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Arts & Culture Neighborhood Recovery Grant

For Pioneer Square and Chinatown International District

Applications are now CLOSED. 

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James E. King Jr. MAED (Executive Director)
James has more than 15 years of experience coordinating various community-led stewardship projects throughout the United States. James graduated from Antioch University Seattle with a B.A. majoring in Urban Ecology; Leadership and Sustainable Business; Global and Social Justice. Graduate with his MAEd in Urban Environmental Education (’18) held at Antioch University Seattle. James is from Atlanta, GA and currently lives in South Seattle.
Sylvia Hadnot (she/them) is a multicultural educator who brings real-world knowledge and experience into her educational endeavors. Sylvia has performed jazz piano at the Triple Door and the Paramount, among other jazz houses. She launched her own benefit events company at age 22 to support local artists in the city. She has written youth curricula for social-emotional health, college and career readiness, and environmental justice. Between all of her activities and work, Sylvia also found the time to complete a Master’s in Education, focusing on Anti-Racist and Urban Environmental Education.
Che Wong re-joined Craft3 in August of 2017 and is our Senior Business Lender - Equitable Lending Program Manager. Che is responsible for targeted outreach to increase access to capital to underserved communities, specifically entrepreneurs of color and those owned by women, veterans and immigrants.
She brings with her over 13 years of experience in the Community Development Finance industry. She has worked previously for Craft3 as a Business Lender and just prior to re-joining Craft3, Che was a Senior Loan Officer with Mercy Corps Northwest.
Olson Kundig
Apr 2000 - Sep 202121 years 6
months Greater Seattle Area
Principal, with a focus on refined
design solutions across several
Erin Goodman SODO BIA
Executive Director
A Seattle native, Erin came to the SODO BIA from the U District Partnership where she administered the U District BIA and produced the annual U District StreetFair. With a Master’s in Public Administration, Erin is committed to being an ardent advocate for SODO businesses and assisting them in developing a vibrant business district in SODO that is Safe, Clean and Moving.
Request for Proposals
Information& Instructions
Arts & Culture Neighborhood Recovery Grant

in South Downtown
Request for Proposal Information and Instructions

Read the following carefully before applying for this grant


The Arts and Culture Neighborhood Recovery Program is a City of Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS)-funded program to provide grants for arts and cultural events/activations in neighborhoods through community-based Lead Organizations. There are 14 Lead Organizations focused on neighborhoods or communities throughout Seattle. 

Cultural events, experiences, and spaces provide the reason for people to gather, share identify, and build community which are ever more critically important during the current COVID pandemic and recovery process. This program seeks to support recovery efforts through collaboration, equity, resiliency, and safety in alignment with the City of Seattle’s vision of One Seattle. 


The Pioneer Square Chinatown International District CPDA (dba Historic South Downtown (HSD)) was selected as the Lead Organization for Pioneer Square and Chinatown-International District. HSD is sub-contracting to neighborhood-based organizations and small businesses to carry out inclusive and creative arts and culture endeavors that further the city’s pandemic recovery process.

These activations/events seek to reach underserved communities and audiences and those most impacted by COVID-19, in particular, BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color), low-income, and under-served communities.  Activations/events should seek to rebuild and assist in arts and culture recovery; events do not need to be entirely new events.


The total amount of funding available through Historic South Downtown is $85,000, intended to be split between Pioneer Square and the Chinatown International District. Awards will be made to successful applicants from $10,000 to $25,000.


HSD was created by the Washington state legislature in 2007, RCW 43.167, as the state’s first Community Preservation and Development Authority. We work to preserve, restore, and promote the past, present, and future of Seattle's Pioneer Square (PSQ) and Chinatown International District (CID) neighborhoods.

HSD pursues its mission through advocacy in partnership with other neighborhood stakeholders and through a unique grantmaking program focusing on neighborhood self-determination and local control. By statute, our 13-member board is comprised of representatives from specific sectors in each neighborhood, who work together to define HSD’s values and priorities for funding and advocacy.


Applicants shall be either:

  • Non-profit organizations (arts and culture, and others) focused on events/activations within the designated neighborhood or community;

  • Small businesses with a City of Seattle business license, however, a small business who is a sole proprietor can apply but must collaborate with other individual artists or others for the proposed project;

  • For the purposes of this grant, “small business” is defined by RCW 39.26.010(22) as: an in-state business, including a sole proprietorship, corporation, partnership, or other legal entity, that: (a) Certifies, under penalty of perjury, that it is owned and operated independently from all other businesses and has either: (i) Fifty or fewer employees; or (ii) A gross revenue of less than seven million dollars annually as reported on its federal income tax return or its return filed with the department of revenue over the previous three consecutive years; or (b) Is certified with the office of women and minority business enterprises under chapter 39.19 RCW.

  • Applicants should have a history and track record of direct connection to the arts and cultural life of Pioneer Square, the CID or both neighborhoods.

  • Applicants do not need to be located within the boundaries of Pioneer Square or the CID (Current district maps C-ID and Pioneer Square). However, the event supported by ARTS Neighborhood Recovery Grant must occur within one or both communities.

  • Activations/events must be broadly advertised and accessible to the public. Free event admission is preferred, or using a low-cost or sliding fee scale, and events should be accessible to those with a variety of physical capabilities;

  • Applicants must have capacity to successfully manage the proposed project, prepare regular reporting, and complete final reports due no later than September 8, 2023;

  • Applicants must be either a non-profit organization or have an active fiscal sponsorship agreement. Learn more about fiscal sponsorships.

  • All events shall provide event liability insurance and name Pioneer Square Chinatown International CPDA and City of Seattle as additionally insured;

  • Awarded programs will be required to follow all current Federal, State, County, and City COVID-19 mandates and protocols.  More information and in other languages are available on the City of Seattle COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement website.

  • Applicants can apply to more than one Lead Organization for this city-wide program. However, successful applicants may receive funding from only one Lead Organization (see list of other Lead Organizations at end of this document).




Funds May Be Used For:

  • Costs directly related to event/activation (staffing, equipment rental, paying performers, materials, etc.)

  • Examples of public activations or events:

    • A series of performances at an indoor or outdoor venue

    • Temporary public art or lighting (permit/approval must be secured prior to award)

    • Festivals, fairs, or public events (funds may be targeted for specific part of a larger event)

    • Art exhibits

    • Art or cultural workshops or classes

Funds May Not Be Used For:

  • Events held outside Seattle city limits

  • Capital improvements or purchase of equipment

  • Travel costs (local transportation costs for performers, for example, are ok)

  • Religious events at which participants will be subject to proselytization

  • Programming in which fundraising is the primary purpose


Applicant’s project descriptions will be scored as follows:

  • Project Description (20 points): Describe a clear, well-conceived event or activation that promotes arts participation and community relations through meaningful and unique experiences. Describe the setting, and how this project demonstrates an authentic relationship to neighborhood or cultural community in South Downtown.

  • Community Impact (20 points): The project plan clearly describes meaningful efforts to be inclusive, foster community, encourage participation, reach a diverse audience, and provides accessibility for people of all physical capacity, especially for those most impacted by the pandemic, structural racism and oppression.

  • Feasibility (15 points): The organizing group/individual has a proven track-record of presenting this and/or other event(s) or otherwise demonstrates capacity to successfully execute the project; understanding of permitting requirements, if any; evidence of community involvement and support.

  • Organizational capacity (10 points): administrative ability to complete reporting and invoicing.

  • Data Collection Plan (10 points): Applicant commits to collect of quantitative and qualitative metrics, and provides a clear, well-conceived, and feasible plan to ensure collection of this data.

  • Budget (10 points): Clear realistic budget for the event. Please download our budget template.

  • Proposed Scope of Work (15 points): Applicant provides a clear description of the deliverables that will be achieved with the funding provided.

Data Collection

Applicants will be provided with a required set of quantitative and qualitative measures, and a set of voluntary quantitative and qualitative measures. These measures will become part of the applicants reporting forms (reports are also to be done through HSD’s portal)

Required Quantitative Measures:

  • # of cultural workers (including Artists, Arts Admin and other non-artist staff) hired/paid

  • % of BIPOC artists and cultural workers paid/hired

  • # of in-person Performances/Exhibit days/Events

  • # of in-person Audience Served/ppl benefitting

  • # of artists participating

  • # of paid artists

  • # of free tickets

  • # of Public (in person) Programming Hours

Additional Qualitative Measures (select all that apply):

  • # of organizations supported

  • # of Virtual Public Program Hours

  • # of virtual audience served/ppl benefitting

  • # of youth served in person

  • # of youth serve (virtual)

  • % of (paid) community/staff represent communities most impacted by COVID,

  • # of positive response to programming,

  • # of unique web downloads and/or reshares of resource-sheet content,

  • # of community partners/orgs engaged

Required Qualitative Information:

  • Project Description/Impact/Reflections narrative EX:

    • Did this project have any particular impact(s) on you, or your organization/group? Did it create any unexpected opportunities? If so, what were they?

    • How were these funds used to support the health/resilience of your organization/community /staff/etc?

  • Community Access/ Engagement/ Impact/Public Benefit narrative EX:

    • Please describe how these funds specifically benefited artists, creative workers, and/or community in Seattle.

    • Please describe as specifically as possible the community served. Note any special audiences you reached. Any audiences new to you?

    • Describe any special efforts to make your project/event accessible?

    • Share a story or something that stands out to you as demonstrating the community impacts of your project.

Optional Qualitative Information (select all that you agree to submit)

  • Photos

  • Quotes

  • Anecdotes

Demographic data (as available) including race, gender, age, etc. of the following participants:

  • Individuals paid through NRG funding

  • Participating/subcontracted organizations

  • Community/Audience benefiting from projects/events


  • RFP Opens:  12 AM PST, January 30, 2023

  • Applicant Conference: January 30, 2023, 10 am to 12 pm

  • HSD Staff available to answer questions

    • Drop-in hours at Hing Hay Coworks, 409BMaynard Ave. S.

Tuesdays beginning January 31 to February 28, 10 AM to 12:30 PM

Thursdays beginning February 2 to March 2, 2 PM to 4:30 PM

Please ring the bell to gain access to HSD’s office. Masks required.

  • By between January 31 and March 6. Email: to request an in person or remote meeting.

  • RFP Closes: 6 PM PST, March 6, 2023 (portal will close automatically)

  • Community Review Panel meets: Between March 11 and 19, 2023. Specific date will be scheduled for in-person applicants

  • Board approves CRP recommended slate of grants: March 28

  • Applicants notified of results: March 31



Visit HSD's grant interface page. Applicants will be asked to chose either a written application or an in-person presentation in front of the Community Review Panel (CRP). In-person presentations will be scheduled soon, but email Ellen if you would like to be notified when the date is set.

The application and this informational material is available online in English, Traditional Chinese and Vietnamese.



All funding programs can be highly competitive.  We encourage you to:

  1. Read these guidelines, check your eligibility, and follow the instructions carefully.

  2. Explore the application early so you can plan ahead.

  3. Update Seattle Business License, if needed.  HERE

  4. Be clear and concise in your application.  Panelists read and evaluate many applications. 




Organizations and individuals receiving awards from the Historic South Downtown and funded by Seattle Office of Arts & Culture (ARTS) must acknowledge Historic South Downtown and City of Seattle’s support in printed materials, signage visible to the public, via social media, or in other ways appropriate to the project.  Historic South Downtown and Seattle ARTS will supply preferred wording and logos in electronic format.


Regular reports and final reports and invoicing will be due as per the contract schedule and negotiated with Historic South Downtown.  Reports shall include data (demographic, # of people attending, etc.) and narrative as outlined in the contract.  When adding our organization onto your insurance please add "Pioneer Square International District CPDA" located at 409B Maynard Ave S. Seattle, WA 98104. For additional information, contact: Ellen Ta,



  2. BEACON ARTS:  Beacon Hill (including Mt Baker) 

  3. DELRIDGE NEIGHBORHOODS DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION:  Delridge, Highland Park, Westwood (north of SW Roxbury) 

  4. DOWNTOWN SEATTLE ASSOCIATION: Pioneer Square and Chinatown-International District



  7. GEORGETOWN CDA: Georgetown and South Park 

  8. HISTORIC SOUTH DOWNTOWN: Pioneer Square and Chinatown/International District (including Little Saigon and Japantown) 

  9. LAKE CITY COLLECTIVE: North Seattle (specifically Lake City, Greenwood, Northgate, Bitter Lake, and Aurora, north of 85th) 

  10. MUSEUM OF HISTORY & INDUSTRY: South Lake Union 

  11. NA’AH ILLAHEE FUND: City-wide


  13. UDISTRICT PARTNERSHIP:  University District 

  14. WEST SEATTLE JUNCTION: West Seattle Junction

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Find Support! Drop-In Office Hours Tuesdays 1/31 to 2/28 10 am to 12:30 PM Thursdays 2/2 to 3/2 2 to 4:30 PM Hing Hay Coworks 409B Maynard Ave S Ring Bell at Door! Email: for more info.
About HSD
Grant Eligibility
Use of Funds
Use of Funds
Data Collection
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How to Apply
Application Tips
Obligation of Awardees
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