The New Jersey Arts and Culture Renewal Fund recently awarded $664,500 in grants to 30 nonprofits statewide.
Since its founding in 2020, the fund has awarded more than $7.4 million to more than 200 organizations across New Jersey. The fund, hosted by the Princeton Area Community Foundation, aims to offer critical grant dollars for many of the state’s smaller nonprofit organizations in the arts, culture and historical sectors.
The most recent grants were awarded in two phases. Eleven nonprofits received grants from the Fund for the first time, and for the first time, one round of grants was dedicated to history organizations.
Sharnita Johnson, VP of strategy, impact and communications at the Victoria Foundation and co-chair of the fund, explained it this way.
“The New Jersey Arts and Culture Renewal Fund directly addresses disparities in funding that were present before the pandemic and have increased in its aftermath,” she said. “The smaller cultural organizations supported by the New Jersey Arts and Culture Renewal Fund serve multiple functions in their communities. They are important anchors central to community wellbeing and quality of life in the areas they serve.”
The New Jersey Arts and Culture Renewal Fund is an unprecedented collaboration between private and public donors. Jeremy Grunin, president of the Grunin Foundation and Fund co-chair, said they are grateful to be entering their third year of grantmaking, as the effects of the pandemic are still being felt in the sector.
“NJACRF continues to evolve to best support New Jersey arts, culture and historical organizations,” he said. “The folks in this sector have tirelessly shown their dedication to their profession by carrying out their work even when they had limited capacity and resources. They know how important the arts, culture and history are to the wellbeing of individuals and the entire community. Their work did not stop, and neither will ours.”
A look at those who received funding:
Grants ranged in size from $2,000 to $50,000, with an average grant size of $22,000. Grants were awarded to:
· Chicken Bone Beach Historical Foundation Inc., Atlantic City;
· Atlantic City Arts Foundation, Atlantic City;
· South Jersey Cultural Alliance, Hammonton;
Cape May County
· Harriet Tubman Museum, Cape May;
· Center for Community Arts, Inc., Cape May;
· Alice Paul Institute, Mount Laurel;
· Whitesbog Preservation Trust, Browns Mills section of Pemberton;
· Lawnside Historical Society, Inc., Lawnside;
· Camden County Historical Society, Camden;
· Camden Fireworks, Camden;
· Superior Arts Institute, Camden;
· Millville Army Airfield Museum, Inc., Millville;
· Montclair History Center, Montclair;
· New Jersey Historical Society, Newark;
· Newark Arts, Newark;
· Dance New Jersey, Verona;
· Surati for Performing Arts, Jersey City;
· Jersey City Arts Council, Inc., Jersey City;
· Sixth Regiment of the US Colored Troops Civil War Re-actors, Trenton;
· Young Audiences NJ and Eastern PA, Princeton;
· Lost Souls Public Memorial Project Inc., East Brunswick;
· Redhawk Indigenous Arts Council, South Amboy;
· New Jersey Theatre Alliance, Allenhurst;
· Jazz Arts Project, Inc., Red Bank;
· Monmouth Arts, Red Bank;
· T. Thomas Fortune Foundation, Red Bank;
· Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum, Skillman section of Montgomery;
· Sparta Historical Society Inc., Sparta;
· Peters Valley School of Craft, Layton section of Sandyston;
· Institute of Music for Children, Elizabeth.
Smaller arts and culture organizations contribute greatly to our understanding of each other and of our world, said Lynne Toye, executive director of the New Jersey Arts and Culture Renewal Fund.
“By supporting organizations that tell inclusive stories, we are helping to provide opportunities for representation of all who contribute to the rich and diverse cultural community of New Jersey,” she said.