For many people, art is not just a nice-to-have, it’s a need-to-have.
Not only does it enhance our lives, but it also provides us with new ways of exploring ideas, thoughts, histories, cultures and even political landscapes.
And though we might be a little biased here at The Arts Partnership when it comes to instilling arts and appreciation for the arts in all aspects of modern living, we are always inspired by organizations that regard art with the same importance that we do.
Right now, we’re beyond honored to partner with Choice Bank on a pilot grants program that aims to invest in organizations and projects that will use the arts to make a valuable commitment to and impact on their community.
The grant project, called the Choice Bank Arts Partnership Grants, will provide seed funding to nonprofit organizations that want to bring arts into their own mission-related work. In addition, we hope to provide funding to qualifying groups, artists and educators working with underserved populations.
“We are very excited to partner with The Arts Partnership to extend the arts to more of our community,” Jay Lies, Choice Bank North Dakota market president, said. “Our local nonprofits work so hard to create change in the world. It’s an honor for us to provide them with the opportunity to spread their mission and raise awareness for their causes through the arts. Choice is committed to bettering the places we live. Investing in our communities to support the presence and accessibility of public art is integral to this value.”
Choice Bank was named 2021 Outstanding Business Supporter of the Arts in the Metro by The Arts Partnership.
Dayna Del Val, president and CEO of The Arts Partnership, said, “We recognize that many of our non-arts nonprofit colleagues know the arts would provide a terrific boon to those they serve but there isn’t seed money readily available to start the work – plus many of these groups will need guidance to easily and effectively incorporate the arts into their mission-based work. We’re grateful to Choice Bank for investing in this program because it’s something we’ve wanted to launch for a long time.”
For Choice Bank, this program is a natural extension of their people-first values. “Committed to making genuine connections through passionate and empowered people, Choice believes that when all citizens can thrive, it strengthens the whole community,” said Shelley Szudera, Choice Bank’s creative director and a board member of The Arts Partnership.
The projects may involve a single art form or incorporate multiple art forms, including dance, literature and writing, music, moving image media, theatre, traditional and folk arts and craft, or visual arts. Examples of these projects could include a mural, youth art projects, arts performance, arts education, or music education.
Grants will range from $250 to $1,500 and will be awarded to projects that:
- Provide seed money to use the arts to encourage new thinking about how to accomplish mission-related work
- Involve partnership and collaboration with arts groups or individual artists or arts educators
- Serve an underserved population or populations
“We want these pilot grants to be the pebble thrown into the center of the pond that creates ripples to the very edges of the pond,” Del Val said. “Ripples that help a child gain confidence and poise by participating in a music program. Ripples that help a veteran with PTSD find a calming activity through painting. Ripples that make a shelter for the un-homed feel like home. Ripples that introduce people to a variety of art-making styles, opportunities and experiences.”
Applicants for Choice Bank Arts Partnership Grants must be 501(c)3 nonprofit organizations or have pending 501(c)3 status and be based in and primarily serve Fargo, ND; Moorhead, MN; and/or West Fargo, ND.
Click here for guidelines and advisory meeting information.