Grants for Arts Organizations

To ensure a robust art and culture ecosystem for both residents and visitors to the City, Cultural Affairs offers grant programs for Santa Monica-based arts and heritage nonprofits.

Continue the Process:

Guidelines and Application for 2022-23 (Microsoft Word Document download). Submit completed applications to

Deadline: Rolling, from September to November (or until annual funds are depleted) 

Applications Available: Annually in September the week after Labor Day

Final report forms may be downloaded here.

SMMUSD final report forms may be downloaded here.

The City of Santa Monica Arts Transportation Grant Program funds public transportation to and from arts and culture destinations throughout Los Angeles County. Any Santa Monica school or nonprofit organization wishing to visit a cultural destination in L.A. County may apply. Trips must take place between October and June.

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis throughout the fall or until funds are depleted. Most of the funds are appropriated by mid-November, but cancellations do occur, so applicants are encouraged to contact the City to find out if applications are still being accepted through the winter.

This is a reimbursement program; grant funds may be used only to reimburse the costs incurred by transporting Santa Monica residents and students to and from cultural destinations, such as performing arts venues and museums. Destinations must be accessible to individuals with disabilities.

Support comes from the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s Proposition A Local Return funds. The MTA requires that program services be made available to all members of the public in an age-appropriate manner, not limited to a specific group. For example, a third-grade class trip to the Getty Museum must be reasonably prepared to accommodate any Santa Monica third-grader who requests a seat (if seats are available). All excursions approved in this program will be listed on the Cultural Affairs website with contact information so that a parent from another school, for example, may reserve a place for a child to participate in the funded activity.

Questions about this program should be directed to Nathan Birnbaum,

Applications for the 2023-25 Organizational grant Program (OSP) open at Noon on Friday, December 16th, 2022.

Deadline for submission of applications is 11:59 PM, Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Program guidelines for the 2023-25 OSP are downloadable here.

Santa Monica’s Organizational Support Program (OSP) was created in 1996 to provide multi-year support to the City’s resident nonprofit arts and heritage nonprofits. The program makes grants of up to ten percent of local organizations’ budgets. Grants are awarded after an application process, currently on a two-year cycle. Resident organizations are defined as those whose primary administrative office and primary location of programming (more than 50% of program activities) are within Santa Monica city limits. Prospective applicants must read the OSP program guidelines before beginning an application.

Organizations receiving grants are expected to:

  • Provide Santa Monica’s diverse communities with opportunities for creativity, artistic participation, and a better understanding of cultural heritage.
  • Increase and sustain world-class artistic production and exhibitions in Santa Monica. 
  • Highlight the city as an international creative center.
  • Open avenues of discourse among the public to broad topics of human creativity and learning. 

Questions? Please contact Cultural Administrator Nathan Birnbaum

The 2023-24 CAP grant program is open for applications beginning 8:00 AM, Friday, March 10th, 2023. The deadline for submissions will be 11:59 PM Monday, May 1st, 2023. Applicants must read the program's guidelines before submitting an application. Guidelines may be downloaded here.


To fill out an application, visit, navigate to "Current Programs & Applications", and choose "Community Access & Participation 2023-24." Applicants new to the system must begin by creating a profile.


Applicants who have not received a CAP grant in the past three years must attend one of the CAP informational sessions. (But all applicants are strongly encouraged to attend.)


Informational sessions will be held online on:


Saturday, April 8, 2023 @ 11:00 AM


Wednesday, April 12, 2023 @ 7:00 PM


Email to reserve a place for one of the sessions and receive a Zoom link.


New Categories for the 2023-24 CAP Application


The CAP program’s pre-pandemic categories have been restored, but the old category restrictions have been eliminated. Applicants may now submit up to two applications in one or both categories, as they choose. Applicants may not submit more than one application for the same program, however; each application must be for a different program.


Category 1: Community Access & Participation. This category supports exceptional artistic and/or heritage experiences and cultural opportunities which respond to community needs. Applicants should demonstrate a track record of high-quality work, professional management practices, and an ability to serve diverse communities. 


Category 2: Building the Future. This category is for programs that engage Santa Monica youth in activities that encourage a lifelong association with the arts or heritage/history. Programs must take place in non-classroom settings and adhere to the California's Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) standards. Applicants must demonstrate a track record of outstanding education programs, professional management practices, and an ability to serve diverse communities.


*Latino Priority. Prioritized funding is available for programs that engage Santa Monica's Latino community and/or celebrate Santa Monica's rich Latino cultural heritage. ANY application in categories 1 or 2 above may be considered Latino priority simply by checking a box on the application form. Applicants who submit two CAP applications may submit one or both of their applications with this priority checked, as they wish. 


Grant guidelines: CAP 2023-24 Grant Guidelines

Applications open: 8:00 AM, Friday, March 10, 2023

Deadline for submission: 11:59 PM, Monday, May 1, 2023

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