IBMA Foundation announces 2022 grant application deadlines

The IBMA Foundation, the educational and philanthropic arm of the International Bluegrass Music Association, has announced that the deadline for their annual project grants is December 1, 2021. Each year the Foundation distributes roughly $14,000 to non-profit entities with a 501(c)(3) status or qualified government agencies, like public schools and colleges.

Applications in the form of a Google doc can be accessed on the Foundation web site. Completed forms must be received by the deadline to be considered, and the application requests a good deal of information, so if your agency or organization is interested in submitting, it’s best not to wait too much longer to get started.

As an example of the sorts of projects approved for these project grants, here are the ones funded this year:

  • The Archbold Music Commission; Industrial Strength Bluegrass: An Evening with Joe Mullins & the Radio Ramblers; Archbold, OH
  • Birthplace of Country Music Museum, Pick Along! Summer Camps; Bristol, VA/TN
  • Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Virtual Bluegrass in the Schools & Assembly; Owensboro, KY
  • Ferrum College, Appalachian Instrument Library; Ferrum, VA
  • Georgia Elementary and Middle School, Bluegrass Intensive Middle School Unit; Georgia, VT
  • Minnesota Bluegrass & Old Time Music Association, Grass Seeds at Fall Jam and Winter Weekend; Minneapolis, MN
  • Queen Bee Music Association, Queen Bee’s Kids Bluegrass Camp; Santa Fe, NM
  • Wintergrass Music Festival, Pocketgrass Youth Academy Club with Mr. Joe and the Youth Orchestra; Bellevue, WA and virtual

The deadline for the Foundation’s Arnold Shultz Fund grants is January 31, 2022. These are funded to support activities that increase participation by people of color, especially young people, in bluegrass music. Priority is given to programs or individuals committed to the inclusion of underrepresented populations learning about and how to play bluegrass.

The 2021 recipients were:

  • BASEArizona and Jam Pak Band, BanJam 2021; Chandler, AZ
  • Bluegrass Pride and Decolonizing the Music Room, Juneteenth: A Rainbow Revival; San Francisco, CA and Fort Worth, TX
  • Dancing with the Spirit, Bluegrass Song Videos & Curriculum for Alaskan Village Schools; Fairbanks, AK
  • Nokosee Fields, recording project; Lafayette, LA
  • Louisville Folk School, Black Voices in Kentucky Music History; Louisville, KY
  • NorthStar Church of the Arts, Country Soul Songbook; Durham, NC
  • Stephen Wang, guitar lessons; Los Gatos, CA
  • Tray Wellington, audio and visual gear upgrade; Johnson City, TN

The application for the Arnold Shultz Fund grants can also be found online.

All of the monies granted by the IBMA Foundation each year are funded by donations and planned giving by those with an interest in seeing the teaching of bluegrass music continue on through multiple generations. Foundation staff have the ability to research these grant requests and choose ones that merit consideration, something few well-meaning donors have the time or resources to accomplish. This model has worked quite well, and ongoing donations are always welcome.

Information on donations of any size can be found on the Foundation web site.

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About the Author

John Lawless

John had served as primary author and editor for The Bluegrass Blog from its launch in 2006 until being folded into Bluegrass Today in September of 2011. He continues in that capacity here, managing a strong team of columnists and correspondents.