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 annual cash operating revenue and expenses of at least $50,000 for the last three completed fiscal years. Grants for FY24 will be awarded for activities occurring between July 1, 2023 and June 30, 2024.
Award amounts range from $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.
- Dates + Deadlines
- Guidelines + Eligibility
- Application + Templates
- Previous Grants Awarded
- FY23 Grantees
FY24 Important Dates
- Guidelines Published – Friday, December 23, 2022
- Letter of Intent Deadline – Friday, February 3, 2023 at 11:59 p.m.
- This deadline has passed.
- Application Deadline – Friday, March 24, 2023 at 11:59 p.m.
New 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) – April 2023
- FY22 990 and FY22 audit/financial review, if applicable, Due Date – June 1, 2023
- Award Announcement – late June 2023
- FY24 Mid-Year Report Deadline – January 31, 2024
- FY24 Final Report Deadline – July 31, 2024
- Friday, January 20, 2023 from 2:00 – 3:30 p.m.
- Thursday, January 26, 2023 from 4:00 – 5:30 p.m.
- These events have passed.
All AHCMC webinars will be hosted through the Zoom platform. Visit 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 each webinar, AHCMC grants staff review eligibility requirements and offer technical assistance for both the application process and the online grants portal.
Required Letter of Intent Materials:
- Arts/Humanities Mission Statement;
- Montgomery, MD Primary Office Address;
- AHCMC Budget Worksheet;
- IRS Letter of Determination/501(c)(3) Check;
- List of Board of Directors;
- Confirmation of at least one paid employee;
- Confirmation of at least 51% programming in Montgomery County, MD;
- Confirmation of ability to meet the 990 deadline; and
- Confirmation of ability to meet the audit/financial review deadline, if applicable.
Required Application Materials:
- Completed Narrative
- Organizational Support Materials
- Bios of Key Staff and Volunteers;
- Current Strategic Plan, if available; and
- Organizational Chart, if available.
- Financial Support Materials
- FY22 990 or letter of extension (990 must be received by AHCMC no later than June 1, 2023);
- FY22 audit or financial review or letter of extension, if applicable (audit/financial review must be received by AHCMC no later than June 1, 2023);
- Profit & Loss Statement for the most recently completed fiscal year;
- Current Fiscal Year Operating Budget with Actuals Year-to-Date;
- Current Balance Sheet or Balance Sheet for the most recently completed fiscal year; and
- Projected FY24 budget, if available.
- Programming Support Materials
- 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.
Applicant Eligibility Requirements
Read the guidelines for full eligibility requirements. An organization eligible to apply has to have met ALL the following criteria by the published application deadline and for the last three completed and consecutive fiscal years:
- 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;
- Demonstrates 501(c)(3) status as described on page 4 of the FY24 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. In-person activities must follow current COVID-19 guidelines 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.
Ready to apply? Click here to access the SM Apply application portal.
Applicants are highly encouraged to use the application templates to prepare the narrative and supplementary materials. Need to review or download your application? Access SurveyMonkey Apply (SM Apply) here: https://artsandhumanities.smapply.io/
FY24 GOS I Grant Templates:
*Know that these are templates for your reference only – all Letters of Intent, applications, and relevant materials must be submitted online through SM Apply.*
- Click here to view a PDF of the FY24 GOS I LOI Template
- Click here to download a Word document of the FY24 GOS I LOI Template
- Click here to view a PDF of the FY24 GOS I Full Application Template
- Click here to download a Word document of the FY24 GOS I Full Application Template
- Click here to download an Excel document of the AHCMC Budget Worksheet Template
FY23 General Operating Support I Grants (GOS I)
$1,034,753 awarded for July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023
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. Thirty-five organizations received FY23 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.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($16,264)
After School Dance Fund (ASDF) provides artistic, technical, and financial support for the establishment and maintenance of after-school Latin dance clubs to strengthen the social-emotional development of youth by promoting health, exercise, heritage, and unity through Latin dance education.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($42,500)
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.
Takoma Park, Maryland ($26,400)
Artivate sees the transformative power of the arts as a vehicle to enhance education, creating connections that transcend language, culture, and individual circumstances. Artivate partners with a roster of professional musicians, dancers, storytellers, theater, and visual artists, providing performances, workshops representing a wide range of artistic disciplines and cultural traditions encouraging active audience participation. Artivate provides access to the arts for all, including under-resourced communities.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($44,000)
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 in our communities. AOB provides real-world experiences in the arts and entrepreneurial training, offering youth and young adults the opportunity to learn about art, design, and business by engaging them in paid public art commissions. They recruit, train, and place young people with art and design aptitudes who are not ordinarily introduced to entry-level jobs and career paths in the creative industries.
Rockville, Maryland ($45,000)
Arts for the Aging (AFTA) engages older adults and caregivers in health improvement and life enhancement through regular participation in the multi-disciplinary arts.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($13,648)
Bel Cantanti Opera supports young opera singers through performance opportunities, offering affordable performance ticket prices to the community.
Takoma Park, Maryland ($17,220)
Cantate stimulates awareness and appreciation of sacred and secular choral music through innovative programming, creative outreach, and collaborative performances with other artists and ensembles.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($21,250)
Carpe Diem Arts inspires creative self-expression that empowers individuals, strengthens communities, and builds better futures, while also supporting the livelihoods of master teaching and performing artists who reflect the diversity of the communities they serve.
Chevy Chase, Maryland ($16,400)
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. Founded in 1981, 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.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($44,000)
ClancyWorks Dance Company increases public understanding of the arts by presenting high quality dance performance and educational programs; expands 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 nurtures leadership skills and artistic excellence in emerging artists.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($44,000)
CREATE Arts Center sparks creativity, fosters learning, empowers individuals, and facilitates community connections through the visual arts.
Takoma Park, Maryland ($42,500)
Fueled by generosity and curiosity, Dance Exchange expands who gets to dance, where dance happens, what dance is about, and why dance matters. Dance Exchange harnesses the power of creativity and inquiry through dance to connect communities, to deepen our understanding of ourselves and to foster a more embodied, resilient, and just world.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($20,400)
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.
Bethesda, Maryland ($42,500)
Flying V is redefining theatre, with the intent to invigorate and inspire 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.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($28,160)
GB Youth Media creates communities where young people build the confidence and media skills to express themselves and to promote community building, multicultural understanding, and the common good.
Glen Echo, Maryland ($20,500)
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. The organization offers the public opportunities to view exhibitions of ceramic artwork and to observe and interact with potters practicing their craft.
Potomac, Maryland ($17,100)
Glorystar Children’s Chorus (GCC) provides excellent music education and choral arts to children and youth with a rich repertoire of East Asian and Western music. GCC celebrates their community’s Asian cultural heritage and creates an inclusive and enriching learning environment for singers to build connections within the community.
Takoma Park, Maryland ($15,210)
Founded in 2004, Inscape Chamber Orchestra offers concerts that engage audiences with compelling experiences. Inscape also premieres and records new works by American composers.
Wheaton, Maryland ($22,000)
InterAct Story Theatre is a theatre and multidisciplinary arts 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 helping us to express our ideas, hopes, emotions, and experiences when words alone are not enough.
Bethesda, Maryland ($45,000)
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.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($42,500)
Lumina Studio Theatre provides unique opportunities for young actors of any level of experience who seek to perform Shakespeare, other plays of the classical repertory theatre, and modern plays that focus on the beauty of language. Lumina provides a disciplined and rigorous professional setting where actors are trained in a comprehensive, performance-focused program of theatre arts based on the techniques of Rudolf Steiner’s Creative Speech and Drama, Stella Adler, and Michael Chekhov. Programs includes in-depth vocal and character coaching, improvisation, stage-combat training, and choreography.
Rockville, Maryland ($43,152)
Marlow Guitar International (MGI) creates community through music by drawing people together for entertainment, education, and inspiration. MGI brings people together to experience classical guitar music from around the world through performances, educational events, and outreach.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($15,600)
The National Capital Trolley Museum (NCTM) preserves and interprets the heritage of electric and interurban railways while supplementing its collections with significant national and international objects to enhance its interpretive programs. NCTM 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.
Rockville, Maryland ($23,000)
New Orchestra of Washington (NOW) strives to build a world where transformative musical experience is available and accessible to all. In 2012, Artistic Director Alejandro Hernandez-Valdez from Mexico and Executive Director Grace Cho from South Korea founded NOW, believing that music can bring communities closer. NOW is guided by six values: Collaboration, Representation, Education, Advocacy, Technology, and Experimentation (CREATE).
Rockville, Maryland ($41,000)
Peerless Rockville Historic Preservation, Ltd. is a nonprofit, community-based organization founded in 1974 to preserve buildings, objects, and information about Rockville’s heritage. Peerless Rockville advances its goals through education, example, advocacy, and community involvement.
Glen Echo, Maryland ($19,500)
Photoworks is a photography program that offers lectures, courses, gallery exhibitions, and community outreach to photographers and students at all levels. Photoworks strives to be a preeminent photography community; to preserve traditions and explore the frontiers of visual expression; and to be a financially stable organization with the means to adapt to the changing photography environment.
Glen Echo, Maryland ($25,000)
The Puppet Co. presents professionally-produced puppet theater reflecting excellence in both performance and visual experience as a means to excite the public about the potential of puppetry. As a Center for Exploration of the Puppet Arts, the Puppet Co. brings professional puppetry performances to its audience along with supporting puppetry education through classes, workshops, demonstrations, publications, and exhibitions.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($29,230)
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.
Rockville, Maryland ($23,000)
So What Else seeks to improve the lives of children and families living in underserved communities by providing high-quality programs in literacy, visual and performing arts, as well as athletics, food security, and access to other bare necessities. The organization inspires young people to give back to the community by creating volunteer opportunities.
Poolesville, Maryland ($45,000)
Story Tapestries provides innovative, custom-designed performances, workshops and hands-on community and educational experiences; designing programs that develop skills, connect individuals, elevate diverse voices and celebrate youth, families, adults, and seniors. The organization strives to bring fiscally responsible, innovative, culturally sensitive programming to all generations.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($18,900)
Sutradhar in Sanskrit means ‘thread bearer,’ in the South Indian 17th Century dance theater of Kuchipudi. At Sutradhar, the kinetic arts of dance, yoga, and martial arts, as well as the allied arts of storytelling, music, painting, Tibetan mandalas, creative writing, mythology, and rhythm analysis – are taught with social relevance and an understanding of equity. Dialogue about ethnic, gender, intergenerational, environmental, and socio-cultural issues is cultivated through collaborative and interdisciplinary works, performances by the Devi Dance Theater, and outreach by the Youth Leadership group.
Silver Spring, Maryland ($32,088)
The Theatre Consortium of Silver Spring manages the Silver Spring Black Box Theatre for culturally diverse resident companies and other artists, and organizations for the enrichment of the community in and around the Silver Spring Arts and Entertainment District. Theatre Consortium of Silver Spring offers performance space for their resident companies, artists, and other arts organizations, presenting high quality, diverse, and reasonably priced performance art across disciplines.
Rockville, Maryland ($24,731)
Victorian Lyric Opera Company (VLOC) makes operetta relevant for the community.
North Bethesda, Maryland ($46,000)
Young Artists of America (YAA) provides arts education, delivering transformative, innovative, and inclusive arts programming that propels students in their personal and artistic development. YAA also offers exceptional performances to the community.
North Bethesda, Maryland ($22,000)
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.
The FY23 GOS I cycle runs from July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2023.
Important Dates Post-Application
- Mid-Year Report – January 31, 2023
- Final Report – July 31, 2023
For current FY23 grantees, all mid-year and final reports must be completed online through AHCMC’s grants portal, SurveyMonkey Apply (SM Apply). Access SM Apply here: https://artsandhumanities.smapply.io/
Need to make changes to your project? Fill out a grant change request form, available on our resources page: https://www.creativemoco.com/find-opportunities/resources/