William Penn Foundation

Call for Applications: $10M in Grants Available to BIPOC Arts Organizations

The William Penn Foundation is now accepting Letters of Interest for the "Philadelphia Cultural Treasures" funding opportunity now thru Jan. 14, 2022

William Penn Foundation Call for Entries for "Philadelphia Cultural Treasures"

The William Penn Foundation in collaboration with The Barra Foundation, Neubauer Family Foundation, The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, and the Wyncote Foundation, is currently accepting applications for “Philadelphia Cultural Treasures" to help aid the recovery of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) cultural groups, artists, and organizations with exceptional significance to Greater Philadelphia. The local initiative of the Ford Foundation’s national “America’s Cultural Treasures” initiative, will provide substantial, multi-year support for these entities to weather the impact of the pandemic and emerge stronger at its conclusion. The joint collaboration initiative will award $10 million in grants to support a racially, economically, and socially just COVID-19 recovery for local arts organizations.

“Philadelphia Cultural Treasures” offers three funding opportunities - multi-year general operating grants, fellowship grants, and project grants - with Letters of Interest being accepted for multi-year general operating support now through January 14, 2022. The next two funding opportunities will be announced in early 2022. Philadelphia-based arts and culture organizations who are interested in applying for general operating support must meet the following criteria for eligibility:

  • Organizations that are a 501(c)3 
  • Are majority BIPOC-led
  • Actively engage and serve BIPOC artists and audiences within the City of Philadelphia
  • Are arts and/or culture organizations located in the City of Philadelphia
  • Have been in operation for at least 5 years
  • Organizations that develop the work and practice of adult artists and culture-bearers (organizations with a primary mission to educate or train young people (K-12) are not eligible)



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“COVID-19 hit the cultural sector hard over the last two years, and communities of color have been disproportionately impacted, making the need to support the organizations led by and serving people of color essential to the health of our city,” said Judilee Reed, Program Director for Creative Communities at the William Penn Foundation. “Philadelphia’s Cultural Treasures acknowledges that cultural groups, artists, and organizations of color have long struggled with fewer financial resources than their white counterparts and will begin to address the challenges threatening the city’s cultural diversity by supporting the recovery of these organizations.”

“America’s Cultural Treasures” is an initiative acknowledging and honoring the diversity of artistic expression and excellence in America. It has generated more than $276 million in critical funding to more than 100 organizations led by and/or serving communities of color that have made a significant impact on America’s cultural landscape, despite historically limited resources.

“We are thrilled to partner with the William Penn Foundation and its collaborators to support arts organizations in Philadelphia,” said Margaret Morton, Director of Creativity and Free Expression for the Ford Foundation. “A thriving and equitable arts sector is critical for the city’s civic and cultural health, and we look forward to honoring and celebrating the diversity of cultural expression in Philadelphia.”

For additional information regarding criteria, FAQs, and the link to the application, click here. All Letters of Interest must be received by 6 p.m. EST, Friday, January 14, 2022. For any questions about the application process or submitting a Letter of Interest, please email culturaltreasures@sadaoghosh.com.

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