Future Focus Granting Program

The Future Focus Granting Program is a pilot program developed in collaboration with and funded by three partners: Calgary Arts Development, the Rozsa Foundation and the Calgary Foundation.

Program Overview

The past two and a half years have seen significant upheaval in the arts, and many arts organizations are now grappling with the question “what is this moment asking of us?” by exploring new directions, priorities and identities in response to their changing context.

In support of this work, the Future Focus Granting Program is a joint initiative of Calgary Arts Development, the Rozsa Foundation and the Calgary Foundation aimed at supporting arts organizations to investigate, plan, and implement strategic adaptations in their operations to build capacity, strengthen business models, explore new directions, examine structural change and address life cycle questions. Organizations will be asked to speak to how equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility are embedded into this work.

The funding partners recognize the resources and expenses required to responsibly consider such significant adaptations, and through this program, organizations can access funds to develop strategies and engage expertise to assist them in their journeys navigating the significant questions, challenges and opportunities they face.

This work may incorporate issues relating to: 

  • organizational strategy development and planning
  • business model evaluation and shifts
  • sustained inter-organizational collaborations
  • succession planning to transition from founding & longstanding leaders
  • explorations of mergers and closures

This is a pilot program which builds upon Calgary Arts Development’s Organization Structural Change Program, and the capacity-building grants offered by the Rozsa Foundation and Calgary Foundation. This joint initiative will be evaluated on an ongoing basis with the participation and support of applicants and grantees. 

There is $400,000 available and applications will be accepted until the funds are expended. 

Who Can Apply
  • Calgary-based arts organizations who are registered charities or not-for-profits, or arts-based organizations who have comparable organizational structures.
  • Organizations cannot be receiving project support from any of the three partner funders individually for the same work.
What Can You Apply For

Grant amounts available are based on the nature of the work to be undertaken.

  • Exploration Phase (identification of needs, initial development, project planning): Funding request generally up to $15,000
  • Implementation Phase: Funding request generally up to $25,000
How to Apply

Organizations interested in this program must meet with a team member of one of the granting organizations to discuss their eligibility for the program and intended activities. If the proposal is eligible, the funder representative will work with the applicant to determine the necessary application requirements and provide access to the online form. Organizations only need to meet with one of the below representatives. 

Applications will be reviewed monthly. Apply by November 7, 2022 and December 5, 2022.

Funder representatives:

Melissa Tuplin, Director, Community Investment & Impact, Calgary Arts Development: melissa.tuplin@calgaryartsdevelopment.com

Ayla Stephen, Granting Manager, Rozsa Foundation: ayla@rozsafoundation.org

Brigitte von Rothemburg, Grants & Volunteer Program Associate, Calgary Foundation: BvonRothemburg@calgaryfoundation.org

Evaluation & Reporting

Funding decisions will be made by program staff as applications are received. The funders will seek additional advice or recommendations from individuals with expertise in non-profit organizational strategy, life cycle management, and planning if needed. If outside feedback is required, applications will be anonymized and identifying information about the applicant redacted. Any individuals with access to grant applications are held to strict conflict of interest and confidentiality agreements.

Applications will be evaluated based on the below criteria:

  • The applicant has defined and understands the priority(s) they are responding to within their own organizational context
  • The applicant has defined and understands the current state of their organization’s operations and programming
  • The applicant has demonstrated why this work will help them achieve their organizational goals or learning needs
  • The applicant has demonstrated a clear and reasonable project design, including timeline and budget, in order to accomplish the stated goal
  • The applicant has demonstrated a clear plan to learn from and evaluate their work
  • The applicant is undertaking meaningful work on advancing equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility within the context of their organization and this project              

Unique final reporting requirements will be determined with the grantee, with a focus on developing opportunities for peer-to-peer learning and knowledge sharing. In addition, grantees may be asked to participate in surveys, interviews and/or focus groups to contribute to the ongoing evaluation of this pilot program. 

Application Checklist

Tell us who you are:

  • Organization contact information
  • Organization mandate
  • Organization structure (e.g. non-profit, charity etc.)
  • Financial statements (most recent completed fiscal year, including statement of operations & balance sheet)
  • Board list / Organization structure chart

Tell us what the focus of this grant request is:

  • Select all that apply:
    • Organizational life cycle (amalgamations, mergers, closures etc.)
    • Organizational structural change (business or operating models, mandate, direction etc.)
    • Strategic adaptations (capacity building, evaluation, long-term development, succession planning etc.)
    • Other (Please describe)
  • Describe what you intend to achieve through this work, and how it supports your mandate and organizational goals.
  • What stage are you at?
    • Exploration Phase (e.g. identification of needs, initial development, project planning)
      • Funding request generally up to $15,000
    • Implementation 
      • Funding request generally up to $25,000

Tell us what led you here and what you hope to learn:

  • Describe any previous activities, factors, decisions or conditions that led to this work.
    • Have you received funding support from Calgary Arts Development, Rozsa Foundation,or Calgary Foundation for previous phases of this project?
  • Describe what success might look like for this work, including what you hope to learn and what outcomes you hope to achieve.
  • Describe how this approach is divergent or different from previous practices or work.
  • Describe how you measure, evaluate or track your learning.

Tell us how you will complete this work:

  • Describe the project plan, timeline,and budget for this work.
  • Please upload a full project budget.
  • Are you working with or intend to work with any other organization or individual, e.g. collaborations, partnerships, contractors, consultants?
    • If you are engaging external expertise, please include a high level work plan and the quote from the consultant / contractor.
    • If you are collaborating or partnering with another organization, please include a letter of intent or support.
  • Describe how you are ensuring that this work considers and embeds equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility in its planning, implementation and community context.

Example support material:
(The necessary support material will be requested as appropriate after initial conversation with funder contact)

  • Cash flow forecast
  • Draft financial statements
  • Project budget support (e.g. quotes, invoices, calculations, projections)
  • Confirmation of board support 
  • Strategic plan 
  • Information about contributors (e.g. biographies, consultant CVs, collaborator mandates)
  • Other (e.g. feasibility studies, proof of concept, prior project reports)

If you have questions about this program, please contact Melissa Tuplin (melissa.tuplin@calgaryartsdevelopment.com)Ayla Stephen (ayla@rozsafoundation.org) or Brigitte von Rothemburg (BvonRothemburg@calgaryfoundation.org).

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