Artist Grants

Creative Entrepreneur
Accelerator Program

Based on our ongoing Racial Equity work and a workgroup of local arts leaders and liaisons, the CAYC has created a new format of distribution of resources to artists in the region.

Program Funding

In partnership with the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the York County Economic Alliance (YCEA), the Creative Accelerator program offers small business consulting, creative mentorship and grants for artists and creators in York, Adams, Franklin, and Fulton Counties.

Resources Available

  • Pairing with a mentor from Susquehanna SCORE, Small Business Development Center, YCEA or CAYC Navigator
  • Small Business Workshops in-person and online through YCEA and SCORE
  • Referrals to art organizations, event organizers, or internship opportunities
  • $500-$2,000 in grant funding


How To Get Started

You can reach Rita Whitney at (717) 812-9255, Ext. 1003 or with any questions about the application process.

Remember, when creating your Foundant profile:

  • Business Title: Enter OWNER or SOLE PROP
  • Executive Officer: As an individual artist, answer YES
  • Additional Executive Officer: LEAVE BLANK

Create Your Online Account

Set up your Cultural Alliance Profile using Foundant

Submit Letter of Interest

A simple form which lets us know who you are and what types of resources you are looking for


Connect with Your Navigator

Establish your goals, assess ideas and get help with additional resources


Additional Information

Artist grant applications are rolling.  An artist may begin the process by filling out an LOI at any time, and the Creative and Navigator work together to determine next steps.  If a Creative comes to the Navigator from the beginning with a fully formed and achievable idea, the process can move very quickly.  If there is a business plan to be written or additional education or resources needed, the Navigator will support through that process for the amount of time it takes, including up to 3, one-hour meetings.

The final grant approval timeline is tied to the Cultural Alliance Board of Directors monthly meetings.

NOTE: Due to availability of funds, applicants who submit in the last quarter of 2023 may need to wait until 2024 for funding.

To be eligible to receive creative entrepreneur accelerator program resources, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Reside in York, Adams, Fulton or Franklin County for at least one year prior to application.
  • Be in good standing with all reporting requirements for any previously-funded CAYC grants.
  • Have a gross annual revenue (total amount of money paid to you in a calendar year) of less than $200,000.
  • Funding priority will be given to creative entrepreneurs/artists who identify as Black, Indigenous, or people of color (“BIPOC”) and those who are located in and whose work benefits low-income communities as defined by the Small Business Administration.
  • Artists/creators who work at partner organizations of the CAYC may apply with opportunities for their own creative and/or business skill development unrelated to the work they do for the organization.

Resources and grants are not available to the following individuals or organizations:

  • Individuals enrolled in a degree or certificate program in the arts at the time of application.
  • Previous grant recipients cannot receive funding more than once within a calendar year
  • Members of CAYC staff


Specific examples of eligible expenses if grant funding is awarded include:

  • Travel, transportation, and lodging costs including food
  • Registration fees
  • Tuition costs for a course outside of a degree or certificate program
  • Shipping costs for artwork, supplies, and other materials
  • Printing costs and materials
  • Web hosting and fees associated with website development
  • Professional consultant fees and services
  • Purchase of equipment
  • Studio/rehearsal/retail space rent
  • Project-based work or costs related to the creation of artwork
  • Professional fees for workshops, consultants, and career coaching
  • Participation in events, trade shows, festivals, etc. that offer access to audience and revenue generation potential
  • Research and development
  • Marketing and promotion
  • Reasonable fees for supporting/collaborating artists

Examples of expenses not eligible to be covered by Professional Development Grants:

  • Tuition for coursework within a degree or certificate program
  • Work that has already been created or activities that have already taken place
  • Ongoing work or business expenses
  • Activities that have a religious purpose.
  • Payments to lobbyists
  • A full- or part-time staff position
  • Medical fees and most legal or accounting fees
  • Food and hospitality costs

Post Grant Guidelines

Grantees are required to acknoledge the Cultural Alliance where appropriate.

  • Tagging the Cultural Alliance of York County in social media posts about the opportunity for which funds were granted
  • Usage of the Cultural Alliance logo on printed promotional materials
  • Usage of the Cultural Alliance logo on digital platforms including websites
  • Announcement of the grant receipt before or after performances relevant to the opportunity
  • Any creative way the artist may be able to include a brief message about the Cultural Alliance

Promotion of the Cultural Alliance grant funding helps to spread the work about our available resrouces. 

Meet the Navigators

Leaders in York County’s creative community hired by the Cultural Alliance to connect with artists and help distribute resources deeper, and more equitably into the community than previously possible due to the CAYC’s small staff. Navigators have experience, expertise, and connections in their field, and in many cases, are people who were already at work mentoring and connecting creatives.

Jess McPherson

York County, PA

Susan Scofield

York, PA

Andrew Smith

Hanover, PA

Artist & Creator’s Experiences

“In the time that I have had with my navigator I have been able to identify clear goals, start writing out a traditional business plan to back up my current sales plan and have reviewed my current website to identify weaknesses and strengths.”

“Sometimes goals and dreams can be very hefty and realistically out of reach. The process of working with the Navigator helped me to realize my ambitions are attainable and are already becoming recognizable in the community regardless of the outcome of this grant opportunity.”

“Susan was really helpful in showing me what I do and don’t need in the present moment in order to grow as an artist and business woman.”

Grants Announced for 8 Hanover Area Events

Image: Gray Cloud Singers, set to perform at the Hanover Diversity Festival York, PA – The Cultural Alliance of York County is pleased to announce the recipients of Welcoming Communities, Hanover.  In partnership with Main Street Hanover, and supported by the William...