Needham Cultural Council

Welcome to the Needham Cultural Council

The Needham Cultural Council provides funding for a variety of programs in the Arts, Humanities and Interpretive Sciences. For more information on the Council, or to learn about applying for funding, please review the following information or contact:

Annette DerSarkisian
Co-Chair, Needham Cultural Council

Phone: 781/449-3830


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General Information and Guidelines for Applicants

The Needham Cultural Council (NCC) is a town-appointed agency of volunteers whose purpose it is to promote and maintain the vitality of cultural resources within the Needham community and to support programs that promote excellence, access, educational opportunities, diversity and appreciation of diversity in the arts, humanities, and interpretive sciences. Through distribution of grant money made available by the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC), our Local Cultural Council funds a diverse cross-section of established community programs and artists of recognized cultural value while encouraging and supporting new programs. Two types of grants are funded: Local Cultural Council Grants and PASS Grants.

Local Cultural Council Grants are awarded to support community cultural projects. Grant applications are evaluated by the NCC in terms of artistic or creative merit; benefit to the cultural life of Needham; project design; qualifications, dedication and accomplishments of the individuals and organizations involved; physical accessibility of any facilities being used; community support and involvement; and financial need. Priority will be given to locally based non-profit arts and cultural organizations, to local individual artists, and to first time funding of programs.

PASS Grants - The PASS Program funds cultural field trips for children by subsidizing the cost of admission to attend programs in the arts, humanities and interpretive sciences. Approved programs include performances, exhibits, art and history museums, science and nature centers, and other educational tours.  Teachers, administrators, parent organizations, neighborhood centers or civic organizations, and non-school related youth service organizations can apply for PASS Grants.

 Criteria for application for PASS funds:

 Tickets for PASS events must be purchased in advance by the applicant, who is later reimbursed by the local cultural council that approved the application. Needham Cultural Council does not fund transportation costs associated with PASS events.

 The annual grant cycle begins after the beginning of the stateís fiscal year when the Massachusetts Cultural Council announces the share of funds to be allocated to each community. Deadline for filing an application is normally October 15. Notice of the deadline is published in the local newspapers. Applications and pertinent information are available in the Selectmanís Office in Needham Town Hall, at the Needham Public Library and in all Needham schools. The NCC reviews and votes on all applications in a public meeting held in November. Applicants will be notified of the decision within four weeks of the voting meeting.  All grant applications and funding recommendations are sent to the Massachusetts Cultural Council by Dec. 15. MCC reviews the applications and makes the funds available to the Town of Needham early in the next calendar year.  Payments to grant recipients are made on a reimbursement basis only after the project is completed.

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