the committee selects additional alternates, who eventually become full committee members. Cleveland and East Cleveland community groups are asked for nominations each time new members are sought.

How long do Grantmaking and Monitoring Committee members serve?
Each member is appointed to a three-year term. If committee members resign before their term is completed, they are replaced by an alternate. Members can serve a maximum of two 3-year terms.

How can I become a member of the Grantmaking Committee?
Every year, Neighborhood Connections asks neighbors to nominate new committee members. Those selected will first serve as alternates and then will assume positions on the committee. Email us at neighborhoodconnections@clevefdn.org if you know of someone you’d like to nominate.

How long does it take once an application is submitted to go through the approval process and for us to receive funding?
Groups that are awarded funding will be notified approximately 10-12 weeks after submission. Organizations awarded grants will be required to attend a grant recipient orientation session where they will receive information on grant implementation.

Can I get help in putting together a grant application?
Neighborhood Connections will host grantseeker orientation sessions before each grant cycle to review how to complete application forms and answer questions.

Where do I send an application?
Neighborhood Connections
5000 Euclid Avenue
Suite 310
Cleveland, OH 44103

Can you refer me to anyone else for funding?
Click here for other funding opportunities for grassroots organizations. A good resource for both individuals and organizations is the Foundation Center. They do not provide funding themselves, but are well equipped to provide online resources to help grantseekers identify appropriate funders and develop targeted applications. The phone number for the Cleveland office is 216-861-1933.

Do I use the Neighborhood Connections application when applying for arts and cultural funds from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture?

Yes, please use the Neighborhood Connections proposal form.

Neighborhood Grants Announced!

Neighborhood Connections, the small-grants and grassroots community-building program affiliated with the Cleveland Foundation, has approved $341,892 in grants to support 100 different projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland.  Cuyahoga Arts & Culture, Cuyahoga County’s local public funder for arts and culture, will co-fund 46 of the resident-led arts and culture projects announced today through a unique partnership with Neighborhood Connections.

Highlights of the grants include:

·      The Cleveland Association of Black Storytellers* in Cleveland’s Hough neighborhood was awarded $2,700. The program, I Am Hough, will assist youth in identifying the assets of the Hough community and use storytelling arts to document these assets.

·      Praxis Fiber Workshop* in Cleveland’s North Collinwood neighborhood was awarded $3,045 for their Grand Opening Event. This weekend event, free and open to the public, will introduce a sampling of the different processes offered in the field of Fiber Art and encourage community art making.

·      The Urban Barber Association in Cleveland’s Cudell neighborhood was awarded $5,000 for their Care Cuts Project that aims to connect young men with adult mentors.

·      NxGen Preserve in Cleveland’s Stockyards neighborhood was awarded $1,500 to bring Peace and Unity to West 63rd Street by repurposing vacant land in the neighborhood to host game nights, harvest parties and other fun gatherings.

·      Literary Lots* in Cleveland’s Ohio City was awarded $2500 to transform vacant/underutilized lots into book themed locations, creating spaces for audiences of all ages to come together and explore literature, art, and the transformed space through educational and interactive programming.
*: Co-funded by Cuyahoga Arts & Culture and Neighborhood Connections.

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture invested $85,000 in Neighborhood Connections in 2014 to support vibrant arts and cultural programs in Cleveland and East Cleveland, with the aim to support community-based arts and culture activities organized by and for residents.

“Neighborhood Connections has spent more than ten years investing in residents through our small-grants program,” said Tom O’Brien, program director of Neighborhood Connections. “We believe active, civically-engaged residents are the foundation of a thriving city and region. We are thrilled that our partnership with Cuyahoga Arts & Culture allows our grants to reach even more resident groups.”

“Cuyahoga Arts & Culture’s funding comes from the community, and we are pleased that this partnership with Neighborhood Connections allows us to fund the great ideas residents have for their own communities,” said Karen Gahl-Mills, Cuyahoga Arts & Culture’s executive director.

For a complete list of Neighborhood Connections grants awarded,  click here.  The next deadline for proposals is August 8, 2014.

Neighborhood Connections’ grant program offers grants of $500 to $5,000 twice a year in November and May to groups of residents in Cleveland and East Cleveland who organize projects to improve the quality of life in their neighborhood.  Groups are encouraged to work with partners, and to propose creative solutions to challenges in their neighborhood.

About Neighborhood Connections

Neighborhood Connections is a grassroots community-building program created by the Cleveland Foundation in 2003. Neighborhood Connections awards small grants of less than $5,000 to fund citizen-led neighborhood projects, events, and activities that benefit Cleveland and East Cleveland. While most foundations solely extend grants to nonprofit organizations, Neighborhood Connections grants support the ideas of everyday people to make life better, right where they live.

Through its grants, Neighborhood Connections seeks to build community by connecting people in Cleveland’s neighborhoods and encouraging them to become more engaged with each other and the city around them.

Neighborhood Connections is guided by a grantmaking committee made up of 24 Cleveland and East Cleveland residents with a history of community involvement. The citizens’ committee reviews and approves all grants. Since 2003, Neighborhood Connections has awarded more than 1,800 grants totaling more than $6.9 million.  For more information, visit neighborhoodgrants.org

About Cuyahoga Arts & Culture

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture’s mission is to inspire and strengthen the community by investing arts and culture.  CAC was approved by Cuyahoga County voters in 2006, and since 2007, CAC has invested more than $112 million in 259 local arts and cultural organizations in Cuyahoga County.  In addition, through a partnership with Neighborhood Connections, CAC has co-funded 80 resident-led arts and culture projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland since 2013. 

CAC’s vision for its first ten years of public funding for arts and culture is to help build stronger, more resilient arts and culture organizations, create vibrant and energetic neighborhoods infused with culture, and establish Cuyahoga County as a hub of creative activity and a destination for artists.  For more information, visit cacgrants.org.