Accessible and Inclusive Arts Grant Program

The High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire Accessible and Inclusive Arts (AIA) Grant Program: Summary

As our mission statement says “…the High Hopes Foundation brings hope and joy to New Hampshire children who face medical or developmental challenges by facilitating ongoing access to inclusive social Experiences otherwise unavailable to them and their families…”

The Accessible and Inclusive Arts (AIA) Grant Program fosters authentic, enjoyable, and educational arts and performance experiences that are accessible and inclusive to our target audiences and the community at large. It helps artists, performers, and arts organizations and venues in New Hampshire get closer to these ideals and enrich not just High Hopes Foundation children and families, but our communities as a whole.

By making grant funds available to selected arts organizations, venues, and individual artists, and teachers, the High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire will support classes and events that focus on our audience of individuals from age 3 to 18 — but that also actively include community members of all ages and abilities. This grant program fosters universal design to integrate, not segregate, individuals from age 3 to 18 with a wide variety of capabilities into community arts and performance classes and events.

Return to Top

Why does the AIA grant program exist?

The program exists to encourage arts individuals and organizations who may or may not have thought about inclusive and accessible activities to try them, succeed, and ultimately continue to host them as a matter of course – even without grants. Among the goals of these grants are:

  1. Get arts individuals and organizations to support inclusionary events by reducing financial barriers to testing events.
  2. Help individuals and organizations realize they can actually make money (beyond grant subsidies) by attracting audiences they may not have previously thought of accessing who are regularly seeking events to attend or participate in.
  3. Encourage many constituents – families, arts organizations, government and NGOs, and others – to see these activities not as special charity events but rather as just a part of everyday life and business. To help show the world that inclusion is and should be a normal part of life.    Return to Top

Who is eligible to apply?

Any for-profit or nonprofit arts organization in the state of New Hamphire is elegible. This may include an individual, an LLC, a corporation, a small organization, a medium sized organization, or even a large performing arts facility or event.

Return to Top

What kinds of activities and events are eligible?

A wide range of events and activities are eligible. Extra consideration will be given to events that are planned as an ongoing series.  The partial example list includes, and illustrates the directions we are looking at:

  • A fine arts class or class series like pottery, painting, glass blowing, woodworking, sculpting, metalwork, 3-D printing and “maker” studios, etc.
  • A live theater event for viewing audiences, perhaps including a special backstage tour or engagement with the cast
  • A live theater event to participate in as a cast or crew member
  • A storytelling performance or audience event
  • A singing or other musical instrument performance or audience event
  • A sensory friendly movie in a public theater at a typical time (for example, Star Wars at 8pm on a Friday evening and not a “G” rated movie at 10am on a Wednesday)
  • A concert event in a small, medium, large, or even stadium venue

The High Hopes Foundation team is very open to additional ideas, including viewing or participating in sports events or other arts events not listed here.

Return to Top

How much can money you apply for?

Grantees are eligible for $100 to $3,000 grants. The final funding amount is at the sole discretion of the High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire.

Return to Top

What can you use the money for?

The grant application and supporting materials must be very specific about what the money will be used for and must reflect the AIA grant goal of inclusive activities for all. We are open to many purposes:

  1. Supplies and materials
  2. Rental of space
  3. Hiring of additional helpers or artists or facilitators

Return to Top

Can the grant be combined with other grants/funds?

If you have another grant already, and can justify how an AIA grant can further our stated goals as well as the goals of the other grantor, and the other grantor allows this kind of combination of funds, then yes, we would consider this.

Return to Top

What is the application process like?

The sole way to apply is via our AIA Grant Web Form.  You can access this form here:[]. Beyond your basic organization information, the form contains three main questions, as well as the ability to upload up to three additional supporting documents. The application process, depending on how much material you already have ready, should take from 30 minutes to 2 hours.

Return to Top

What kinds of things will make getting a grant more likely?

The High Hopes Foundation team and advisors in our communities (as needed for expertise) will look at the following characteristics of the grant application as we consider who shall receive funds.

  1. What is the costs of the activity for an individual or family?
  2. How well does it promote inclusion, universal design, and accessibility?
  3. How will the event(s) be promoted by the grantee? What formal press, social media (organic and/or paid), and other community outreach is the grantee willing to perform?
  4. How many attendees are targeted and/or guaranteed to attend?
  5. Is this a recurring or one-time event?
  6. How much of the organization’s own money will be spent in addition to grant money?
  7. What kind of profit, if any, do they hope to make off the event? *
  8. What experience does the individual or organization have with inclusive and accessible events?
  9. Is the tenor of the grant proposal seen as a “charity” event or a “community-based inclusive” event?
  10. Other characteristics that the High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire sees in the proposal that best reflects our organization’s mission.

Return to Top

How much in advance of the event should I apply?

Please apply for a grant for an event that is at least 60 to 90 days after your application date. Certain exceptions may be made for an event that is sooner than 60 to 90 days out.

Return to Top

How soon will I (we) find out if we receive a grant?

After the AIA grant form and materials are submitted, the High Hopes Foundation team will evaluate applications on a rolling basis at least once each month, and sometimes more often at the discretion of the team and based on the amount of applications.

Return to Top

If we receive a grant, what help will we get in promotion?

Grantees are expected to have a communication plan about their event:  Local and statewide papers, event sites, arts publications and web sites, social media channels, events calendars, and more. The High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire will partner with you on these efforts, but the core efforts will be your organization’s responsibility and the detail of promotion you plan and express in your application and supporting documents will be one consideration of whether or not you receive the grant.

Return to Top

Are we allowed to charge participants in a program funded with the grant and/or make a profit?

YES! If fact, you are required to charge a per-person ticket or fee. The idea is that a “free” event is less likely to be attended – many may sign up but because they didn’t pay they may skip it. The events may be low-cost, high-cost, or sliding scale. Your application and its supporting documents should show your plan for ticket costs.

Your organization making a profit is not only allowed, it is encouraged! The idea is that the grant will help subsidize some tests, but that ultimately, if your event is valuable enough to the community as a whole, including High Hopes Foundation families, they can eventually be self-funding.

Return to Top

What other requirements are there if we receive an AIA grant?

  1. Use official High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire graphics in web, print, social, and television, or other visual promotion.
  2. Use approved and provided “sound bites” about what the High Hopes Foundation organization mission and the AIA grant mission is during interviews with print, radio, television, podcast, and other media.
  3. A brief request for and tracking of “High Hopes Foundation” donations using a common method like a donation jar or a 50/50 raffle.
  4. A short debrief of the critical success (or failure) factors of the event with one or more High Hopes Foundation staff or volunteer members either in writing (a page or two) and/or in a 30 minute face-to-face or phone interview.
  5. Willingness to fill out online surveys after the event.
  6. Willingness to send out online surveys to the attendees of your event to get their feedback.

Return to Top

Ownership and liability of these events and activities

  1. Grantees are required to prove that you have proper insurance or an insurance rider for the kind of event/activity you will hold in a public place. Grantees may use a portion of the grant funds to obtain a rider, if needed and/or appropriate.
  2. Individuals under the Grantee’s employment, under contract, or volunteering will be properly vetted by the Grantee or the Grantee’s agents to perform the functions that they will be performing in support of the event.
  3. Grantees must indemnify, in writing, the High Hopes Foundation of New Hampshire from any liability for damage, injury, or other loss or injury to Grantees or participants – each Grantee takes responsibility for the event and its safe and appropriate execution.

Return to Top