Recent Grants 

 

photo by John Rogers, courtesy of Duke Performances

K-12 Education Program

 

Arts Education 

 

2019 Grants
BUMP: The Triangle, Durham, NC

Support for Bull City Youth Orchestra, a symphony orchestra for middle and high school students, in partnership with NCCU’s Department of Music

$10,000
Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, Durham, NC

Support for Full Frame 2019 Summer School of Doc and 2019 Youth Screening. This grant reflects the long history shared by Full Frame and the Biddle Foundation.

$10,000
Musical Empowerment, Carrboro, NC

Support to expand its music education program, in which college students are teachers and mentors to K-12 students, through a collaborative partnership with North Carolina Central University and BUMP: The Triangle

$75,000
North Carolina Arts in Action, Durham, NC

Support to bring in a master trainer for our teaching artists to enhance the quality of our programming across Chatham, Orange, Durham and Wake Counties

$10,000
The Scrap Exchange, Durham, NC

Support for the Arts and ESL Project, which will train and support ESL teachers and subsequently students who are English Language Learners in the Durham Public Schools

$10,000
TheGifted Arts, Garner, NC

Support for the GiftedSummer 2019, a multi-week arts summer camp in Garner

$10,000

 

2018 Grants
Arts Access, Raleigh, NC

Durham Arts Inclusion Project is a professional development effort that will provide inclusion training and support to arts education providers

$10,000
The Center for Documentary Studies/Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, Durham, NC

For the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival’s 2018-19 Teach the Teachers and 2018 Youth Screening programs

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
The Center for Documentary Studies/Full Frame Documentary Film Festival, Durham, NC

Pilot and establish a new School of Doc afterschool program. This grant will be paid over three years and was made by invitation.

$75,000
Community Health Coalition, Durham, NC

Koalition Kids for Health "My View of A Healthy World" Photovoice Project uses digital photography to improve students' literacy levels and critical thinking through the examination of health issues in their communities

$10,000
Kidznotes, Durham, NC

The Vivaldi Symphonic Orchestra, Kidznote's middle school orchestral curriculum, engages 5th through 8th graders in 21st century skills in the arts

$10,000
Music is Life, Raleigh, NC

Music is Life offers a music enrichment pop-up program, carefully aligned and structured with NCDPI Music Standards that encourages music literacy programming incorporated with STEM

$5,000
Puppet Show, Chapel Hill, NC

Puppet Show promotes and preserves puppetry arts through a series of community outreach programs fostering social emotional learning in young children

$5,000
United Arts Council of Raleigh and Wake County, Raleigh, NC

The Council will expand its in-service arts integration professional development program to 32 middle school teachers in two eastern Wake County schools to promote arts education standards and integrate them across the curriculum

$10,000
Voices Together, Durham, NC

Voices Together Little Voices Program uses music-based therapy as an innovative and early intervention program for pre-school students with developmental differences, and offers techniques for their parents to use at home

$5,000

 

Student Success and Learning 

 

2019 Grants
Durham Nativity School, Durham, NC

Support for the Exploratory Learning Program, which will implement digital literacy education across all subjects in order to increase students’ reading and math scores

$10,000
Student U, Durham, NC

Support for the “Voices of Student U,” a project-based education program in which students develop communication and technology skills, learn to work collaboratively, and write stories that represent themselves, their families, and their communities

$10,000
Village of Wisdom, Durham, NC

Support for “Bringing Black Genius to School,” which will create a replicable school model for improving teachers’ capacity to support the socio-emotional health and academic achievement of Black youth, in partnership with Central Park School for Children

$10,000
WAKE UP and Read, Cary, NC

Support for “Playing with Reading,” which infuses evidence-based literacy strategies into summer recreational camps that serve Wake County elementary school children and provides books and activities to promote grade-level reading and stem summer learning loss

$10,000

 

2018 Grants
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Triangle, Morrisville, NC

The STEMentor Initiative "SMART Saturday Academy" provides engaging, structured STEM classes, camps, and activities throughout the year to school-aged children in Wake, Durham, and Orange Counties

$10,000
The Center for Inquiry Based Learning, Durham, NC

Engaging Elementary Classrooms with Hands-on STEM: All kindergarten and 5th grade teachers in Durham Public Schools will receive professional development in STEM subjects and kits containing materials for nine weeks of integrated STEM instruction

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
Communities in Schools of Durham, Durham, NC

Sustainable Living & Me integrates science, history, math, and English in an agricultural and biology-focused summer enrichment program that includes a teaching garden

$10,000
Communities in Schools of Wake County, Raleigh, NC

Project CHAMPS is a pilot CIS Wake program that will provide specialized, experiential learning, preparing K-8 students for postsecondary opportunities and the 21st century workforce

$10,000
Durham’s Partnership for Children, Durham, NC

To support Durham’s Campaign for Grade-Level Reading

$5,000
East Durham Children’s Initiative, Durham, NC

Support to expand the STEAM Summer Camp and prevent summer learning loss. This grant will be paid over three years and was made by invitation.

$75,000
Hispanic Liaison of Chatham County, Siler City, NC

Orgullo Latinx Pride Youth Group is a year-round program designed to improve academic success for Latinx high school students in Chatham County

$10,000
Teachers2Teachers – International, Chapel Hill, NC

Dancing Numbers! Bringing STEM Lessons Alive Through Global Math Stories is a professional development program for teachers from three Chatham County schools to help them teach culturally relevant, globally connected STEM lessons

$10,000
The Triangle Nonprofit & Volunteer Leadership Center, Durham, NC

The Institute for Civic Engagement gives students the opportunity to develop skills and knowledge for effective civic participation and to research and create a capstone project addressing a community issue.

$10,000
Wake Education Partnership, Raleigh, NC

SummerSTEM is a professional development experience for WCPSS educators, giving teachers project-based learning tools and STEM immersion experiences that bring real-world lessons to their classrooms.

$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, encourage collaboration, 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

new Art grant guidelines will be posted on april 15, 2021

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