Iowa Arts Council launches program to help small nonprofit arts organizations with organization and financial resources

A section of the 4,400 square foot Broadway Street Mural completed in 2020 after years of collaboration between SDNA and local volunteers. — Adria Charpentier/Petit Village

the Iowa Arts Council (IAC) is now accepting applications for a program designed to help small nonprofit arts and culture organizations get their finances in order and develop new organizational skills. the Iowa Cultural Leadership Cohort will be a two-year program, starting this summer on July 1 and running until June 30, 2024.

The first year of the program will center around three in-person workshops, according to the IAC site.

september 2022 – Operations workshop for all participants
Topics may include: budgeting, volunteer management, board development, foundational documents

November 2022 – Workshop on sustainable development for all participants
Topics may include: financial resource development, leadership succession planning, audience development

January 2023 – Divide the cohort into two series of workshops – Management of collections and exhibitions and artistic programming (this may change according to the participating organizations)

In the second year of the program, participating organizations “will receive resources to support additional training and assistance identified in their action plan.”

To be eligible, a nonprofit organization focused on the arts, culture, or humanities must have been established on or before June 1, 2019, be a 501(c)(3) organization, and registered as such with from the office of the Iowa Secretary of State, and have “cash operating expenses of less than $500,000 at the time of application based on their last completed fiscal year. It must also have at least one staff member or volunteer who “works for the organization year round and is responsible for the oversight and management of the organization”.

More information, including how apps will be notedis available on the IAC website, as is a link to the online application portal. Application must be received no later than Friday, June 17 at 11:59 p.m.

Applications will be reviewed by a panel of Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs staff members. “Panel decisions are final and cannot be appealed if dissatisfied,” according to the site.

Organizations will be notified by email if they have been selected for the program. Notifications should be sent by July 1. Until then, the IAC says applicants “are encouraged to refrain from contacting staff for application status updates.”

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