Strengthening Civil Society Through Arts and Culture

Deadline: December 31, 2012
Open to: Projects that aim to to help build open societies in Central Asia, the Caucasus, Afghanistan, Moldova, Mongolia, and Turkey
Grant: $30,000 maximum


The Open Society Arts and Culture Program works at the nexus of arts, culture, human rights, and social advocacy. Through its grant program, the program strives to encourage broad-based critical reflection and catalyze social action in parts of the world where open societies are absent or weak, and where the cultural rights of minority groups are endangered.
The aim of this call for proposals is to strengthen alternative and autonomous cultural infrastructures and innovative arts initiatives, to raise professional standards in the art world in the Arts and Culture Program’s regions of activity, and to promote reform in the arena of cultural policy.
Projects that address one or more of the following priorities of the Arts and Culture Program will be considered to bring added value:

  • Capacity building: Strengthening the capacity of individuals and organizations to implement and sustain good practices and effective ways of working.
  • Collaboration: Building alliances and networks with other projects and organizations to encourage knowledge sharing within the country of operation and beyond.
  • Diversity: Promoting greater equality and access to cultural goods and activities for the most marginalized beneficiaries.
  • Public Engagement with Critical Social Issues: Using the power of arts and culture to promote discussion, debate, and critical reflection on social issues of importance to target communities and beneficiaries.


The Call is open to applicants from and activities in one or more of the following countries: Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Turkey, and Uzbekistan. Ex-patriots of the abovementioned countries who are willing to return temporarily to their country of origin and share their expertise with local organizations or individuals may also apply.
Projects should involve one of the following activities:

  • Cultural production
  • Creating or strengthening cultural platforms
  • Professional development and capacity-building

Applications may be submitted by non-profit legal entities (non-governmental and public organizations, libraries, museums, cultural centers, associations, communities, registered charities, etc.) that work in the field of arts and culture.
Individuals can apply under activities 1 and 3 (professional development only).
For more information, read here.


Most ACP grants range between $1,000 and $30,000 USD. Grants for projects in Central Asia may be co-funded with Hivos (Humanist Institute for Cooperation with Developing Countries, the Netherlands) on a 50-50 matching basis.
Grant awards for collaborative productions, large-scale projects, or complex capacitybuilding plans are typically larger than for individual professional development, noncollaborative artistic productions, or small-scale cultural events. Budgets for the latter three activities should generally not exceed $15,000 USD. In Central Asia only, institutional support grants of up to $73,000 (equivalent to 50,000 EUR) annually are available for distinguished past grantees through a matching grant program with Hivos. These grants are intended to provide long-term support based on a
strategic plan for the institutional development and capacity building of the applicant organization.
You should prepare your budget indicating gross amounts (salary charges and VAT included) unless your organization is able to recover VAT, in which case you should calculate on a net basis.  If you apply for support within the framework of the Hivos-ACP joint grant program, you should submit your budget also in your local currency.
For applicants from Turkey, funding from ACP and all other Soros Foundation/OSF entities should not exceed 33% of the total project budget. In-kind contributions may be included as a percentage of the total project budget.


Step 1: Each applicant should submit a Letter of Inquiry, which can be downloaded  from ACP’s website. The purpose of the Letter of Inquiry is to offer immediate feedback to applicants on whether their project is eligible for consideration under the eligibility criteria. If your project is judged to be ineligible, you will receive an explanation of the reason. ACP will typically respond to your Letter of Inquiry within two weeks of receipt.
Step 2: Applicants who are invited to submit an application should complete the Application Form and prepare a detailed budget using the Budget Template. The Application Form and Budget Template can be downloaded from ACP’s website. Please note that Step 2 remains competitive, i.e., even with a good proposal, your application may not be funded.

  1.  Application Forms may be completed in either Russian or English. English is preferred, however forms completed in Russian will also be accepted. Please use 12-point print size in Times New Roman font.
  2. If the proposed project includes a collaborative aspect, applicants must submit a letter
  3. from the proposed collaborator or partner confirming the arrangement described by
  4. the applicant.
  5. Biographies of principal project personnel should be submitted as an appendix to the  application form.
  6. Please submit your completed application form via e-mail to the OSF Arts and Culture Coordinator for your country:

Afghanistan: Daniela Bolganschi
Armenia: Laura Gevorgyan
Azerbaijan: Jahangir Selimkhanov
Georgia: Ana Riaboshenko
Kazakhstan: Daniela Bolganschi
Kyrgyzstan: Jildiz Kudaibergen
Moldova: Daniela Bolganschi
Mongolia: Ariunaa Tserenpil
Tajikistan: Gulandom Nabieva
Turkey: Esra A. Aysun
Uzbekistan: Daniela Bolganschi
Please note that incomplete applications (that is, applications missing one or more of the required components) will not be considered for funding.

Application form in English

Application form in Russian

The deadline is December 31, 2012.

The Official Website

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