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program guidelines

Program Guidelines

 What’s the Goal of ArtReach’s Funding Program? 


ArtReach supports community-based arts programming led by youth artists and youth-led groups/ organizations/ collectives. These programs must engage youth from equity-deserving populations in Toronto who face systemic barriers to accessing high-quality arts opportunities.

Our grant funds are available each year thanks to our partnership with the Toronto Arts Council (TAC). Learn about this partnership here.


 Is My Program Eligible For Funding? 


The programs we fund must…

  • Be coordinated and delivered by individual artists 13-29 or groups/ organizations/ collectives where leadership positions and decision-making responsibilities are held by young people 13-29 from equity-deserving communities

  • Be offered to youth participants aged 13-29 from equity-deserving communities who face systemic barriers to accessing high-quality arts opportunities

  • Be a program and not a project (see our FAQs for more information)

  • Be delivered in Toronto, by a Toronto-based applicant, for participants in Toronto (this includes only the City of Toronto, Scarborough, North York, and Etobicoke, not the GTA)

  • Be free for participants to participate in

  • Be first and foremost focused on the arts and artistic skill-building. Other benefits/ focuses must be secondary to a focus on the arts

  • Be registration-based and serve the same group of participants throughout its duration


We don’t fund…

  • Drop-in style programming

  • Events, festivals, etc.

  • Personal or collective projects

  • Art therapy programs

  • Programs whose primary activities are religious or political

 Who Does ArtReach Fund? 


ArtReach’s funding mandate is to support programs being carried out by individual youth and youth-led groups/ organizations/ collectives. The applicant name and primary applicant on your application must be a youth or youth-led group/ organization/ collective, and cannot be an adult individual or an adult-led organization.

We recognize that there are many models for youth-led programming. ArtReach will fund:

  • Unincorporated groups/ organizations/ collectives, or incorporated non-profit organizations/ registered charities led by youth 13-29

  • Individual young artists aged 13-29

  • Youth groups that are housed within larger not-for-profit or charitable organizations*

  • Adult applicants providing arts training opportunities to youth facing severe barriers**


*If you are an organization that is not youth-led but are seeking funding for a program that is led by youth 13-29, please have the youth leaders apply for a grant directly. The Applicant Name on your application cannot be an adult individual or an adult-led organization.


 **Proposals from applicants that are not youth/ youth-led will only be considered where the barriers being faced by the participants are severe. In these cases, there must be a strong youth engagement model in place to allow for young people to still carry meaningful leadership roles in the program. In this case, applicants must receive approval from ArtReach’s Program Manager before applying. Failing to seek this approval before applying will result in your application being ineligible for review.

 WHAT Rules Should I Be Aware Of? 


General Rules

  • Applicants can receive a maximum of three ArtReach grants

  • Grantees must complete their current ArtReach-funded programs and submit their final reports before re-applying for funding

  • Prep for approved programs cannot start earlier than May 1st of the year of application, and programming itself cannot start before June 1st

  • Successful applicants who applied as an Individual Artist must provide their SIN number to ArtReach for tax purposes

  • Applicants may receive less than the amount requested

  • Applicants may only submit one grant application per funding round

  • Grant Review Team members cannot apply to the round of funding they’re adjudicating


Applying to TAC & ArtReach:

  • Applicants cannot receive funds from both ArtReach and TAC for the same activities and timelines

  • Applicants cannot receive an ArtReach grant while holding a TAC Strategic Funding Program Grant (see the list of TAC’s Strategic Funding grants here)

  • Applicants who currently have a TAC Operating Grant are not eligible for ArtReach funding

  • TAC should not be listed as a source of revenue in your ArtReach program budget


 What Art Forms Does ArtReach Support? 


ArtReach supports skill-building programs in emerging, popular, and traditional art forms (click here to see a list of the projects ArtReach has funded). This includes but is not limited to hands-on art making in the following disciplines: music creation/ recording/ production, dance, drama/ theatre/ performing arts, creative writing, poetry, spoken word, carnival and circus, Indigenous arts, film, TV, radio, podcasting, culinary arts, photography, digital media, multimedia, visual arts, zine-making, street art, graphic design, textiles, storytelling, fashion design, aesthetics, floral design, etc.


ArtReach also supports programs that provide artistic professional development (artrepreneurship) to youth participants. This includes the development of skills needed to succeed as an artist (EG. branding and marketing as an artist, arts administration, selling your art, exhibition planning, writing artist grants, portfolio development, legal considerations for artists such as copyright and IP, etc.). Artrepreneurship programs do not require hands-on art making as part of their programming.

 How much can I apply for? 


STREAM 1: Any applicant

  • You can request up to $10,000 for your program


STREAM 2: If you have been funded by ArtReach before (as an individual artist, a group/ organization/ collective, or as a lead team member of a previously funded group/ organization/ collective)

  • You can request up to $15,000 for your program

 What Can I Spend Grant Funds On? 


Only expenses directly related to the program you’re applying for can be included in your funding request. If there are other expenses not included in the above list that are critical to the success of your program, please discuss this with ArtReach staff at


  • Salaries and/or honoraria for staff, facilitators, and guest artists

  • Art supplies

  • Equipment rental costs

  • Transportation costs

  • Program planning, development, and evaluation-related costs

  • Staff and volunteer training costs

  • Promotion and outreach costs

  • Liability insurance

  • Rental and permit fees

  • Participant honoraria

  • Capital costs, such as equipment purchase (can be up to 20% of your total request amount)

  • Web design and printing costs

  • End-of-program event costs

  • Translation, interpretation services, or any accommodation services/ supports


  • General operating expenses unrelated to the program

  • Retroactive expense coverage

  • Deficit/ debt reduction

  • Fundraising campaigns

  • Capital costs that exceed 20% of your total request amount

  • Capital costs not directly related to the program being applied for

  • Substantial capital or infrastructure costs (e.g. real estate purchase, major renovations)

  • Donations (you cannot donate your grant funds to another organization)

  • Bursaries, scholarships, sponsorships, or individual requests

  • Prizes



Programs involving Deaf artists, artists with disabilities, and artists living with mental illness may apply for an additional grant of up to $5,000 to cover accessibility-related expenses. Please click here to read more about this grant.


 What is the Voluntary Self-Identification Section on the Application? 

Applicants are encouraged to complete the Voluntary Self-Identification section of the ArtReach grant application to help the Toronto Arts Council determine whether its programs and services are reaching a diverse and wide range of Toronto artists based on their Equity Priority Policy. The form cannot be accessed by our Grant Review Team and therefore will not be used in the evaluation of your application. 

Click here to read more about this. ​If you have any questions regarding the provision of this voluntary self-identification information, please contact



If your application is eligible, ArtReach's Grant Review Team (GRT) will review your application and funding request. The GRT is a group of qualified volunteers with extensive experience in youth engagement through the arts, and includes young artists and community workers from across Toronto experienced in a wide variety of artistic disciplines (see their bios here!). 


You will receive an email with the results on the success of your application within approximately 60 days of the deadline. All funding decisions are final.


If your program is not approved for funding, you will be provided with feedback via email on why your application was declined, and if applicable, a recommendation for next steps.

 what are my responsibilities as a grantee? 


If you are approved for funding, you must:

  • Provide your SIN number to ArtReach (for Individual Artists only)

  • Stay in touch with ArtReach for the duration of your program

  • Complete and submit a final report and budget

  • Sign the City of Toronto’s Declaration of Compliance with Anti-Harassment/ Discrimination Legislation & Policy

  • Acknowledge ArtReach and the Toronto Arts Council’s funding support through your promotional materials and final products (where applicable)

  • Sign a contract with ArtReach and the Toronto Arts Council agreeing to these terms

  • Allow stories about you/ your program’s impact to be shared through our communication channels


 what If I need Accessibility support? 


We understand that not everyone will find our application process accessible. If you require any support in completing your application package, please contact ArtReach’s Program Manager at

 how do I apply? 


ArtReach’s granting program opens annually on December 1st, and a link to the application form will become available on The grant period closes February 1st at 11:59 pm. We do not accept late submissions.


To submit an application, please:

  • Complete the online application form by February 1st at 11:59 pm

  • Download and complete both the budget and workplan templates from and upload them to your online application form where prompted


Program Eligibility

Applicant Eligibility

General Rules

ArtReach x TAC Rules

Money Matters

Application Form



Review Process

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