Music Drives Us: Grants for Music

OVERVIEW: Music Drives Us is a small New England charity that provides organizational grants, musical performance grants, and scholarships to help support academic and community programs, music therapy, and assorted partnerships that promote quality music instruction in the northeast.

IP TAKE: Music Drives Us does most of their grantmaking in the New England area, so your program must support the communities in that region if you're going to attempt to apply.

PROFILE: Most grants through Music Drives Us average around $5,000 to $7,000, with a maximum of around $10,000. Grants are given to organizations in the New England are that providing both academic and community music education programs, music instruction, and public performances. They also provide musical instruments for schools and sponsor music therapy programs.

Organizational Grants are given in support of musical education in both the public and private school systems, as well as "charter schools, hospitals, assisted living facilities, nursing homes, YMCAs, Boys and Girls Clubs and similar institutions that have seen dramatic cuts in funding for musical education or who are unable to fund a music program within their institutions." They tend to favor programs that serve disadvantaged populations and also offer technical assistance to grant recipients for fundraising and development.

Performance Grants are given to groups who perform jazz, classical, blues, rock, and international music and are "struggling to find the money to bring their music to interested listeners at schools, after school programs, in town halls, and on town greens." So, basically if you have a band who is seeking to do community performances and you excite Music Drives Us with your application, they're likely to help you if they have the resources. They understand that these types of concerts are "on the verge of extinction," so they're happy to work with musicians seeking to broaden the public's exposure to different styles of music and try to compensate them as best as possible. Their main stipulation is that the concerts must be free and must have a musical education component.

Some recent programs that have received funding include Berkshire Children & Families, which received $5,100 for instruments and music accessories for an after school music program; Music at Eden's Edge, which received $5,000 for a chamber music concert series for elementary schools; and $5,000 for the Parents and Community Build Group for a local street fair.

You can contact Jackie DiNatale if you have a question regarding the grants: Grants@MusicDrivesUs.org. To keep appraised of grant cycles and deadlines, subscribe to Music Drives Us on Facebook and Twitter.

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