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Alliance for California Traditional Arts

The Alliance for California Traditional Arts (ACTA) promotes and supports ways for cultural traditions to thrive now and into the future by providing advocacy, resources and connections. ACTA invigorates community-rooted traditional cultural practices through grants and technical assistance. Guided by the principles of cultural democracy, diversity and equity, ACTA bridges cross-sector links between statewide efforts in culture and social justice, health and wellness, education, civic participation and youth engagement. It also provides effective, low-cost, easy-to-implement methods for groups to raise funds from within their own communities.

Through the Community Leadership Project, ACTA provides grants that build the sustainability of grassroots organizations working in the traditional arts and serving low-income people and communities of color. ACTA's existing social justice, youth development and immigrant empowerment work aligns well with the CLP initiative.

Regions Served: San Joaquin Valley
Fresno, Kern, Kings, Madera, San Joaquin, Stanislaus and Tulare counties
(Phase 1 served Central Coast and San Joaquin Valley)

Phase 1 (2009-2012): $410,000
Phase 2 (current): $1 million

Program Details:
During the first phase of the Community Leadership Project, the Alliance for California Traditional Arts awarded core operating grants to eight organizations. This diverse group reflected the multi-cultural spectrum of the Central Coast and the San Joaquin Valley: Latino, South East Asian, African American, Native American and Indigenous Mexicans. ACTA provided these organizations with training and consulting in grassroots fundraising and program planning. Also, in 2010, ACTA offered free fundraising workshops to all folk and traditional arts organizations in the San Joaquin Valley and Central Coast, even if they weren’t eligible to apply for grant funds.

Now, in Phase 2, ACTA awarded grants to allow seven small and midsized organizations to become financially sustainable. ACTA is helping its community grantees put in place sound financial management practices. It is providing technical assistance on fundraising and building lasting revenue streams. And it is creating a community of practice to help grantees learn from each other. ACTA expects that grantees will be able to operate effectively over the long term by asking for donations from people of all income levels in their own communities. In this way, ACTA is helping to achieve the Community Leadership Project’s goal of increasing the sustainability of community grantees while also challenging conventional wisdom about the viability of small organizations.

Read more about the Alliance for California Traditional Arts program on our Highlights page.

Grantees Funded:
Phase 1 (2009-2012)

Phase 2 (current)

Project Launched: Spring 2010


Project Contact:
Nayamin Martinez
(559) 237-9812