Expanding Access to Arts Funding in WNY

NYSCA-Cullen Foundation

Western New York Regional Regrant Partnership



Cullen Foundation and New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) are partnering on a special re-grant program to benefit Western New York’s residents through the funding of a wide range of arts and cultural opportunities offered by nonprofit community-based organizations. A special grant cycle inviting nonprofit organizations in six (6) counties of Western New York (WNY) will encourage arts-focused applications to increase the reach and diversity of programs benefitting the residents of Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Niagara, and Wyoming counties.

The program objective is to expand New York State funding to a broader range of arts and cultural projects, nonprofit organizations, and artists previously unreached by NYSCA and its Statewide Community Regrant sites (SCR sites) which in turn will create more arts participation opportunities for WNY residents. The vision is that NYSCA and Cullen connect to effectively accelerate the rebuilding of New York State’s arts sector in WNY, helping to spur the revitalization of New York’s creative economy while providing residents with new and enriching arts programming.

In its capacity as ‘re-grant partner’, Cullen Foundation seeks to augment the amount of public funds available to WNY’s nonprofit sector while providing professional, in-kind grantmaking resources to NYSCA and the WNY community.



Any 501(c)3 nonprofit located in the six (6) WNY counties (Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Niagara, and Wyoming) that has not received NYSCA funding or SCR regrant funding in 2020, 2021 or 2022 may apply for funding for arts-related projects or programs to be completed between September 1, 2022 and August 31, 2023.

This one-time, special funding opportunity is open to nonprofits outside of NYSCA’s typical base of applicants/grantees in an effort to more widely support arts engagements throughout WNY and accelerate collaborative efforts to reach new audiences unique arts programming opportunities.

Of particular interest are arts projects that:

  • Provide new opportunities for community members’ engagement with the arts
  • Offer access to arts and cultural opportunities in otherwise underserved communities
  • Celebrate or promote the WNY region’s rich racial/cultural diversity
  • Demonstrate collaboration between the nonprofit applicant/grantee, local artists and/or arts organizations
  • Focus on providing arts experiences for previously unreached organizations and community audience members (i.e. the constituents of the nonprofit applicant)



Grant awards will vary depending on the size and scope of the project; the optimal range of requests is between $2,500 to $5,000 with a maximum award of $5,000.  Funds will be disbursed in September 2022 for grantee use from September 1, 2022 to August 31, 2023.



Applicants must be 501(c)3 organizations based in the six-county region of Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Niagara, and Wyoming counties in New York State. One request will be accepted per WNY-based nonprofit applicant. 

Please note, past and current Cullen grantees ARE eligible to apply for this grant even if they have an open grant with us; however, all applicants must meet the eligibility criteria associated with this grant.  For additional details on eligibility see Additional Eligibility & Fiscal Sponsorship Information link below under “Additional Resources”



The application cycle/process opens May 1, 2022 and is closes on at 11:59 PM on June 22, 2022. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis – apply today!

Grant decisions will be announced by August, 2022. Funds will be sent to recipients on September 1, 2022. Grantees must use the funds for approved programs and activities between September 1, 2022 and August 31, 2023.



The entire process is online. To access the grant portal click here. If you need assistance completing an application, please contact a Cullen staff member (see details below under ‘CONTACT’).





After you review and confirm the eligibility criteria in detail, if you still have questions as to your eligibility, you can confirm it by contacting Cullen Foundation staff: