Arts Impact Endowment (AIE) Grant - Arts Hub

FOR PROJECTS TAKING PLACE JANUARY 1, 2021 — december 31, 2023

For any questions about Special Project Grants, please contact Deputy Director of Programs Joanne Lee at or 415-252-2238.


A translation of this grant application is available upon request; however, only applications in English will be accepted.

Una traducción de esta solicitud de aplicación está disponible a petición; sin embargo, solamente se aceptarán solicitudes en inglés. Favor comunicarse con Lorena Moreno al 415-252-2211 ó para una traducción al español.


Ang pagsasalin sa Tagalog ng aplikasyon para sa pagkalooban na ito ay makukuha kung hihingilin. Ngunit ang aplikasyon sa Ingles lamang ang aming tatanggapin. Para sa tulong, maaring i-contact si Sandra Panopio, 415-252-2217 o



Jump to:
Important Dates
Information about Arts Impact Endowment Grants
Who Can Apply
Panel Evaluation & Scoring Criteria

Important Dates

Grantseeker Webinar October 16, 2020 at 1 p.m. PST
One-on-One consultations October 2 – October 30, 2020
Applications Due October 30, 2020 at 12 p.m. PST
Panel Review November 2020
Funding Recommendations November 2020
Commission Approval December 2020
Grant Period January 1, 2021 – December 31, 2023
Interim Reports Due February 1, 2022; February 1, 2023
Final Report Due  February 1, 2024

About the Arts Impact Endowment (AIE) Grant - Arts Hub

The vitality and vibrancy of San Francisco depends on the dedication and determination of its arts and cultural communities. These communities and their representatives worked to support the passage of Proposition E in November 2018. With 75 percent voter approval, Proposition E restored the historic hotel tax allocation for the arts, and stabilized funding for continued deep support for arts and culture throughout the City.   
Proposition E established the Arts Impact Endowment, which is jointly administered by the San Francisco Arts Commission (SFAC) and Grants for the Arts (GFTA). This funding provides new resources for community-driven priorities. Proposition E charged the SFAC and GFTA with a community engagement process to inform the creation of a Cultural Service Allocation Plan (CSAP) and distribution of funds from the Arts Impact Endowment. This process and plan ensures that the finding is responsive to community needs and reflects equity principles.  
The 2019-2024 CSAP outlined four priority areas that the Arts Impact Endowment will support through the year 2024: 1) Arts Education (40%); 2) Affordable Space (30%); 3) Arts Organizations Core Support (20%); and 4) Individual Artists Support (10%). These priority funding areas were determined after citywide community engagement through targeted mapping activities of key stakeholders and an online poll. 
The impacts of COVID-19 are particularly poignant for San Francisco’s arts and cultural communities. Based on community feedback and recommendations from the Economic Recovery Task Force, and respecting the four priority funding areas of the 2019-2024 CSAP, SFAC and GFTA have re-purposed the Arts Impact Endowment to support the recovery of arts and culture nonprofits. 
This Arts Impact Endowment Request for Proposals (RFP) is the first of multiple conduits by which the SFAC and GFTA will resource nonprofit organizations for COVID-19 recovery with a priority for funding the communities described below.
For questions about this grant category, please contact Deputy Director of Programs Joanne Lee at or 415-252-2238.

Racial equity statement

The San Francisco Arts Commission (SFAC) is committed to creating a city where all artists and cultural workers have the freedom, resources and platform to share their stories, art and culture and where race does not predetermine one’s success in life. We also acknowledge that we occupy traditional and unceded Ohlone land. Fueled by these beliefs, we commit to addressing the systemic inequities within our agency, the City and County of San Francisco and the broader arts and culture sector. This work requires that we focus on race as we confront inequities of the past, reveal inequities of the present and develop effective strategies to move all of us towards an equitable future.

Priority funding goes to organizations deeply rooted in and reflective of communities listed in the Cultural Equity Endowment Legislation and the Grantmakers in the Arts’ “Racial Equity: Statement of Purpose,” these communities include: African and African American; Latinx; Asian and Asian American; Arab; Native American; Pacific Islander; Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Queer; Transgender and Gender Variant People; People with Disabilities; and Women. (SF ADMIN. CODE CHAPTER 68: CULTURAL EQUITY ENDOWMENT FUND. Sec. 68.6. PROJECT GRANTS). 

Please note: We recognize that some communities may not be listed here and encourage applicants to articulate and provide supporting evidence about the historical and current inequities for any community not named above. Specific artistic disciplines are not part of this funding priority.


Up to $250,000. Grant amounts may differ from the request amount due to the level of funding available to the program, demand for that funding, and/or the rank an application receives from the review panel.

How to Apply


project description

Arts Hub: Support up to $250,000 for a nonprofit arts and culture service provider to develop, host, maintain, and regularly update a web-based perennial listing of current funding, grants, resources, and exhibition opportunities in San Francisco, as well as online tools, training, and educational materials relevant to the arts sector. The Arts Hub, modeled after similar, longstanding arts sector online resources such as and, will provide a comprehensive and dynamic city-wide information resource and clearinghouse for artists, arts organizations, businesses in the arts industry, art and arts service consumers, and arts funders and supporters.   

The Arts Hub is a unique opportunity to strengthen the arts and culture sector by:

  • Providing an accessible, centralized online resource center of funding, employment, and exhibition opportunities as well as tools and educational materials to support the arts and cultural communities within San Francisco, especially those deeply rooted in the BIPOC and LGBTQ communities. 
  • Empowering individual artists, creatives, the artistic and creative industries, businesses, and organizations in all artistic disciplines as well as consumers of the arts by providing resource information, job and arts exhibition opportunities/calls for work, arts services and providers, and more.   
  • Engaging the arts community through tools, trainings, and educational materials to prioritize strategies that expand the arts and cultural communities’ abilities and capacities to present work and grow audiences given the restrictive limitations of COVID-19.  
  • Providing information and guidance on how to be sustainable and survive as an arts organization or artist in the time of COVID-19 and beyond.  

Grant period: January 1, 2021 through December 31, 2023. It is anticipated that successful proposals will be for a term of three years beginning January 1, 2021 with a possible extension for up to one additional year based on extenuating circumstances as determined by the Arts Commission in consultation with the grantee. Any extension is subject to Arts Commission approval and funding appropriation. Arts Commission reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to not exercise an extension option.

Applicants should address their experience, skills and abilities to implement the following:

  • Website design, creation, and maintenance  
  • Marketing materials  
  • E-newsletter  
  • Participation, engagement and outreach to a local network of community arts and culture nonprofits, businesses, and artists and cultural workers, especially in the priority funding communities
  • Strengthening of existing networks to engage, support, and intersect with San Francisco’s arts and cultural communities 

Who Can Apply


  • The applicant organization must have a track record of providing reputable and equitable arts-related technical assistance and capacity building programming in San Francisco for at least three (3) years prior to this application. 
  • The applicant organization must be tax-exempt under Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3).
  • The applicant organization must provide proof of maintaining a corporate address in the City and County of San Francisco for at least three full years at the time of application (since December 2017).
  • The applicant organization cannot be part of another City agency or department.
  • Applicants must provide a three (3) year budget (2021 – 2023).
  • Applicants must provide a three (3) year grant plan (2021-2023) with three (3) activities per year and the intended outputs the applicant hopes to achieve.  
  • Applicants must not be in default on any grants or loans from: (1) SFAC; (2) other City departments (including, without limitation, the Department of Children Youth and Their Families, Office of Economic and Workforce Development, Mayor’s Office of Housing and Community Development and Grants for the Arts); (3) Northern California Grantmakers Arts Loan Fund; (4) Community Vision Capital and Consulting; (5) Community Arts Stabilization Trust; and/or (6) the Center for Cultural Innovation. This default clause was expanded due to the fact that SFAC has fiduciary relationships with these particular organizations.
  • The organization must be willing and able to meet the requirements associated with receiving funds from the City and County of San Francisco. In order to receive a grant payment from the San Francisco Arts Commission, you must become a registered, compliant supplier and meet the City of San Francisco's insurance and business tax requirements. For more information about supplier requirements, visit: 

    Please note: you will only be required to register as a City Supplier if you are awarded a grant. Insurance and business tax requirements will be explained and made available upon approval of grant awards.

​ineligible expenses

Grant funds may not pay for: 
  1. Activities outside of San Francisco;

  2. Deficit reduction;

  3. Start-up money for new organizations.

grantee and insurance requirements

  • City Permits and Permissions: If the proposal includes components that require City permits or approval such as publicly installed art, street closures, sound amplification in public space, or murals, the artist will be solely responsible for securing the necessary permits, permissions, insurance and approvals. This planning should be reflected in your project timeline.
  • Insurance Requirements:
    General Liability:
    • To authorize any grant payment, insurance must cover the entire grant period (January 1, 2020 through June 30, 2025). Awarded grantees will need to submit a certificate of General Liability Insurance and the Endorsement Page with the first and final invoices. General liability insurance cannot be waived.
  • Workers Comp Insurance: Workers Comp insurance is required for an organization that has employees.
  • Abuse and Molestation Insurance: Abuse & Molestation Insurance must be purchased and added to the General Liability policy if the project involves working with vulnerable populations (youth under the age of 18, people with disabilities, or people over the age of 65).
  • Auto Insurance: Auto Insurance is required if use of a vehicle is necessary to fulfill the project.
  • Waiver of Subrogation addendum is required for projects on ANY City-owned property.

Panel Evaluation & Scoring Criteria

Panelists are instructed to use the following scoring criteria which correspond to the application questions below. Close review of this grid may help you focus your application responses. Please thoroughly review the application instructions for the complete overview of the Arts Hub Grant application questions and guidance.





San Francisco- based Communities

(20 points)


Please describe your experience providing online services for San Francisco based communities.

What is your demonstrated experience reaching BIPOC and LGBTQ communities?

Applicant shows demonstrated experience serving San Francisco communities.

Applicant has demonstrated experience reaching BIPOC and LGBTQ communities.

Managing Online Resources

(40 points)


Describe your experience contracting and managing skilled web developers to design service based websites.

Describe your experience with managing and maintaining an online resource.

Applicant has experience working with skilled website developers to deliver service based websites.

Applicant demonstrates success managing and maintaining an online resource.


Arts Sector

(20 points)


Tell us your experience serving the arts sector including creatives, creative industries, businesses, organizations and artistic disciplines.

How have you provided resources, jobs, arts exhibition opportunities, artists calls or art services? 

Applicant has demonstrated experience with a wide swath of the arts and culture sector.

Applicant has experience providing resources and information on jobs, art exhibitions, artists call and/or other art services.   

Sector Growth
(10 points)


What tools does your organization have experience with to support investment and growth in the arts and culture sector community during COVID and beyond?

Applicant has a detailed plan and experience with tools for investment and growth in the arts and culture sector during COVID and beyond.

Sector Support

(10 points)

10 How do you plan to provide information and guidance on arts and culture sector sustainability during COVID and beyond? Applicant has a detailed plan to help the arts and culture sector be sustainable during COVID and beyond.


Application Review

Grantees will be selected by a review process comprised of representatives from the San Francisco Arts Commission, San Francisco Grants for the Arts, and/or other City department staff and funding partners. Panelists will review applications and make funding recommendations. 

Panel Review Attendance and influence

AIE panels are not open to the public. Please note an applicant that is found to have made attempts to influence a panelist in any way will be automatically disqualified.

Funding Recommendations

Based on an evaluation of the applications, panelist scores create a ranking for funding recommendations. Funding recommendations are determined within each grant category.

Funding Approval

Panel recommendations are subject to the approval of the Arts Commission. Typically, recommendations are first reviewed by the Community Investments Committee and then by the full Commission.  

Grant amounts may differ from the request amount due to the level of funding available to the program, demand for that funding, and/or the rank an application receives from the peer review panel.

Arts Commission meetings are open to the public. Agendas are available at 72 hours in advance of a meeting.


Grant notifications are emailed to the address listed on the application and include instructions about the contracting process and orientation dates.


Panelists may take notes during their review. You may contact to request panel comments. Requests are fulfilled in the order they are received.

What's Coming Up

Public Meeting

Executive Committee Meeting

December 18
1:00 PM to 2:30 PM

Hybrid: 401 Van Ness | Rm 125 and Online
Public Meeting

Visual Arts Committee Meeting

December 16
2:00 PM to 6:00 PM

Hybrid: City Hall | Rm 408 and Online
Public Meeting

Civic Design Review Committee Meeting

December 11
2:00 PM to 4:00 PM

Hybrid: City Hall | Rm 408 and Online
Public Meeting

Community Investments Committee Meeting

December 09
1:00 PM to 3:00 PM

Hybrid: City Hall | Rm 416 and Online