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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Mass Cultural Council?
The Mass Cultural Council is a state agency committed to building a central place for the arts, sciences and humanities in the everyday lives of communities across the Commonwealth. The Council pursues this mission through a combination of grant programs, partnerships, and services for nonprofit cultural organizations, schools, communities, and individual artists.

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Where does Mass Cultural Council get its budget?
Mass Cultural Council receives an annual appropriation from the state Legislature and funds from the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information on the state budget process, join the Mass Cultural Council email list.

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Is Mass Cultural Council part of Massachusetts state government?
Yes, Mass Cultural Council is an agency of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Mass Cultural Council receives an annual appropriation from the Legislature and is governed by an appointed Board of Directors.

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Who receives Mass Cultural Council grants?
The Council supports Massachusetts artists, organizations, schools, and communities through its eight major grant programs and partnerships.

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Am I eligible for Mass Cultural Council funding?
The Council provides funding to non-profit 501(c)3 organizations incorporated by the state of Massachusetts with a proven record of public programs and/or services in the arts, humanities, and interpretive sciences. In some program areas, funding is available to elementary and secondary schools, libraries, municipal agencies, universities or school-affiliated groups, and community groups.

Mass Cultural Council also provides funding to individuals who have made Massachusetts their legal residence for at least two years and who have demonstrated excellence in an artistic discipline.

For specific eligibility requirements, please refer to our eligibility page or contact your Mass Cultural Council Program Staff.

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How are grants awarded?
In all program areas, Mass Cultural Council funding is determined by a competitive panel review. Panels comprise experts from throughout the nation, and vary according to discipline and program area. The peer panel process is the most widespread and accepted practice used by cultural funding agencies to distribute funds fairly and equitably.

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How can I apply?
Check the eligibility requirements and application deadlines for the grant program that best meets your needs. If you are a new applicant, contact your Mass Cultural Council Program Staff for guidance.

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What other services does Mass Cultural Council provide?
Mass Cultural Council assists cultural organizations, local cultural councils, schools, and artists develop tools, skills, and relationships they need to increase cultural participation and thrive in the 21st century.

Mass Cultural Council provides workshops, seminars, one-on-one assistance, and web resources to aide the work of cultural organizations, local cultural councils, artists, and educators. See our list of services. The agency also celebrates the artistic and humanistic accomplishments of our state's outstanding individual artists and organizations through the Commonwealth Awards.

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Who can I contact to learn more?
Our staff list is available online. All media inquiries should be directed to the Communications Department at 617-858-2720.

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