The Bay & Paul Foundations make grants with a desire to support a social movement that creates a just and ecologically sound society. Or, as the foundation says, “Our vision is of vibrant communities whose skillful collaborations assure just and ecologically robust outcomes for present and future generations.”
Community arts is an aspect of that vision, through The Bay & Paul Foundations' Arts & Humanities Education focus area. What may be particularly promising for your community arts program is the foundation's equal emphasis on education for adults as well as youth. That means more opportunities and more flexibility for how your program can synergize with the idea of arts education, which really is more closely related to arts engagement for this funder—placing it squarely in the community arts realm. The foundation encourages you to think outside the box:
. . . we favor initiatives that engage the broader community to help youth and adults acquire powerful expressive literacies and cross-cultural intelligences. Our grantees embrace the arts not as an adjunct or “enrichment” offering but as central to learning, growth, achievement, and an evolving sense of personal and collective identity.
This expression of arts education also fits in with the foundation's mission “to foster and accelerate initiatives that prepare agents of change working to strengthen our social compact and develop authentic solutions to the challenges of this pivotal century.”
Other key words reinforcing this foundation’s view of its granting as a “social compact” are found in its values statement: Courage, patience, humility, listening, understanding, collaboration, opportunities.
For community arts programs, recent support includes:
- $20,000 to the Flynn Center for the Performing Arts (Burlington, VT)
- $10,000 to the Groundswell Community Mural Project (Brooklyn, NY)
- $10,000 to Brooklyn Arts Exchange (Brooklyn, NY)
- $10,000 to the Burlington City Arts Foundation (Burlington, VT)
- $8,000 to Upper Valley Arts (Hanover, NH)
- $1,000 to Champlain Islands Celebration of the Arts (North Hero, VT).
This recent giving shows a geographic pattern. The Bay & Paul Foundations state a strongly preferred interest in supports arts programs in the New York City area, but it’s not an absolute. (For the record, Vermont is another geographic focus for this funder, as is clear above, though it’s not formally stated as such by the foundation.) The foundation has an open, online LOI process. Biannual deadlines vary; check the website for upcoming dates.