ArtReach is a funding program designed to support youth arts initiatives in Toronto that foster youth engagement and provide high quality arts opportunities. $300,000 in grants are available each year to support youth arts projects, thanks to our amazing partnership with the Toronto Arts Council.
ArtReach aims to support innovative youth arts projects that may not be supported elsewhere. ArtReach is about access, reducing barriers, and increasing opportunities for youth, individual artists, and organizations/ collectives to create or continue quality arts projects or programming. New and emerging art forms will be considered, and are encouraged.
The initiatives we fund must:
ArtReach embraces a broad definition of art and is looking to support emerging, popular, and traditional art forms. This includes but is not limited to: music creation/ recording/ production, dance, drama/ theatre/ performing arts, creative writing, poetry, spoken word, carnival and circus, Indigenous arts, film and video, TV, radio, podcasting, culinary arts, photography, digital media, multimedia, visual arts, comic or zine making, graffiti and street art, graphic design, textiles, storytelling, fashion design, crafts, hip hop, aesthetics, etc.
Click here to see a list of the projects ArtReach has funded.
ArtReach’s funding mandate is to support projects being carried out by individual youth and youth-led groups and organizations, where leadership positions and decision-making responsibilities are held by young people 13-29 years of age. ArtReach’s main point of contact should be the young person leading the project, and young people must lead the application process and project management activities. We recognize that there are many models for youth-led projects (including those that include administrative partners and adult mentors). In your application please describe your model in detail.
ArtReach will fund:
Proposals from applicants that are not youth-led initiatives will only be considered where the barriers being faced by the youth participants are severe. In these cases, there must be a strong youth engagement model in place to allow for youth to still carry meaningful leadership roles. If this applies, please contact the program manager at email@example.com to discuss.
Individual artists, groups of artists, unincorporated organizations, nonprofits, and charitable organizations may apply for community project grants at the following funding levels. Make sure your budget accurately reflects what you need to complete your activities from start to finish.
Apply for a $5,000 pilot project if…
Apply for a $10,000 Phase One Project if…
You can ONLY apply for a $15,000 Phase Two Project If…
Only expenses directly related to the project can be included in your funding request. These may include:
If there are other expenses not included in the above list that are critical to the success of your project, please discuss this with ArtReach staff at firstname.lastname@example.org, as it may be eligible depending on the project.
ArtReach is not intended to and will not fund the following:
If your project is eligible, ArtReach’s Grant Review Team (GRT) will review your application and funding request. The GRT is a group of young volunteers representing youth, non-profit/community organizations and artists from a variety of artistic disciplines, backgrounds, and experiences. Results on the success of your application are announced within approximately 60 days of the deadline.
If your project is not approved for funding, you will be provided with feedback notes via email on why your application was declined, and advisable next steps.
A budget includes a detailed outline of project expenses (monies going out such as salaries for staff, rent, photocopying, etc) and revenues (monies coming in such as fundraising, grants, etc.). Budget expenses should include in-kind contributions (donations of service or product that would otherwise be an additional expense such as the donation of free meeting space in a community centre). For more info see our Grant Writing 101 toolkit
Projects funded are expected to include evaluation as one of the project’s activities. Evaluation looks at whether or not (and why) the project was successful in achieving its goals and objectives. There are many ways to collect this information, for more info see our Evaluation 101 toolkit
An artist that has demonstrated skills and/or training in his or her artistic field (not necessarily obtained in an academic institution); is recognized as such by his or her peers; is committed to devoting more time to the artistic activity if he or she can afford to; and has a history of public presentation
Meaningful Youth Engagement
This includes youth being involved in the governance of a group or organization, as well as being involved in decision making around project planning, implementation, management and evaluation. Note that ArtReach’s mandate is to support youth-led initiatives, where primary decision-making rests with young people aged 13-29.
Quality Arts Opportunities
This means that the project offers arts opportunities that go beyond an introduction to the art form and offer experiences that have a personal or emotional impact on the participant, and a positive impact on the broader community. They also provide participants with sufficient resources to develop tangible skills in the given art form.
A socially inclusive community is one in which every member can fully participate without barriers or discrimination. A project that promotes social inclusion supports youth to overcome barriers, or works with youth to break them down.
Refers to under-resourced geographic areas as well as under-resourced groups. This could include neighborhoods or Toronto Community Housing units (for example Chester Le or Flemingdon Park), as well as groups with specific experiences, cultures or identities (for example, youth who identify as Queer and/or Trans*, or youth in the Eritrean diaspora). ArtReach encourages applicants to describe their community, and the needs of its members, in their proposals.
A project work plan outlines the major activities and expected completion dates related to the project from start (planning) to finish (post-project evaluation). For example, a project work plan would include information about special events (e.g. performances, exhibitions), staffing, volunteer recruitment, fundraising, etc.
Youth who Have Experienced Exclusion
Youth who have been marginalized on the basis of race, neighbourhood, language, newcomer status, disability, gender, sexual orientation or any other factors.