$81,000 In Organizational Investment Grants Awarded To 9 Cambridge Nonprofits

3/25/20242 months ago

$81,000 In Organizational Investment Grants Awarded To 9 Cambridge Nonprofits. Pictured clockwise from top left: Maria Baldwin Community & Maud Morgan Arts, The Loop Lab, and Cambridge Community Art Center.

Pictured clockwise from top left: Maria Baldwin Community & Maud Morgan Arts, The Loop Lab, and Cambridge Community Art Center.

Nine Cambridge cultural organizations have been awarded $81,000 in Organizational Investment Grants by Cambridge Arts and the City of Cambridge. The nonprofits are community art centers, associations and performance venues. They offer teaching and professional development, live music and dance, and broadcast cultural programming to diverse audiences. The funding program provides $9,000 grants to each nonprofit to support operational costs, sustainability, and resiliency for local cultural organizations that benefit Cambridge residents.

This year’s recipients are:
• Cambridge Art Association
• Cambridge Community Art Center
• Cambridge Community Television
• Club Passim
• The Dance Complex
• Dunamis
• Global Arts Live
• The Loop Lab
• Maria Baldwin Community & Maud Morgan Arts
(Full organization descriptions see below.)

This is the fourth year Cambridge Arts has awarded Organizational Investment Grants, which began as part of Cambridge Arts’ covid relief efforts. Rather than funding individual cultural projects, like most Cambridge Arts grants, our Organizational Investment Grants offer our largest financial grants to local organizations to support their ongoing, overall good work. Creating this category just for organizations also helps individual artists by creating more funding opportunities for them in our other grant categories—because of less competition there with substantial organizations.

Overall Cambridge Arts and the City are distributing grants totaling $260,961 to 53 artists and cultural organizations this year through three funding opportunities that Cambridge Arts offered last fall—including Art for Social Justice Grants, Local Cultural Council Grants, and Organizational Investment Grants.

Each year, the City of Cambridge contributes substantial funding to support local artists, cultural workers, and arts organizations through the Cambridge Arts Grant Program. This support is coupled with funding received through the Massachusetts Cultural Council’s statewide Local Cultural Council Program.

Cambridge Arts’ Organizational Investment Grants are awarded on an annual cycle, with the due date to apply usually in mid-October of each year.

$81,000 In Organizational Investment Grants Awarded To 9 Cambridge Nonprofits

2024 Cambridge Arts Organizational Investment Grant Winners:

Cambridge Art Association
Grant Award: $9,000
Since 1944, the Cambridge Art Association has served as a community hub and career catalyst for visual artists in the Greater Boston Area. Our mission - to build a vibrant community through visual art: connecting individuals and facilitating dialogue among artists and art lovers of all ages and backgrounds. Cambridge Art Association, (CAA), hosts acclaimed exhibits of regional and national artists in three galleries across Cambridge: the Kathryn Schultz Gallery, CAA @ University Place Gallery in West Cambridge, and CAA @ Canal in Kendall Square. We present educational programs for practicing artists, host talks open to arts appreciators, and maintain a corporate art program connecting artists with businesses of all sizes. CAA is, above all, a community open to all. The Community Art Center’s (CAC's) mission is to cultivate an engaged community of youth whose powerful artistic voices transform their lives, neighborhoods, and worlds. The Art Center believes in the power of young people, of artistic expression, of taking care of oneself and of one another, and of creating positive change in its home neighborhood and beyond.

Cambridge Community Art Center
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Art Center is a mutual aid organization founded by a group of parents in 1937 in Cambridge's Port neighborhood to provide comprehensive human services to their fellow public housing residents, with a focus on the arts and holistic youth development. The Art Center offers childcare and summer camps, junior leadership groups, intermediate arts classes, and Teen Programs for youth ages 5-19. At least 60% of registrations is reserved for low-income families, and most families access the organization's programming for free or at steep discounts. The Art Center’s collective impact Port ARISE Institute is a collective impact family stabilization program that supports a cohort of 15 families in navigating federal, state, and local applications for emergency assistance.

Cambridge Community Television
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Cambridge Community Television nurtures a strong, equitable and diverse community by providing tools and training to foster free speech, civic engagement, and creative expression while connecting people to collaboratively produce media that is responsive, relevant, and effective in a fast-changing technological environment.

For 35 years we have made high-end technology and training available to anyone who wants to tell their story. CCTV operates Three local cable channels, 8, 9 & 96, featuring programming produced by Cambridge residents, including youth and elders. We are committed to radical access, examining barriers to membership, and providing open access to technology and education that supports creativity. Radical Access is getting out into the community (like our pop ups) and creative collaboration across municipalities and programs. It’s language justice and intergenerational exchange. We are also a core hub for the Arts & Culture community in Cambridge as a driver of the CREATE Cambridge initiative and a host and platform for music, visual arts, dance, comedy, and theater arts.

Club Passim
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The mission of Passim is to provide truly exceptional and interactive live musical experiences for both performers and audiences, to nurture artists at all stages of their career, and to build a vibrant, inclusive music community. We do so through our legendary listening venue, music school, artist grants and outreach programs. As a nonprofit since 1994, Passim carries on the heritage of our predecessors Club 47 (1958-1968), and for-profit Passim (1969-1994). Located in Harvard Square, Passim serves Cambridge and New England by featuring local, national and international artists at all levels of their musical career. We cultivate a diverse range of musical traditions, where the emphasis is on the relationship between performers and audience and teachers and students. Our ultimate goal is to help the performance arts flourish and thereby enrich the lives of members of our community, and beyond.

Passim has five main programs that allow us to achieve our mission of providing exceptional live music experiences and building a vibrant, inclusive music community: Club Passim, the Passim School of Music, the Folk Collective, Grants and Community Festivals and Series.

The Dance Complex
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Dance Complex enables the creation, study, and performance of dance. We sustain artists, audiences, and community through programs that connect and celebrate the wonder and curiosity for movement/dance. We embrace the widest definition of movement: we include the heritage dances from around the world: dances from Africa, the Middle East, South America, and diaspora nations' evolution, live at The DC side by side with new dances made today. These new dances are inspired by the true diversity of age, race, social and economic background of those who study, teach, and perform here, and we embrace the widest definition of dancer: dancing at all levels and for all intents opens our circle to all. We see the stories of these individuals and communities as the source of new dances of inherent communicative power as impactful tools of human empathy.

Grant Award: $9,000.00
Dunamis first began to gestate in 2013 as an academic project from founder J. Cottle while he was in graduate school as a response to the lack of job preparedness, he had experienced in all his arts training. Today, Dunamis is a Boston-based nonprofit serving the entire Greater Boston area whose mission is to ignite agency and transformative growth for emerging artists and arts-managers of color by serving as a nexus for professional development, community-building, consultation, production, advocacy and developing equitable pipelines for access and leadership in creative spaces. We give folx the support they need to grow into greater and more complete versions of themselves.

Dunamis does everything we can to support and create space for creatives of color. Our work extends into ongoing internal programming including our Emerging Artist Fellowship, Arts Management Apprenticeship, Young Artist Mixer Series, The Allison Wade Masterclass Series, Artists Anonymous and JP Porchfest. We were recently contracted by The City of Cambridge to provide six professional development trainings for Cambridge's emerging artists. Additionally, we serve on the steering committee for Create the Vote, a MA bipartisan initiative advocating for the arts in local politics.

Global Arts Live
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Global Arts Live was founded in 1990 by Maure Aronson under the name World Music. As a recent immigrant from South Africa who missed the music of his home country, Aronson wanted to bring international music to the local Boston community. He assembled a board of directors, raised a small amount of money, presented three concerts with South African artists, and grew the organization to what it is today.

In 2019, we recognized a need for a powerful new brand that better represented our wide array of programming, so we changed our name to Global Arts Live. This new brand puts the spotlight on what we value most, the transformative power of live performance to enrich lives, and better reflects our place in today’s globalized world.

The Loop Lab
Grant Award: $9,000.00
The Loop Lab is a BIPOC-led nonprofit social enterprise specializing in media arts fellowships and digital storytelling. Cambridge-based, our mission is to empower Womxn and People of Color in the media arts to develop careers in audio/video through job training and job placement. We were founded in 2017 when Chris Hope, desperate to create positive change for young people of color, surveyed young adults in the Port Neighborhood about what kinds of opportunities they wanted to see available. Two answers consistently came up: creativity, and economic opportunities. In response, Artplace America and local foundations empowered Chris to create The Loop Lab.

Now a leading nonprofit dedicated to providing media arts opportunities for young people of color, in 2021 we were selected by the Social Innovation Forum as one of six nonprofits for their Social Innovator cohort. In 2021, we were also selected as one of 15 organizations for Powering Cultural Futures, a Barr Foundation multi-year initiative to establish a more just and inclusive arts sector in Massachusetts. Through this initiative, we partner with socially conscious organizations to increase access to arts and cultural expression of BIPOC communities.

Maria Baldwin Community & Maud Morgan Arts
Grant Award: $9,000.00
Maud Morgan Arts sprang from the vision of two forward-looking women, Wendy Prellwitz and Terry DeLancey, in 1992. They recognized the need for an art center in Cambridge for children, families, and professional artists. The 19th century carriage house standing behind the (formerly known as) Agassiz Baldwin Community with its expansive yard and overarching trees became this opportunity. The proposed art center was named in honor of Maud Morgan, a neighborhood resident and noted artist. Maud Morgan was an artist of great talent and vitality who gave generously to younger generations and her community. Her spirit continues to guide the art center. In 1999 the city of Cambridge issued a zoning permit to ABC to operate an arts center at 20 Sacramento Street. The capital campaign was launched and eventually raised $1.2M of the $1.4M goal. Contributions came from foundations, institutions, families, community leaders, neighbors, artists, and friends of Maud Morgan. An unanticipated legal challenge delayed construction until the fall of 2010. At that point, the capital campaign reached its goal, the permit to build was issued, and construction began. In 2010 Maud Morgan Arts opened its doors and students of all ages enrolled in classes and workshops. Programs have continued to evolve, and the pandemic challenged us deeply, but also provided us with opportunities to adjust our program structures to better meet the needs of the community.