Recent Grants 

 

photo by John Rogers, courtesy of Duke Performances

K-12 Education Program

2020 Grants

 

Arts Education 
El Sistema USA,  Durham, NC $5,000
Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, Durham, NC $10,000
Empower Dance Foundation, Durham, NC $11,500
Kidznotes, Durham, NC $11,500
Paperhand Puppet Intervention, Haw River, NC $11,500
Spanish Dance Arts Company, Bahama, NC $6,500

 

student success and learning  
Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Carolina, Siler City, NC $11,500
Chatham Education Foundation, Pittsboro, NC $11,500
Durham Colored Library/Techies4 Tomorrow,  Durham, NC $11,500
Helps Education Fund, Raleigh, NC $11,500
Kidznotes,  Durham, NC $11,500
Walking Classroom Institute, Chapel Hill, NC $11,500

 

2019 Grants

 

Arts Education 
BUMP: The Triangle, Durham, NC $10,000
Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, Durham, NC $10,000
Musical Empowerment, Carrboro, NC $75,000
North Carolina Arts in Action, Durham, NC $10,000
The Scrap Exchange, Durham, NC $10,000
TheGifted Arts, Garner, NC $10,000

 

Student Success and Learning 
Durham Nativity School, Durham, NC $10,000
Student U, Durham, NC $10,000
Village of Wisdom, Durham, NC $10,000
WAKE UP and Read, Cary, NC $10,000

 

2018 Grants

 

Arts Education 
Arts Access, Raleigh, NC $10,000
Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, Durham, NC $10,000
Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, Durham, NC: Support to pilot and establish a new School of Doc afterschool program. This grant will be paid over 3 years and was made by invitation. $75,000
Community Health Coalition, Durham, NC $10,000
Kidznotes, Durham, NC $10,000
Music is Life, Raleigh, NC $5,000
Puppet Show, Chapel Hill, NC $5,000
United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County, Raleigh, NC 10,000
Voices Together, Durham, NC $5,000

Student Success and Learning 

The Center for Inquiry-Based Learning, Durham, NC $10,000
Communities in Schools of Durham, Durham, NC $10,000
Communities in Schools of Wake County, Raleigh, NC $10,000
Durham's Partnership for Children, Durham, NC $5,000
East Durham Children's Initiative, Durham, NC: Support to expand the STEAM Summer Camp. This grant will be paid over 3 years and was made by invitation. $75,000
Hispanic Liaison of Chatham County, Siler City, NC $10,000
Teachers2Teachers – International, Chapel Hill, NC $10,000
The Triangle Nonprofit & Volunteer Leadership Center, Durham, NC $10,000
Wake Education Partnership, Raleigh, NC $10,000

 

Arts Program--2018 Grants

 

Preserve and Enrich the Triangle's
Cultural Life and Landscape Grants
Artspace, Raleigh NC

Increasing Artspace’s impact through an organizational assessment that will allow us to meet our community’s needs more meaningfully with mission-aligned programs and measurable results

$10,000
The Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle, Chapel Hill, NC

Building organizational capacity to support artistic expansion and underpin strong existing programs. This grant will be paid over three years and was made by invitation.

$75,000
The Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle, Chapel Hill NC

Support for the 2018-19 concert season. The Biddle Foundation does not typically make grants for season support. This grant reflects the long history shared by The Chamber Orchestra of the Triangle and the Biddle Foundation.

$10,000
Chatham County Arts Council, Pittsboro, NC

The Sustainable Small Staff model will support growing impact by hiring focused staff experts, creating scalable positions, and respecting human resources

$10,000
Choral Society of Durham, Durham, NC

Choral Society of Durham and Raleigh Boychoir will collaborate to present John Rutter's "Mass of the Children"

$10,000
Durham Art Guild, Durham, NC

The Marketing and Catalyzing Project for the Guild's Art@Work Program elevates awareness and utilization of program services and benefits by local artists and local businesses

This grant is made through an estate gift to MDBF from the Jenny Lillian Semans Koortbojian Trust.  Jenny was a granddaughter of Mary Duke Biddle.

$10,000
Pleiades Arts, Durham, NC

Organizational Strengthening and Strategic Focus Development

$5,100
The Justice Theater Project, Raleigh, NC

Renewing the Vision: Building Capacity to Sustain The Justice Theater Project's Social Justice Mission

This grant is made through an estate gift to MDBF from the Jenny Lillian Semans Koortbojian Trust.  Jenny was a granddaughter of Mary Duke Biddle.

$10,000
Triangle ArtWorks, Raleigh, NC

ArtSwell - A cooperative regional professional development program for Triangle artists and arts organizations

$10,000
VAE, Raleigh, NC

QUEER HOME(land): a community-built project to highlight the creative contributions and diversity of the queer community while exploring domesticity from the queer perspective

$10,000

 

Develop and Nurture Artistic Talent Grants
American Dance Festival, Durham NC

To commission and premiere a new, all-women trio by the acclaimed Pilobolus during the 2018 season

$10,000
American Dance Festival, Durham, NC

To commission and premiere work from a North Carolina artist during the 2019 season

$10,000
Black On Black Project, Raleigh, NC

The Jo Ann Williams Artist Fellowship offers studio space and resources to artists of color in North Carolina

$5,000
Durham Arts Council, Durham, NC

Support for the Ella Fountain Pratt Emerging Artists awards, professional development project grants to individual artists residing in Durham, Orange, Chatham, Person and Granville Counties through a competitive application process

$10,000
North Carolina Theatre, Raleigh, NC

Support for “Peace of Clay,” a new play co-written by Triangle-area playwrights Mike Wiley and Howard L. Craft. This work is part of the Reflections: Sharing our Stories collaboration between NC Theatre and Theatre Raleigh.

$10,000
ShaLeigh Dance Works, Durham, NC

Bamboo Wind will commission 20 artists in the fields of music, film, poetry, photography, sculpture, theatre, costume design, and dance for a multi-media performance installation

$10,000
Southern Documentary Fund, Durham, NC

Support for the final year of a five-year grant to fund documentaries made about North Carolina or by North Carolinians

$20,000
University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Winston-Salem, NC

Support for the UNCSA Dean’s Discretionary Fund and Creative Excellence Fund. This grant reflects the long history shared by UNCSA and the Biddle Foundation.

$60,000
University of North Carolina School of the Arts, Winston-Salem, NC

Support for the UNCSA Artpreneur of the Year award, Creative Projects. This grant will be paid over three years and was made by invitation.

 

$75,000

 

The Arts

The arts are essential to strong, vibrant communities. A dynamic cultural sector is a catalyst for growth, attracting and retaining businesses and visitors. They strengthen neighborhoods and communities by preserving the culture and memories of specific places and have a positive impact on health and well-being. The arts provide spaces to allow people from different backgrounds to engage with one another and opportunities to build community. Perhaps most importantly, they offer personal enjoyment to individuals, groups, and families, and give voice to the human condition.

The Mary Duke Biddle Foundation focuses its arts grantmaking on efforts that strengthen arts organizations and nurture artistic talent.  This program focuses on adult artists. Please see the K-12 Education grant program for guidelines for projects that engage school-aged participants.

Durham Independent Dance Artists, photo by Zoe Litaker

Arts Grant Program

The Mary Duke Biddle Foundation (MDBF) has a long-standing commitment to a diverse and thriving cultural sector in Chatham, Durham, Orange, and Wake Counties in North Carolina, one that provides meaningful artistic experiences for communities throughout the Triangle region. MDBF strikes a balance between supporting the region’s established institutions and newer and emerging organizations that reflect the full breadth of our cultures and neighborhoods.

About 57% of MDBF Arts grants go to organizations with budgets less than $300,000 and 26% go to organizations with operating budgets between $300,000-$1,000,000, while about 17% organizations with operating budgets greater than $1,000,000.  

MDBF is a strong proponent of arts education, which is funded through the K-12 Education program.

MDBF focuses its arts grantmaking on strengthening arts organizations and nurturing artistic talent. Grants support a broad range of creative disciplines and practices—music, dance, theater, visual, digital/ photography/filmmaking, literary, and audio (such as audio dramas).

 

Funding Program Goals
  • support cultural organizations that demonstrate artistic excellence and elevate the profile of the Triangle’s arts scenes, both locally and nationally;
  • support new, emerging, or grassroots cultural organizations that document, preserve, and/or present the values, spirit, and diversity of the Triangle’s cultural community; AND/OR
  • support arts-focused organizations that work directly with artists to nurture the current and next generations of artists, deepen and expand talent, develop professional and business skills, create new works.

 

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: MDBF views our arts grantmaking through an equity lens. We are particularly interested in supporting organizations led by people of color, that incorporate arts accessibility into their work, and whose boards and staff reflect the diversity of the Triangle. By accessibility, we mean opportunities to encounter, appreciate, and participate in the arts. We support organizations that embrace and advance DEI practices and work towards equitable access and engagement in the arts.

 

Grant Opportunities

Beginning in 2021, MDBF is shifting most of its grantmaking from project-based support to operating support for organizations that align with our Arts Grant Program funding goals.  MDBF offers two grant types described below that are awarded through an open and competitive grant process. There are separate and distinct eligibility and application processes for these grants.

 

Operating Support Grant

We offer a two-year grant of $10,000 each year for a total grant of $20,000. These grants will be made to organizations with which MDBF has an existing funding relationship, defined as having had at least one grant between 2011-2020. We anticipate making 10 two-year grants.

 

Eligibility for 2-year Operating Support grants

  • Grants are made to arts organizations. Arts education programs are funded under the K-12 Education grant program.
  • Applicant must have a current 501c3 status or have a fiscal sponsor.
  • The applying organization must be located in and primary programming must take place in Chatham, Durham, Orange, or Wake Counties, North Carolina.
  • Organization’s mission, goals, and programming directly relate to MDBF’s funding goals.
  • Organizations must have annual operating expenses less than $5 million (fiscal sponsors are exempt from this stipulation). Schools, units, and departments within larger organizations, such as universities, are not eligible even if their budgets are less than $5 million.
  • Organizations with smaller operating budgets are eligible. Have evidence of impact or success of primary programming/mission
  • Organizations may have only one active MDBF grant at a time.
  • Individual artists’ projects are not eligible for support. Fiscal sponsorships of individual projects are not accepted.

Evaluation criteria for 2-year Grants

  • Alignment of the organization’s arts mission and programming with MDBF’s funding program goals
  • Organization’s track record of delivering programming that aligns with funding program goals
  • Impact and benefit of programming to one or more counties in the Triangle
  • A demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion—including accessibility—in its governance, staffing/artists, audiences, and programming
  • A demonstrated commitment to collaborate with other organizations
  • Organization has the capacity to achieve their goals: staffing levels and experiences (including volunteers), board governance, and financial resources
Opportunity Grant

We offer a one-year $5,000 Opportunity Grant targeted to organizations that have never received a grant from MDBF or to those that haven't received a grant since 2010. This grant provides an opportunity for MDBF to get to know new organizations.  We anticipate making 5 one-year grants.

 

Eligibility for 1-year Opportunity Grants:

  • Grants are made to arts organizations.
  • Applicant must have a current 501c3 status or have a fiscal sponsor.
  • The applying organization must be located in and primary programming must take place in Chatham, Durham, Orange, or Wake Counties, North Carolina.
  • Organization’s mission, goals, and programming directly relate to MDBF’s funding goals.
  • These grants will be made to organizations that have never received a grant from MDBF or have not received a grant in the previous 10 years.
  • Preference given to organizations with operating budgets under $300,000.
  • Organizations must have annual operating expenses under $1 million (fiscal sponsors are exempt from this stipulation).
  • MDBF has a history of supporting start-up nonprofits and those that are relatively early in their life cycles. They are eligible to apply.
  • Individual artists’ projects are not eligible for support. Fiscal sponsorships of individual projects are not accepted.

Evaluation criteria for 1-year Grants

  • Alignment of the organization’s arts mission and programming with MDBF’s funding program goals
  • Impact and benefit of programming to one or more counties in the Triangle
  • A demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion—including accessibility—in its governance, staffing/artists, audiences, and programming
  • Organization’s capacity to achieve their goals: staffing levels and experiences (including volunteers), board governance, and financial resources

K-12 Education

The Mary Duke Biddle Foundation has a longstanding commitment to youth education. We focus this grantmaking on two areas: Student Success and Learning  and Arts education. In both areas, the foundation makes grants to help children, especially those in underserved communities, acquire the knowledge, skills, and behaviors they need to succeed in school, career pathways, and life.

We make grants to organizations located in and serving students in Chatham, Durham, Orange, and Wake Counties in North Carolina.

North Carolina Arts in Action, photo by MaryBeth Carpenter

K-12 Education Program

The Mary Duke Biddle Foundation has a longstanding commitment to youth education. We focus grantmaking in two areas: Student Success and Learning and Arts Education.

MDBF advocates for a high quality, forward-looking educational experience for all children, with a particular interest in organizations working with underserved K-12 students to provide innovative, creative, and effective approaches to teaching and learning.

Participating in the arts confers numerous benefits, from providing captivation and pleasure, to providing a vehicle for self-expression, to promoting cognitive growth and the capacity for empathy. Arts education nurtures creative thinking, collaboration, and other competencies.

We support organizations that help children in underserved communities acquire the knowledge, skills, and support they need to succeed in school, careers, and life. For the purpose of our grants, underserved students are those who lack access to programs, opportunities, or support because of economic conditions, race or ethnic background, geography, or differing abilities. We make grants to organizations located in and serving students in Chatham, Durham, Orange, and Wake Counties in North Carolina.

 

Funding Goals

 

Student Success and Learning: Provide and promote learning environments that equip underserved students to succeed in college or career. Support for organizations that strengthen and support academic achievement, work to close the academic opportunity gap, prepare students for careers and college, and/or build a foundation of confidence and creativity to foster growth and success. Organizations that provide professional development for teachers are eligible.

 

Arts Education: Provide opportunities for underserved students to engage directly in high-quality arts programs. Support for organizations that seek to strengthen in-school and out-of-school arts instruction, particularly that in which students actively participate in making art. We encourage opportunities that include culturally-affirming arts. Organizations that provide professional development for teachers and teaching artists are eligible.

 

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

We view our education grantmaking through an equity lens. We are particularly interested in supporting organizations led by people of color and whose boards and staff reflect the population(s) served by the organization.

 

Grant Opportunities

Beginning in 2021, MDBF is shifting most of its grantmaking from project-based support to operating support for organizations that align with our K-12 Education funding goals, below.  MDBF offers two grant types, awarded through an open and competitive grant process.

 

Operating Support Grants: We offer a two-year grant of $10,000 each year for a total of $20,000. These grants are primarily focused on organizations with which MDBF has an existing funding relationship. However, it is possible for an organization that hasn't received funding to receive this grant.

 

Opportunity Grant: We offer a one-year $5,000 Opportunity Grant targeted primarily to organizations that have never received a grant from MDBF or haven't received a grant in the past 10 years. Preference is given to smaller organizations with operating budgets under $300,000.

This grant provides an opportunity for MDBF to get to know new organizations.

The application process is the same for both opportunities.

We anticipate making 10 two-year grants and 5 one-year grants.

 

Preview the K-12 Education Program application form here.

 

Institutional Eligibility

 

Eligibility for 2-year Operating Support grants:
  • Applicant must have a current 501c3 status or have a fiscal sponsor.
  • The applying organization must be located in and primary programming must take place in Chatham, Durham, Orange, or Wake Counties, North Carolina.
  • Organization’s mission, goals, and programming are directly related to the MDBF’s funding goals.
  • Organizations must have annual operating expenses under $5 million (fiscal sponsors are exempt from this stipulation). Schools, units, and departments within larger organizations, such as universities, are not eligible even if their budget is under $5 million.
  • Have evidence of efficacy of primary programming/mission
  • Demonstrated success and measurable patterns of student achievement or success in the programs operating by the organization. Organizations unable to show proven past results are less likely to receive a grant.
  • Preference given to organizations with which MDBF has an existing funding relationship. However, it is possible for an organization that hasn't received funding to receive this grant.
  • Public schools and charter schools are not eligible to apply.
  • Organizations may have only one active MDBF grant at a time.
  • Public schools and charter schools are not eligible to apply.
  • Public school foundations are eligible to apply.

 

Eligibility for 1-year Opportunity Grants:
  • Applicant must have a current 501c3 status or have a fiscal sponsor.
  • The applying organization must be located in and primary programming must take place in Chatham, Durham, Orange, or Wake Counties, North Carolina.
  • Preference given to organizations that have never received a grant from MDBF or have not received a grant in the previous 10 years.
  • Preference given to smaller organizations with operating budgets under $300,000.
  • Organizations must have annual operating expenses under $5 million (fiscal sponsors are exempt from this stipulation). Schools, units, and departments within larger organizations, such as universities, are not eligible even if their budget is under $5 million.
  • Organization’s mission, goals, and programming are directly related to the MDBF’s funding goals.
  • Organizations may have only one active MDBF grant at a time.
  • Public schools and charter schools are not eligible to apply.
  • Public school foundations are eligible to apply.

 

Evaluation Criteria

In reviewing grant proposals, MDBF will use the following evaluation criteria:

  • Alignment of the organization’s education programming with MDBF’s funding program goals
  • Efficacy and impact of the organization’s programming
  • For Operating Support Grants, the organization’s track record of delivering effective programming that aligns with the MDBF funding program’s goals
  • A demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in its governance, staffing, and work, reflecting the population(s) served by the organization
  • Organization’s financial stability, including support from other areas of the community.
  • Organization has the capacity to achieve their goals: staffing (including volunteers), board governance, and financial resources