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Grants for arts education and outreach announced


The West Virginia Commission on the Arts of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, has announced applications are being accepted for Challenge America grants available to arts organizations, college and university community outreach programs, and schools in West Virginia.

It is anticipated that approximately $121,000 in Challenge America funds will be available through the Commission for projects that demonstrate the benefits the arts bring to families and communities in West Virginia. Successful grant applicants will be required to provide a three-to-five match for the funds (i.e., three dollars for every five dollars granted).

Challenge America encourages arts organizations to offer outreach programs that will extend programs into adjacent communities. Areas of focus include: arts education, access to the arts, community arts development, positive alternatives for youth, and cultural heritage/preservation. All proposals must represent new programs or an expansion of existing arts programming.

Applications to the Commission must be postmarked by July 1, 2003. Awards will be announced by October 1.

For more information about the Challenge America grants, call Richard Ressmeyer, director of arts for the Division, at (304) 558-0240, ext. 721. Information and application forms for all available arts grants from the Commission are posted on the Division’s website at

Challenge America grants with a streamlined review process designed to bring projects to communities on an accelerated timetable, are available directly from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). The application deadline for these “fast track” grants is June 2. For more information, visit the NEA’s website at

The Commission directs state policy and allocations for arts programs in West Virginia. The Division, an agency of the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts, brings together the state’s past, present and future through programs and services in the areas of archives and history, the arts, historic preservation and museums. Visit the Division’s website at for more information about programs of the Division. The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.


Ginny Painter
Director of Public Information
West Virginia Division of Culture and History
The Cultural Center
1900 Kanawha Boulevard, East
Charleston, WV 25305-0300
Phone (304) 558-0220
Fax (304) 558-2779