Grants for Organizations

Build Up Grant Opportunity

Capacity Building, Sustainability Building, and Inclusivity Building in the Arts in Wilson County

Important Dates
Performance Period: July 1, 2023 – May 30, 2024
Subgrant Report Due: June 9, 2024

Wilson Arts’ Build Up Grant Opportunity was made possible with funding from the North Carolina Arts Council.  North Carolina legislature has designated $10 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to be distributed through the North Carolina Arts Council’s designated county partner network over two years.  No match is required; however, this funding may not be used to match other grants awarded from the North Carolina Arts Council or other federal grants.  The total amount available to award to organizations is $13,470.

This funding opportunity is for:

  • BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) organizations with arts programming to build capacity and sustainability.
  • Organizations that wish to strengthen their relationships with BIPOC artists and communities.

BIPOC arts organizations are defined as organizations with more than 50% of Board members being BIPOC or having mission statements that have a focus on serving BIPOC communities. The term BIPOC stands for Black Indigenous, People of Color.  This acronym is considered an umbrella term for African Americans, Black people, Indigenous people, Native American people, native Alaskans, Middle Eastern people, Asian Americans, Pacific Islander people, Latinx people, and other racial groups that are nonwhite people that experience systemic oppression.  Multicultural programming is defined as hiring BIPOC artists to implement the program.  The term “multicultural” is not defined as the audience participating in the program or the theme of the program.  Arts organizations are defined as organizations that may or may not have a direct focus on art but utilize the arts to achieve their mission.

2022-2023 Recipients

Casa Azul de Wilson - $4,216 to help support general operations and salaries

  • Eyes on Main Street - $1,000 to aid the organization in bringing photographer Rodrigo Paredes to Wilson
  • Preservation of Wilson - $2,500 to help host "We Built This: Profiles of Black Architects and Builders" exhibition at the Oliver Nestus Freeman Roundhouse Museum
  • R.O.C.K. Foundation - $1,800 to help purchase materials for hands-on experience for students to learn preservation skills
  • Sallie B. Howard School for the Arts - $500 to help purchase equipment for supporting growing arts programs
  • Vision Community Theatre Group, Inc. - $500 to help the organization towards purchasing needed sound equipment
  • Vollis Simpson Whirligig Park - $1,500 to hire professional Funk, Jazz, R&B musicians to play at the park for ArtSpin ~ A Downtown Arts Experience

2023-2024 Recipients

  • Eyes on Main Street - $3,368 for funding to help hire Rodrigo Paredes to run photography programs
  • The Spot - $6,735 to help hire a BIPOC artist to teach after school programs
  • Wilson Family YMCA - $3,367 to help the organization compensate local artists providing arts instruction to Y-GIG students.


Grassroots Arts Project Grants are made possible by the North Carolina Arts Council and dispersed to each county by their local arts council. Non-profit organizations who implement arts projects in Wilson County may apply for the Grassroots Arts Project Grant.

Since 1977, the North Carolina Arts Council’s Grassroots Arts Program has provided North Carolina citizens access to quality arts experiences. The program distributes funds for the arts in all 100 counties of the state primarily through partnerships with local arts councils. Wilson Arts serves as the North Carolina Arts Council’s partner in awarding subgrants to local organizations for arts programs in Wilson County.

Eligibility for Application

  • All organizations must have been in operation for at least one year, and must be a 501(c)3 non profit organization.
  • All organizations must reside and carry out projects within Wilson County.
  • Individuals are not eligible to apply for Grassroots Arts funds.
  • Application and support materials must be complete and received by the due date.

Application Submission & Deadline

The deadline for this opportunity has now passed.
All 2023 projects must take place between July 1, 2023 and May 30, 2024. Grant amounts range from $500 to $4000. (Recommended, but not required.)

What the Grassroots Arts Program Funds

Grassroots Arts Program funds may be used for expenditures to conduct quality arts programs, or operate an arts organization. Typical uses of Grassroots money include:

  • Program expenses such as artists’ fees and travel, space rental, advertising, marketing and publicity, Web site and electronic media, scripts, costumes, sets, props, music and equipment rental or purchase
  • Operating expenses such as salaries, telephone, office supplies, printing, postage, rent, utilities, insurance and equipment rental or purchase are sometimes funded, but is a secondary funding request.

North Carolina Arts Council Recognition

Subgrantees must acknowledge the North Carolina Arts Council’s support of their event or projects by including the North Carolina Arts Council’s logo, and funding credit line in all print and promotional materials related to the grant. The North Carolina Arts Council’s website offers information and downloadable logos at

Reporting Requirements

Each subgrantee is required to submit a final report providing a detailed description of the funded project, participation statistics and demographics, sample marketing and program materials using the North Carolina Arts Council credit line and logo, and copies of their legislative letters. The Subgrant Report form can be downloaded from the North Carolina Arts Council website at Final reports must be mailed or hand delivered to the Wilson Arts Center, 204 Nash Street S, Wilson, NC 27893 by June 9, 2024.

Questions and Assistance

If applicants have questions or need assistance, please contact Cathy Hardison at (252) 291-4329 or




The Cultural Organization Recovery Grant Program through the National Endowment for the Arts' American Rescue Plan provided financial assistance and economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic to members of Wilson County's arts and cultural community.

Wilson Arts competitively awarded recovery funds to the eligible arts and cultural providers above.  These funds helped support jobs in the arts sector, keep the doors open to arts organizations, and assist in the sector's response to and recovery from the COVID-19 crisis. Organizations with a focus on assisting underserved communities and cultural organizations that are limited by ethnicity, economics, geography or disability with a lens on equity, inclusion and fairness were given weighted priority in the granting process. Projects were carried out between July 1, 2022 and May 30, 2023.