Capacity Grants

Capacity Grants

Capacity Grants are multi-year, matching grants for organizations that are expanding their staff and operations, based on a strategic plan for growth. Requests may be made to execute selected portions of an organization’s strategic plan or other long-term effort to expand and strengthen the organization’s resources. Funding in this category may support new, non-program staff positions and consultancies; components of new fundraising, marketing, and/or earned income initiatives; and capital projects.

In addition to eligibility requirements and restrictions, organizations must also observe the following criteria:

Size of Grant Multi-year grants will range up to $750,000. Grant requests may be no more than 50% of the organization’s overall budget.
Length of Grant Three years.
Matching Requirement One-to-one (e.g., a request for a $300,000 grant will need to have a total project budget of at least $600,000). No in-kind expenses or in-kind matching funds are allowed.
Minimum Annual Operating Budget $100,000.
Application Deadline LOIs are considered on a rolling basis, but the project start date should be  approximately one year away.
Filing and Financial Requirements Organizations must be tax-exempt under IRS Code section 501(c)(3). Applicants will be required to submit the last three years of audited or reviewed  financial statements (based on NYS requirements) and the last three years of IRS 990 Forms.
Staffing Requirements Organizations must have at least one full-time staff member.
Board Requirements Organizations must have an active, functioning Board of Directors. Organizations will be required to have a 100% board giving rate over the course of a UMEZ grant.
Programming Requirements Organizations must have at least three years of cultural programming in Upper Manhattan.
Fund Disbursement Funds are disbursed in installments based on project expenses. 10% of the total funding amount is withheld as a reimbursement pending the final project report.

















UMEZ does not provide funds for an organization’s ongoing general operations. To learn more about how this works with this type of grant, click here.

Applicants to this category must be able to devote significant staff time to grant management. The following is an approximate timeline for receiving a Capacity Grant: