Ayrshire Foundation: Grants for Dance

OVERVIEW: The Ayrshire Foundation supports philanthropy as investment in a better world, and it spreads its wealth across a wide range of opportunities to support change: youth, the elderly and disabled, science and the environment, healthcare, and community culture.

IP TAKE: Besides its geographic preferences, the Ayrshire Foundation has very few limitations on its grantmaking. It makes a lot of grants each year in order to invest in opportunities for a better world. The foundation sees “community culture” as a vital aspect of positive change and music as a core element of community culture.

PROFILE: The Ayrshire Foundation was founded in 1998 by James N. Gamble (the great grandson of the founder of Procter & Gamble) and his family in order to broaden the scope of their already-established personal philanthropy. Based in Pasadena, California, the foundation invests broadly in “the possibility of change and a better world” through the creation of opportunities that improve the lives of others. The foundation designates education, health, science, culture, and general welfare as its funding areas.

Dance support falls under the Ayrshire Foundation’s Community Culture funding area, through which the foundation seeks to support "local arts and historical institutions to enhance the vibrancy of our communities.” Grant seekers should be aware of the foundation’s other four areas of focus as well as its community culture giving. Whenever possible, Ayrshire prefers to serve cross purposes, particularly when it comes to its community culture grantmaking.

Grants range between $10,000 to $100,000. The foundation prioritizes three locations: the California Bay Area, the San Gabriel Valley of California, and Little Traverse, Michigan—all three are areas where James Gamble and his family have community ties. It funds organizations beyond these areas only minimally. For grant seekers who can tie their dance project to one of these locations, there is a wealth of possibility available with this foundation. Grants may be offered for multiple grant cycles or for just one year. Its giving prioritizes local, community work that fullfills a need. Past dance grantees include the Oberlin Dance Collective in San Francisco for support "with its planning for successor" (also considered a Youth Opportunities grant), and the Djerassi Resident Artists Program in Woodside, CA for a solar-ray canopy (also considered a Science & Environment grant). This resident artists program includes support of choreographers and dancers in the creation stages of their next project.

The Ayrshire Foundation requires potential grantees to first fill out a brief online form. The foundation will invite applicants for a full proposal if interested.

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