Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to some of the most frequently received questions by our Grants Program Managers.

ELIGIBILITY AND GUIDELINES: RESIDENCY & STUDENTS

ELIGIBILITY AND GUIDELINES: SATELLITE OFFICE IN TORONTO

WRITING ABOUT YOUR WORK

BUDGET AND MONEY MATTERS

TAC GRANTS ONLINE

PROJECT GRANTS

ACCESSIBILITY EXPENSES

SUBMITTING YOUR APPLICATION & RESULTS

FINAL REPORTS

GRANT ALLOCATIONS

YOUR  PROGRAM MANAGER

JURIES, COMMITTEES & THE ASSESMENT PROCESS

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

OTHER ARTS COUNCILS & RESOURCES


ELIGIBILITY AND GUIDELINES: RESIDENCY & STUDENTS

I just moved to Toronto. Can I apply?

  • No. You must be a resident of Toronto for at least one year prior to the deadline, and live and work in Toronto for at least eight months of the year. However, this rule does not apply to those applying to the Newcomer and Refugee Artist Mentorship program. We do not accept post office box numbers as evidence of residency.

I was an artist in my home country. I’ve been in Toronto for four years and have an application pending for permanent residence as a refugee claimant. Am I eligible to apply?

  • Yes, Toronto Arts Council was the first funding body to accept applications from people seeking Permanent Resident status. Protected Persons (approved refugee claimants) are also eligible. You may be requested to provide documentation about your claim.

I was a Toronto resident for many years, but a year ago I moved outside of the City. Can I apply?

  • No. You must be a resident of Toronto when applying for a grant. You are eligible if you live and work in Toronto for at least 8 months a year.

With regards to collaborative projects and collectives; are all applicants required to be residents of Toronto?

  • Not all members of a collective or participants in a collaborative project have to be residents of Toronto. The ratio of required Toronto residents for a collective is 1 to ½. This means that the majority of the collective must be Toronto residents. For example, in a collective with two individuals, both members must be Toronto residents. In a group of three, one member may be a non-resident.

I have recently completed High School and I have no plans to continue my education. Can I apply?

  • Yes. Please see Eligibility & Guidelines for your specific discipline / program.

I am an undergraduate student. Can I apply?

  • No. Undergraduate students are not eligible to apply for a grant.

I’m currently doing my MFA / Masters Degree in Toronto. Can I apply?

  • Yes, professional artists pursuing graduate studies may apply but not for work related to your program of study.

For more information on Eligibility, visit the TAC Eligibility Checklist

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ELIGIBILITY AND GUIDELINES: SATELLITE OFFICE IN TORONTO

My company isn't based in Toronto but just opened a Toronto office. Can we apply?

  • No. Having a satellite office in Toronto does not automatically make an organization eligible for TAC funding.  Organizations with a regional Toronto office must have operated in the City of Toronto for at least one year prior to the deadline.  We do not accept post office box numbers as evidence of office location.

For more information on Eligibility, visit the TAC Eligibility Checklist

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WRITING ABOUT YOUR WORK

Can I submit my application in French? Puis-je soumettre ma demande en français?

  • Le Conseil des Arts de Toronto accepte les subventions présentées en français. Veuillez noter que les comités d'évaluation se tiennent en anglais. Lorsqu’une demande de subvention est présentée en français, le Conseil s’assure qu’au moins un évaluateur bilingue siège sur le comité. De plus, le Conseil fournit une traduction écrite de la demande de subvention à tous les membres du comité. Veuillez communiquer avec le ou la responsable des subventions de votre programme pour plus d’informations. 

What tense should I use?

  • It is recommended that you write in the first person. It is your project you are writing about, so use your own voice to describe it.

Should my writing be formal?

  • It is not necessary to use a formal tone when writing your application. However, it is important to use clear language and simple words so that the jury can understand your proposal / project.  

Are there specific things the jury wants to hear?

  • Every jury is different, and therefore there is no clear indication of what the jury is looking for. However, it is important to let the jury know why it is essential to fund your project. If you are unclear about what to include in your proposal, ask a TAC Program Manager for advice. Our Program Mangers are here to help you, so give them a call.

I have two great projects that I’m working on. Can I apply for both?

  • No, you can only apply for one project per deadline. If you are unsure which one might have a better chance phone the Program Manager to discuss your application. In addition to your project grant, you may apply for one Strategic Initiative grant per calendar year.

How specific do I need to be when describing my project?

  • It is a good idea to provide a clear estimate of what your project is going to look like so that the jury and the board knows what they are assessing and approving. Your estimate indicates what you expect will result with the completion of your project. The jury understands that plans may change; an estimated 20 minute film may turn out to be 23 minutes. Individuals, organizations and collectives who have received funding for a project that has resulted in something very different from what was proposed will need to contact the Program Manager to discuss the implications this has for funding.

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BUDGET AND MONEY MATTERS

The grant I’m applying for requires a budget. What happens if pending funds from other sources fall through?

  • If you do not receive expected funds from other sources, this does not affect your TAC grant application / TAC funding.

I’ve received a TAC grant. What can I spend the money on?

  • Depending on the funding program, grants are intended to cover the direct costs of creation, production, operations, and related expenses. Read the application carefully to understand what expenses are eligible.

I have received a TAC grant. Will I receive a T4A tax receipt for my income taxes?

  • Yes. Grant recipients will receive a T4A tax receipt the following January or February after grants funds have been issued.

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TAC GRANTS ONLINE

When using TAC Grants Online, can I leave the application unfinished and return to it later?

  • Yes. Your application will remain in draft form until you hit submit. You can return to your draft application at any time.

What file size is required when uploading support material?

  • This varies with each discipline. It is advised that you check your program application guidelines for recommended file sizes.

I am trying to upload my CV, but TAC Grants Online is not accepting it. Why?

  • When uplading files, make sure your files are in the right format. For example, CV's must be uploaded in PDF format.

I am working on an application, and it requires a date range for my project. What is an appropriate date range?

  • For most programs, you have two years to complete your project. The start date may begin as soon as three months after the application deadline, and can end within two years after that. The dates of each granting period can be found on the Deadlines page.

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PROJECT GRANTS

May I exhibit  / execute my Toronto Arts Council funded work outside of Toronto?

  • Different guidelines apply to each funding program. Project grants are dissemination grants, which means that the work must be shown in Toronto. Grants to individuals are creation grants, which means that the work produced can be shown anywhere. 

Are workshops applicable for project grants programs?

  • Yes. You may apply for a project grant if your project involves hosting workshops.

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ACCESSIBILITY EXPENSES

Our project involves artists who are Deaf or have a disability - can we apply for additional funds to help cover accessibility costs for these artists?

  • Yes.  Projects involving Deaf artists and artists with disabilities may apply for an additional TAC grant by completing the Accessibility Expenses section of the application and including the requisite information in their budget.  TAC Accessibility grants are available in applications to TAC Arts Discipline and Strategic project programs, including programs for individual artists.

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SUBMITTING YOUR APPLICATION & RESULTS

Do I need to send TAC a hardcopy of my application?

  • No. TAC no longer requires that you send us hard copies of your application. Everything is submitted and reviewed electronically via TAC Grants Online.

Will I be notified that TAC has received my application once it is submitted?

  • Yes. TAC’s online grants application server TAC Grants Online will send you a confirmation email once you have submitted your application. The email will be sent to the email address you used when registering for TAC Grants Online.

When will I get the results?

  • Applicants will be notified when the results are ready via email approximately three months after the closing date. Applicants will be required to log-in to TAC Grants Online to view their results. Results are not released over the telephone.

Does Toronto Arts Council own my work if I get a grant?

  • No. TAC does not own any part of the work it funds through its grants programs.

My application did not get accepted. Is there somewhere where I can get feedback?

  • The Program Manager for your discipline is available to discuss your application. Keep in mind that jury deliberations are confidential and comments made during the proceedings will not be released. However, the Program Manager can explain the process and let you know if your grant was complete and clear.

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FINAL REPORTS

I received a grant a few years ago and am not sure if I sent in a report. Does it matter? I did complete the project.

  • Yes, it matters. As part of the conditions of receiving public money you are requested to send in a final report. You will not be able to apply for another grant until we receive all outstanding final reports. Final reporting is an important tool for TAC to evaluate our programs and advocate for increased funding.

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GRANT ALLOCATIONS

How many grants are awarded?

  • The number of grants awarded varies depending on TAC’s budget, and the amount of applications received every term.

Can I access a list of all grants awarded over the past year?

I heard that the TAC’s budget was increased in 2013. Has more money been allocated for grants?

Yes. With an increase in budget, Toronto Arts Council has introduced new funding programs, partnerships, and more funds are now available for grants to artists and organizations. To view the impact of TAC’s increased funding, view our 2013 Annual Report.

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YOUR PROGRAM MANAGER

What is the role of the Program Manager?

  • TAC Program Managers facilitate the application process. This includes advising individuals or organizations about how to apply, ensuring that applications meet the funding criteria, and facilitating the assessment process.  Program Managers attend arts events and participate in outreach initiatives to publicize grant programs. 

Do Program Managers sit on the Board of Directors or the Jury?

  • No. The role of the Program Manager is to assist applicants, and to aid the Jury during the adjudication process. Program Managers do not sit on the Jury, and therefore do not participate in adjudications. Similarly, Program Managers do not sit on the Board of Directors, and therefore are not responsible for approving grant recommendations.

Read more about TAC’s Program Managers by visiting Our Team

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JURIES, COMMITTEES & THE ASSESMENT PROCESS

How does the assessment process work?

  • Depending on the program, TAC grants are assessed by either a jury or committee of independent practicing artists and arts professionals. After reading all grant applications within each program deadline, each jury and committee meets as a group to discuss, score and award grant applications in a rigorous process facilitated by the Program Manager. The discussions that occur during assessments are kept confidential. Grant recommendations are then made to the Board of Directors.

How are jurors chosen?

  • No two juries are ever the same. Juries are made up of artists and professionals that have a variety of expertise in their discipline, and are chosen to reflect the variety of applications received in each granting term. Jury members are selected to reflect a balance of gender, cultural diversity, and stage of career. When selecting jurors, TAC ensures that issues of conflict of interest are avoided. 

How many individuals sit on the jury?

  • The number of individuals that sit on a jury or committee varies by discipline and program. The number of applications submitted varies with each program, and the size of the jury reflects this. Juries can have as few as four individuals, and as much as ten.

I am interested in becoming a member of the jury. How can I be considered for the position?

  • If you are interested in becoming a juror, contact the Program Manager of your discipline of expertise. It is not guaranteed that you will be invited to sit in a jury after you have expressed interest.

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BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Who is on the Board of Directors?

  • Toronto Arts Council’s volunteer board and committees are made up of artists, other arts professionals and arts supporters. To guarantee accountability, City Council appoints five of its members to Toronto Arts Council’s 29 member Board of Directors. To view a list of current board members, visit Our Board of Directors.

I would like to be on the Board of Directors. How often does TAC accept new board members?

  • New board members are accepted once a year. TAC puts out a call for Board Directors in the Fall. Nominations are approved at the Annual General Meeting.

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OTHER ARTS COUNCILS & RESOURCES

Is there any connection between Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council, and the Canada Council for the Arts?

  • All three funding councils share CADAC, but apart from this they share no connection. Toronto Arts Council is funded by the City of Toronto, whereas the Ontario Arts Council is provincially funded, and the Canada Council for the Arts is federally funded. Everything from the staff, Board, the application processes and more are all independent to each council.

Can I apply to different funding arts councils at the same time?

  • Yes. There are no restrictions preventing you from applying to various arts councils at the same time.

Is there a hierarchy with regards to receiving grants from the three arts councils? Should I apply to a TAC grant first before applying to Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council for the Arts?

  • No. You may apply to any arts council at any time in your career.

Are there resources available that can assist me in preparing my application?

  • Yes. Our Program Managers are available to discuss your ideas and projects and can assist you in determining what grant program you should apply for. However, there are other Ontario and Toronto-based organizations that can further assist you in such things as preparing your application, administrative, or capacity-building initiatives. Visit our External Resources page for a list to get you started.

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Do you have any questions not mentioned here about our programs? Please contact our Program Managers