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United Arts Awards Mini-Grants, Arts Learning Mini-Grants & Diversity Grants

United Arts of Central Florida announced the recipients of its May cycle of Mini-Grants, Arts Learning Mini-Grants and Diversity Grants. These programs have three deadlines per year, a short application and a one-month turnaround from submission to grant decision. Two organizations were awarded Mini-Grants totaling $2,600; five organizations were awarded a total of $5,550 for the Arts Learning Mini-Grant; and three organizations received $11,500 in Diversity Grants.


United Arts reaches out to grassroots and multicultural organizations through its Mini-Grants program. Over 70% of grantees receive their first grant from United Arts through this program, and over 47% of funding goes to culturally diverse organizations.

This cycle’s grant recipients are:

ArtReach Orlando – Awarded $1,300 for Art @ ACE. In collaboration with the Boys and Girls Club in residence at ACE, ArtReach has designed a visual arts program for the 2018-2019 school year for students 2nd-5th grade. Up to 25 students will receive quality visual arts instruction once a week, creating individual and group projects. ArtReach will hold a free public show at the end of each semester to display the student art.

Central Florida Vocal Arts – Awarded $1,300 for Music of the Night Masquerade. Orlando Light Opera, a Central Florida Vocal Arts company, in collaboration with Space Coast Symphony and Opera del Sol will present a Music of the Night Masquerade on August 2-4 at The Orlando Repertory Theatre. Featuring principal singers Michelle Knight of Broadway’s Disenchanted, mezzo soprano Sarah Purser, tenor Kit Cleto and baritone Michael John Foster, this evening will include beloved musical theater and opera repertory. Interactive performances willl be provided by Opera del Sol in the lobby before the show.

Funding for the Mini-Grant period of July 1 – June 30 has been fully awarded. The next application deadline for the Mini-Grant is 5:00 p.m., August 1, 2018. The maximum grant award is $2,500 per organization per July – June period. Organizations can learn more or apply at

Arts Learning Mini-Grants

United Arts expands opportunities for arts education to the wider community through its Arts Learning Mini-Grants program. The program has been instrumental in implementing new programs for toddlers, urban youth, at-risk LGBT teens, people with varying abilities, and cancer patients. United Arts supports art for all ages.

This cycle’s grant recipients are:

Asian Cultural Association of Central Florida – Awarded $1,110 for Indian Music & Rhythm Outreach. Since 2014, the Asian Cultural Association has offered a free music therapy program for adults with intellectual disabilities. Through the art of Indian music rhythm, students learn to count beats, maintain complicated rhythm, and recognize patterns. This grant will allow expansion of the program to a second location – OCA (Opportunity, Community, Ability), and add an additional 25-30 students.

Central Florida Community Arts – Awarded $1,110 for Music Accessibility with Quest. These unique music classes allow students with disabilities enrolled at Quest to experience music at their own individual level. Throughout the class, participants have the ability to engage with music through movement, the use of percussion instruments, using their bodies as instruments, and using music as a means of relating to emotions. The goal of this offering is to teach general music concepts and, in turn, to allow music to become a form of self expression and communication. Grant funds will allow the program to expand to Quest’s Apopka campus.

Quest – Awarded $1,110 for Quest Kids Academy Music and Dance Programs. Quest will continue its arts programming focus in two areas: the art of movement and dance in partnership with Chance 2 Dance; and a music program through a partnership with Joyful Music Therapy. Both of these professional arts providers use lesson plans and help set individualized goals for students with disabilities. The objectives are to teach confidence, strengthen fine and gross motor skills as part of the children’s learning plan, and to build a love for artistic expression from a young age.

Orlando Museum of Art – Awarded $1,110 for Art With Purpose. Art with Purpose (AWP) delivers arts enrichment programming in partnership with Zebra Coalition to at-risk LGBT youth ages 13-24 who struggle with issues such as low self-esteem, inability to attend traditional schooling and, in some cases, homelessness and substance abuse. The studio art and art history instruction participants will receive is designed to help develop self-esteem, personal creativity, respect for others and leadership skills. In addition to traditional writing, participants utilize various art mediums exploring topics such as self-identity and their place in the world. A Zebra licensed mental health counselor (LMHC) attends sessions and oversees discussions. Youth will visit OMA twice annually for guided tours and to engage in a related studio art activity.

Orlando Neighborhood Improvement Corporation – Awarded $1,110 for 2018 Summer Arts Camp. ONIC’s 8-week visual and performing arts summer camp will rotate between ONIC communities with a daily schedule for all youth ages 5-17, Monday – Friday. Each day will incorporate a minimum of one arts class using Prodigy Cultural Arts’ curriculum in the form of dance, creative expression, music production, visual art, photography and drumming. Bi-weekly cultural arts field trips expose youth to artistic venues and events.

Funding for the Arts Learning Mini-Grant period of July 1 – June 30 has been fully awarded.

Diversity Grants

Diversity Grants incentivize cultural organizations to create programming which will appeal to a wide range of audiences, particularly racially and ethnically diverse communities in Central Florida. Funding is also offered for diversity plans and training. This funding is provided by a $50,000 grant from Duke Energy, awarded to United Arts to continue diversity and inclusion outreach initiatives. Grantees must engage in target marketing to diverse communities to drive attendance to the funded event and future involvement with the organization’s cultural programming. The goal is to increase awareness and participation of diverse communities in Central Florida’s arts and culture.

This cycle’s grant recipients are:

Leesburg Center for the Arts – Awarded $1,500 for Juneteenth-“Freedom Day.” Educational activities during the month of June will include:

  • Music, arts & crafts celebrating Freedom Day at Leesburg Center for the Arts on June 13;
  • 5 art activity stations in Berry Park during the annual Juneteenth Celebration on June 16, including: Freedom flags, ABAYOMI Rag Dolls, ADINKRA Symbol Stamp Fun, African Urban Rhythm Dance and African Drum; and
  • African Urban Rhythm Dance at Leesburg Center for the Arts, Mondays in June.

Orange County Regional History Center – Awarded $5,000 for Bridging Audiences. The Wells’ Built Museum of African American History and Culture and the Regional History Center, through the launch of a shared $10 ticket, encourage the cross-pollination of audiences between both museums. The museums will also host Florida Highwaymen Family Art Days on alternate second Saturdays each month.

The Winter Park Playhouse – Awarded $5,000 for Ain’t Misbehavin’: The Fats Waller Musical Show. Ain’t Misbehavin’ is a musical revue that celebrates the delightful humor and infectious spirit of Fats Waller. The professional production will feature an all African-American cast performing 30 songs he made famous during his career from the Cotton Club to Hollywood. This will be the first musical in the Playhouse’s history celebrating an African-American artist and featuring an all African-American cast.

Funding for the Diversity Grant period of July 1 – June 30 has been fully awarded. The next application deadline will be announced in September.

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