Challenge America Fast-Track
The Challenge America Fast-Track category offers support primarily to small and mid-sized organizations for projects that extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations -- those whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability. Age alone (e.g., youth, seniors) does not qualify a group as underserved; at least one of the underserved characteristics noted above also must be present. Grants are available for professional arts programming and for projects that emphasize the potential of the arts in community development.
This category encourages and supports the following two outcomes:
You will be asked to select the outcome that is most relevant to your project (you also will be able to select a secondary outcome). When making selections, you should identify the outcome(s) that reflect the results expected to be achieved by your project. If you receive a grant, you also will be asked to provide evidence of those results.
Challenge America Fast-Track grants:
Partnerships can be valuable to the success of these projects. While not required, applicants are encouraged to consider partnerships among organizations, both in and outside of the arts, as appropriate to their project.
To ensure that Challenge America Fast-Track funding reaches new organizations and communities, the NEA has implemented a policy to limit consecutive-year funding.
Starting with grants that were awarded in FY 2011 (as indicated by a grant letter dated on or after October 1, 2010, and a grant number beginning with "11 - 78"), an organization that receives Challenge America Fast-Track grants for three years in a row is not eligible to apply to the Fast-Track category for the following one-year period. Therefore, an organization that has received grants in FY 2011, 2012, and 2013 may not apply under these FY 2014 guidelines. That organization may apply for FY 2014 support under other Arts Endowment funding opportunities including Art Works. The organization would be able to apply to the Challenge America Fast-Track category again in FY 2015.
May 23, 2013, Application Deadline
If your organization applies to the Challenge America Fast-Track category, it may not submit another application to the Art Works category. See "Applicant Eligibility/Application Limits" for further information.
Challenge America Fast-Track Specialists: firstname.lastname@example.org or 202/682-5700
This category supports focused, distinct projects that take place over limited periods of time and involve limited geographic areas. Such projects generally are smaller in scale and shorter in duration than those in the Art Works category.
All projects must extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations that have limited access to the arts due to geography, ethnicity, economics, or disability. The involvement of professionally trained, experienced artists and arts professionals is essential.
Each applicant must present a simple, straightforward project that reflects only one of the project types below. Fast-Track grants are available only for:
Engagement: Engaging the public with diverse and excellent art.
You will be asked to address the anticipated results in your application. If you receive a grant, you will be asked to provide evidence of those results at the end of your project. You will need to describe the participants' experiences as well as provide evidence of the participant group as underserved. If the nature of the project does not allow for the documentation of participants' experiences explicitly, you may document the composition of the participant group and the number of participants and activities, and describe the activities used to engage the public with art. Before applying, please review the reporting requirements for Engagement.
Livability: The strengthening of communities through the arts.
Please note that certain types of Livability activities will require applicants to provide information in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act and/or the National Historic Preservation Act. See here for more information.
The anticipated long-term results for Livability projects are measurable community benefits, such as growth in overall levels of social and civic engagement; arts- or design-focused changes in policies, laws, and/or regulations; job and/or revenue growth for the community; or changes in in-and-out migration patterns. You will be asked to address the anticipated results in your application. If you receive a grant, you will be asked to provide evidence of those results at the end of your project. Given the nature of Livability projects, benefits are likely to emerge over time and may not be fully measureable during the period of a grant. You will need to provide evidence of progress toward achieving improved livability as appropriate to the project and documentation of ways in which the project addresses underserved communities. Reporting requirements for Livability are different from -- and more extensive than -- the reporting requirements for the other outcomes. Before applying, please review the reporting requirements for Livability.
Applicants are encouraged to contact staff if they are considering Livability as a primary outcome.
Applications are submitted to the Challenge America Fast-Track staff and are reviewed by a diverse group of arts experts and other individuals with broad knowledge of the specific types of projects in this funding area.
Applications are reviewed on the basis of artistic excellence and artistic merit. For more detailed information on how artistic excellence and artistic merit will be evaluated, see the "Review Criteria." You can find additional information in the "Application Review" section of the "Frequently Asked Questions." See the "Application Calendar" for information on when we expect to announce grant awards and rejections.
In addition to the "We Do Not Fund" section for all Grants for Arts Projects applicants, funding under the Challenge America Fast-Track category is not available for:
The Arts Endowment encourages organizations with operating budgets of less than $50,000 and organizations that have not applied for public funds previously to consider applying to local or state sources to gain practical experience with managing public funds.
CFDA No. 45.024
National Endowment for the Arts · an independent federal