Arts Funding Project Guidelines & Evaluation Criteria

Guidelines and Forms


Evaluation Criteria

Scoring Rubrics

Applications that are not prepared according to stated guidelines will be assessed a 10-point penalty.

Project Guidelines

Education Projects
The purpose of this program is to support more effective involvement of artists and arts organizations in the life-long learning process of all citizens. The program seeks to provide residents with a greater opportunity to participate in quality visual, literary, and performing arts experiences by one or more of the following:

  • Developing audiences through art in education, programming for non-traditional audiences in non-traditional venues, forging non-traditional links in the community
  • Providing new arts experiences
  • Integrating art in all aspects of life, targeting those not fully participating in the arts such as the business community, senior citizens, social service agencies, etc.
  • Increasing the interaction between arts organizations and artists in the education of youth
  • Enhancing classroom teachers’ ability to teach about and with the arts

Examples of Education Projects…classes, workshops, seminars, symposiums, in-school programming, literary publications, etc. If you are not sure that your proposed project fits within the guidelines, contact OCA staff.

Presentation Projects
The purpose of this program is to maintain and enhance the quality of arts services and to broaden the artistic scope of the city’s cultural activities. The program seeks to provide residents with a greater opportunity to be exposed to traditional artistic activities as well as new and imaginative endeavors in visual, performing and literary arts by one or more of the following:

  • Assisting local nonprofit arts organizations in producing and/or presenting quality arts programs
  • Increasing the availability and range of quality arts experiences throughout the community
  • Developing a broader audience base for a range of creative and artistic experiences
  • Promoting excellence, diversity and vitality in Columbia’s cultural environment

Examples of Presentation Projects…concerts, performing arts series, special events, exhibits, etc. If you are not sure that your project fits within the guidelines, contact OCA staff.

Combined Applications – Education & Presentation
Organizations with distinct programming in both presentation and education that wish to request support in both areas, must submit a combined application. The purposes of both programs, as listed above, still apply. See below for criteria that must be addressed as well. A combined project budget should be submitted, not two separate project budgets. Organizations preparing a combined application are encouraged to consult with the OCA staff and/or submit for a draft review (see application assistance).