General Operating Support I

General Operating Support I Grants (GOS I) are available to non-profit arts and/or humanities organizations that have had both allowable cash operating revenue and expenses of at least $50,000 for the last three completed fiscal years. Grants for FY22 will be awarded for activities occurring between July 1, 2021 and June 30, 2022.

Award amounts range from at least $10,000 up to $50,000. The grant request may not exceed 35% of the organization’s most recently completed fiscal year’s allowable cash operating revenue, expenses, or $50,000, whichever is lower. Requests over $25,000 require the applicant to submit an audit or financial review for the most recently completed fiscal year.

By awarding GOS I Grants, the Arts & Humanities Council of Montgomery County (AHCMC) seeks to:

  • Encourage organizations to maintain an active, two-way, ongoing relationship with the community in the planning, participation, and evaluation of public activities, which include intentional strategies for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Access (DEIA);
  • Promote stability in arts and humanities organizations by providing a base of funding to support operating budgets;
  • Help ensure diverse arts and humanities experiences for constituents of Montgomery County, MD;
  • Stimulate local support and involvement in the arts and humanities, including volunteer participation, audience development, and financial contributions;
  • Strengthen the scholarly and artistic capabilities of arts and humanities organizations; and
  • Improve and/or stabilize the management infrastructure and effectiveness of arts and humanities organizations.

We are no longer accepting Letters of Intent for FY22 GOS I Grants. Sign up for the Grants Newsletter below to receive updates about the FY23 grants cycle, other grant opportunities, deadlines, and webinars!

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    Important Dates

    Letter of Intent Deadline
    Friday, February 12, 2021 - 11:59 pm
    Application Deadline
    Monday, March 15, 2021 - 11:59 pm


    Karen Judson
    Grants Program Manager
    (301) 565-3804
    Ana-Alicia Feng
    Grants Program Assistant Manager
    (301) 565-3805 ext. 21
    Takenya LaViscount
    Grants Director
    (240) 839-4519
    Dates + Deadlines

    FY22 Important Dates

    • Guidelines Published – Wednesday, December 23, 2020
    • Letter of Intent Deadline – Friday, February 12, 2021 at 11:59 p.m.
    • Application Deadline – Monday, March 15, 2021 at 11:59 p.m.
    • These deadlines have passed.

    First-time applicants are highly encouraged to contact AHCMC grants staff. All Letters of Intent, applications, and relevant materials must be submitted online through AHCMC’s grants portal, SurveyMonkey Apply (SM Apply).

    Late letters of intent, applications, and relevant materials will not be accepted.

    Additional Dates Post-Application

    • Panel Review (virtual) – 2 dates in April 2021
    • June 1, 2021 – FY20 990 and FY20 audit
      • Deadline Extended to June 30, 2021 at 11.:59 p.m.
    • Award Announcement – late June 2021
    • FY22 Mid-Year Report Deadline – January 31, 2022
    • FY22 Final Report Deadline – July 31, 2022
    Workshops + Webinars


    • Thursday, February 4, 2021 from 11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
    • Wednesday, February 10, 2021 from 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
    • These events have passed.

      All AHCMC webinars will be hosted through the Zoom platform. Go to our Workshops & Webinars page to see upcoming workshops and webinars for all open grant categories.

      Webinars allow grant-seekers to ask AHCMC grants staff specific questions about the grant guidelines, application, and online grants portal.

      At every webinar, grants staff will review major eligibility requirements, present an overview of the grant category, and offer technical assistance for both the application process and the online grants portal.

      Guidelines + Eligibility


      Required Letter of Intent Materials:

      1. Arts/Humanities Mission Statement;
      2. AHCMC Budget Worksheet;
      3. IRS Letter of Determination;
      4. Montgomery, MD Primary Office Address;
      5. List of Board of Directors;
      6. Information for at least one paid employee;
      7. Percentage of Programs in Montgomery County, MD;
      8. Confirmation of ability to meet the 990 deadline; and
      9. Confirmation of ability to meet the audit/financial review deadline, if applicable.

      Required Application Materials:

      1. Completed Narrative
      2. Organizational Support Materials
        • Bios of key staff and volunteers;
        • Current Strategic Plan, if available; and
        • Organizational Chart, if available.
      3. Financial Support Materials
        • FY20 990 or letter of extension (990 must be received by AHCMC no later than June 1, 2021);
        • FY20 audit or financial review or letter of extension, if applicable (audit/financial review must be received by AHCMC no later than June 1, 2021);
        • Profit & Loss Statement for the most recently completed fiscal year;
        • Balance Sheet for the most recently completed fiscal year;
        • Current fiscal year operating budget with actuals year-to-date; and
        • Projected FY22 budget, if available.
      4. Programming Support Materials
      5. Work Sample(s)

      Information about Audits and Financial Reviews

      An audit is conducted by an independent Certified Public Accountant (CPA) not employed by the organization and provides an unbiased opinion regarding the organization’s financial statements. The auditor conducts their examination in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). An audit requires a much higher level of scrutiny and analysis as compared to a financial review.

      A financial review is also conducted by an independent CPA and provides assurance that the organization’s financial statements are materially accurate. However, as a financial review is more limited in scope than an audit, the assurance is more limited.

      How does an organization determine whether GOS I or GOS II is a better fit?

      When determining which funding opportunity is most appropriate, applicants should consider which category will allow the organization to grow in a healthy manner, strengthen sustainability, and create strong partnerships in the community. GOS II is a highly competitive and rigorous category. Rather than focusing on the grant award, applicants are should consider organizational capacity, financial stability, and right-sizing. Applicants are always encouraged to contact AHCMC staff for guidance before the application deadline if it is unclear which grant category represents the best fit.

      Eligibility Requirements

      Read the guidelines for full eligibility requirements. An organization eligible to apply has to have met all the following criteria for at least the last three completed fiscal years immediately prior to the Letter of Intent deadline:

      • Has its primary mission as the exhibition, presentation, production and/or performance of, and/or education in, an arts and/or humanities discipline, and/or provides support services to artists and/or scholars and/or arts and/or humanities organizations;
      • Has its primary office in Montgomery County, MD, as demonstrated by the address included in the IRS Letter of Determination;
      • Has a balanced budget and documented allowable annual cash operating revenue and expenses of no less than $50,000;
      • Has a balanced budget and annual documented cash operating expenses/income of no less than $50,000;
      • Demonstrates 501(c)(3) status as described on page 5 of the FY22 GOS I guidelines;
      • Is governed by an independent, legally liable board of directors operating under a mission statement for the organization and an operating budget specific to the organization;
      • At least 40% of its board members reside and/or work in Montgomery County, MD;
      • At least one paid employee (not contracted staff) works a minimum of 5 hours a week (or 20 hours a week for grant requests over $25,000) to support the organization’s board, comply with the grant requirements, and maintain ongoing programming;
      • Offers at least 51% of its programs and services in Montgomery County, MD, as demonstrated by previous, current, and projected activities and programming. Activities may be open to the public, with or without an admission fee, in person or virtually. If in person, activities should follow current COVID-19 guidelines for in-person events as required by the Montgomery County Health Department; and
      • Has met all outstanding requirements for any grant(s) received from the Arts & Humanities Council of Montgomery County in prior years.
        Application + Templates

        This application deadline has passed.

        Need to review or download your application? Access SurveyMonkey Apply (SM Apply) here:

        For current grantees, all grant agreements, mid-year, and final reports must be completed online through AHCMC’s grants portal, SurveyMonkey Apply (SM Apply).

        Previous Grants Awarded

        FY22 General Operating Support I Grants (GOS I)

        $847,477 awarded for July 1, 2021 – June 30, 2022

        GOS I Grants provide general operating support to non-profit arts and/or humanities organizations located in Montgomery County, MD that have had both annual cash operating revenue and expenses of at least $50,000 for the past three completed fiscal years and at least one part-time paid staff member. 35 organizations received FY22 awards in this category.

        Click here to review grants awarded for General Operating Support I Grants from previous fiscal years, and all grants awarded from our other grants categories.

        After School Dance Fund, Inc., dba Baila4Life

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($18,000)

        The After School Dance Fund’s (ASDF) establishes strong Latin dance clubs inside Montgomery County Public Schools to strengthen the social emotional development of youth by promoting health, exercise, heritage, and unity through Latin dance education.

        Akhmedova Ballet Foundation,dba. Akhmedova Ballet Academy

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($32,843)

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($32,843) – The Akhmedova Ballet Academy is dedicated to providing the finest quality ballet training utilizing the Vaganova Method, with personal and artistic mentoring to prepare young talented dancers to become strong and fully developed artists ready to take their places in major dance companies around the world. They strive for diversity, inclusion, and equality for all dancers.

        Artpreneurs, Inc., dba Arts on the Block

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($41,000)

        Arts on the Block (AOB) empowers creative youth to imagine and shape fulfilling futures, join the creative workforce, and contribute to the quality of life of their communities. AOB achieves its mission by providing real-world experiences in the arts and entrepreneurial training geared toward opening new pathways to learning, self-discovery, and achievement. They identify, recruit, and retain youth who are rich in promise despite challenging economic circumstances and limited educational attainment in their families.

        Arts for the Aging,Inc.

        Rockville, Maryland ($37,500)

        Arts for the Aging (AFTA) engages older adults and caregivers in health improvement and life enhancement through regular participation in the multi- disciplinary arts.

        Bel Cantanti Opera

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($18,000)

        Bel Cantanti Opera’s mission is to support young opera singers through performance opportunities, and to bring those opportunities to the community with reasonable ticket prices.

        Cantate Chamber Singers, Inc.

        Takoma Park, Maryland ($12,960)

        Cantate’s mission is to stimulate awareness and appreciation of sacred and secular choral music through innovative programming, creative outreach and collaborative performances with other artists and ensembles.

        Carpe Diem Arts, Inc.,dba Carpe Diem Arts

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($18,563)

        Carpe Diem Arts engages and strengthens communities across generations, cultures, and socio-economic divides through the visual, literary, and performing arts.

        Chevy Chase Historical Society

        Chevy Chase, Maryland ($10,800)

        The Chevy Chase Historical Society collects, records, interprets and shares materials relating to the history of Chevy Chase, Maryland, one of America’s first streetcar suburbs. The organization provides resources for historical research and sponsors a variety of programs and activities to foster knowledge and appreciation of the community’s history.

        Clancy Works,Inc.,dba ClancyWorks Dance Company

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($36,325)

        ClancyWorks Dance Company increases public understanding of the arts by presenting high-quality dance performance and educational programs; expanding the relevance of dance in people’s lives by demonstrating that creative movement can be used to solve conflicts, develop community cohesion, improve academic achievement, and promote civic responsibility; and nurturing leadership skills and artistic excellence in emerging artists.

        CREATE Arts Center, Inc.

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($36,000)

        CREATE Arts Center sparks creativity, fosters learning, empowers individuals, and facilitates community connections through the visual arts.

        Dance Exchange, Inc.

        Takoma Park, Maryland ($37,500)

        Fueled by generosity and curiosity, Dance Exchange expands who gets to dance, where dance happens, what dance is about, and why dance matters.

        Docs In Progress, Inc., dba Docs In Progress

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($21,600)

        Docs In Progress seeks to create community through documentary film. The organization educates, inspires, and transforms the way people view their world by providing individuals the tools to tell stories through documentary film.

        Flying V, Ltd., dba Flying V

        Bethesda, Maryland ($35,205)

        Flying V inspires people to live life with a greater sense of appreciation and adventure, and to combat the increasing epidemic of existential loneliness in our culture. Flying V bridges the gap between pop culture and high culture and is dedicated to the creation, development, and production of vibrant original work, offbeat contemporary plays, and theatrical performance art inspired by genre fiction and other modern mythologies.

        Gandhi Brigade, Inc., dba GB Youth Media

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($28,800)

        GB Youth Media creates communities where young people build the confidence and media skills to express themselves and to promote community building, multi-cultural understanding, and the common good.

        Glen Echo Pottery, Inc.

        Glen Echo, Maryland ($18,000)

        Glen Echo Pottery teaches ceramic arts to everyone, from the tentative novice to the very experienced student. They offer opportunities for students to learn and participate in all aspects of the ceramic studio process and offer the public opportunities to view exhibitions of ceramic artwork and to observe and interact with potters practicing their craft.

        Glorystar Music Education and Cultural Foundation, dba Glorystar Children’s Chorus

        Potomac, Maryland ($17,280)

        Glorystar Children’s Chorus (GCC) provides excellent music education and choral arts to children and youth. Through a rich repertoire of Eastern and Western music, GCC promotes music appreciation and builds bridges in our diverse community.

        Inscape, Inc., dba Inscape Chamber Orchestra

        Takoma Park, Maryland ($16,2o0)

        Founded in 2004, Inscape Chamber Orchestra performs concerts that engage audiences with compelling concert experiences. Inscape also premieres and records new works by American composers.

        InterAct Story Theatre Education Association, Inc., dba InterAct Story Theatre

        Wheaton, Maryland ($16,500)

        InterAct Story Theatre is a theatre and multidisciplinary arts-in-education organization. They create meaningful, accessible, interactive theatre and arts learning experiences for kids and the people who love them, especially those who experience economic, social, or geographic barriers to equitable arts access. The organization believes that the arts help foster communication and understanding in our communities by helping us to express our ideas, hopes, emotions, and experiences when words alone are not enough.

        Kalanidhi Dance

        Bethesda, Maryland ($36,000)

        Kalanidhi Dance inspires appreciation for Kuchipudi dance through artistic excellence, creative performances, high quality educational programs, and collaborations. The organization is grounded in the belief that dance, like music, knows no geographic boundaries, linguistic barriers, racial differences, or class divisions.

        Lumina Studio Theatre, Inc.

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($32,400)

        Lumina Studio Theatre’s mission is to provide unique opportunities for young and adult actors of all levels of experience to perform Shakespeare and other classic theatre with a focus on the beauty of language in a professional setting. Lumina actors engage in a comprehensive performance-directed program of theatre arts using the techniques of Rudolf Steiner, Michael Chekhov, and Stella Adler. Rehearsal work includes in-depth vocal and character coaching and improvisation. Stage combat, live music, and dance choreography are also included as the production requires.

        Marlow Guitar International Incorporated

        Rockville, Maryland ($39,000)

        Marlow Guitar International (MGI) creates community through music by drawing people together for entertainment, education, and inspiration. MGI offers classical guitar music from around the world through performances, educational events, and outreach.

        National Capital Historical Museum of Transportation, Inc., dba National Capital Trolley Museum

        Colesville, Maryland ($14,400)

        National Capital Trolley Museum preserves and interprets the heritage of electric and interurban railways and environs for the benefit of present and future generations. The Museum acquires and manages collections of objects related to the history of electric street railways; administers real and personal property; operates an electric railway for interpretive purposes; and publishes histories of electric railways.

        New Orchestra of Washington, Inc., dba New Orchestra of Washington

        Rockville, Maryland ($18,000)

        A small chamber orchestra, New Orchestra of Washington (NOW) elevates every member to their highest potential as an individual virtuoso and an ensemble player, creating unique and engaging live performance experiences. NOW’s programming includes canonic works, commissioned pieces, and genre-bending adaptations. NOW expands and contracts to suit the needs of different repertoire and performance spaces. Founded in 2012, NOW is committed to building a vibrant community that reflects Montgomery County’s diversity and seeks out musicians who are first-tier performers with multiple skillsets.

        Peerless Rockville Historic Preservation, Ltd.

        Rockville, Maryland ($35,000)

        Peerless Rockville Historic Preservation, Ltd. is an award-winning nonprofit, community-based organization founded in 1974 to preserve buildings, objects, and information important to Rockville’s heritage. Peerless Rockville advances its goals through education, advocacy, and community involvement.

        Photoworks, Inc.

        Glen Echo, Maryland ($17,500)

        Photoworks is a photography program that offers lectures, courses, gallery exhibitions, and community outreach to enrich and broaden the lives of photographers, and students. They facilitate photographers at all levels and strive to be a preeminent photography community, to preserve traditions, and explore the frontiers of visual expression in photography.

        Silver Spring Town Center, Inc.

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($27,872)

        Silver Spring Town Center Inc. (SSTCi) educates, entertains, and inspires residents of all ages by activating public spaces with arts and cultural events that embrace the region’s diversity and build community connections.

        So What Else

        Rockville, Maryland ($18,000)

        So What Else seeks to improve the lives of children and families living in underserved communities by providing food security, access to bare necessities, and high-quality programs in literacy, athletics, and the visual and performing arts, while inspiring young people to give back to the community by creating volunteer opportunities.

        Story Tapestries, Inc.

        Germantown, Maryland ($18,750)

        Story Tapestries serves the Montgomery County community through: 1) Professional performances in storytelling, theater, dance, spoken word and other art forms in a variety of public spaces including community centers, local theaters, libraries, and schools; and 2) Workshops and in-depth training programs for adults and children to develop skills in various art forms, cultivating how to use the performing, visual, and literary arts to develop their voice, share their stories and increase their literacy, social-emotional and STEAM skills. Free and low- cost programs utilize the arts to promote access and equity.

        Sutradhar Institute of Dance & Related Arts

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($18,000)

        Sutradhar’s reaches out to communities struggling with issues of language, identity, and cultural divides, with arts programs that uplift, educate, and nourish self-dignity.

        Theatre Consortium of Silver Spring, Inc., dba Theatre Consortium of Silver Spring

        Silver Spring, Maryland ($18,000)

        The Theatre Consortium of Silver Spring manages the Silver Spring Black Box Theatre for culturally diverse resident companies and other artists, and organizations. The Theatre Consortium of Silver Spring provides offers performance space for the resident companies and other artists and organizations presenting high quality, diverse, and reasonably priced performances across disciplines.

        Victorian Lyric Opera Company

        Rockville, Maryland ($21,600)

        Victorian Lyric Opera Company (VLOC) produces high-quality performances of light operatic works and offers educational and performance opportunities for the community.

        World Dance Theater

        Bethesda, Maryland ($12,600)

        Word Dance Theater is dedicated to inviting people from all walks of life into a unique Isadora Duncan-inspired philosophy, methodology, and aesthetic of dance. Their approach blends music, theater, poetry, and visual art with holistic dance movements that unite us with the full range of our emotions and restores us to our roots: the breath, energy, strength, beauty, spirit, community, and freedom that is the birthright of all people.

        Young Artists of America, Inc., dba Young Artists of America

        North Bethesda, Maryland ($39,000)

        Young Artists of America (YAA) is a non-profit educational organization offering world-class musical theatre training to young performing artists in a professional and nurturing environment. Their students perform fully orchestrated works of music theatre in state-of-the-art venues such as the Music Center at Strathmore, where they are an Affiliate. Through the creative process, they give their students the skills and confidence to “find their voice” on the stage and in life.

        Youth Art For Healing, Inc., dba Youth Art For Healing

        North Bethesda, Maryland ($17,500)

        Youth Art For Healing brings works of art created by youth into healthcare environments to provide a sense of comfort, inspiration and healing for patients, their loved ones, and healthcare professionals.

        Zemer Chai

        Kensington, Maryland ($10,779)

        Zemer Chai (“Living Song”) is dedicated to preserving and sharing the rich musical heritage of the Jewish people at the highest level. The singers come from all walks of Jewish life, joined together in their loving commitment to keep this music alive and relevant.