Purpose and Grant Guidelines



 The Martha Lee Cain Tranby Music Enrichment Fund exists for the purpose of making modest grants to performing music organizations in the greater Kansas City, Missouri area so that these organizations may enrich the music and cultural lives of people living in this area. The language of the governing trust document states that the Fund assets must be used for “the promotion of music education, composition, performance, or any other music endeavor by individuals, groups or institutions.” For practical reasons and based upon past years’ experience, the Trustees of the fund have elected to direct the Fund grants specifically to music performing organizations for purposes of supporting public music performances. 

Selection Guidelines

The guidelines for grant applications to the Fund are as follows:

1. The application deadline is February 15 of each calendar year. Your application must be mailed to the Secretary of the Selection Committee and postmarked no later than 5:00 p.m. on February 15. Personal deliveries and overnight deliveries are also accepted.  E-mail applications are also accepted as long as the e-mail is dated no later than 5:00 p.m. on February 15.  The name and address of the Secretary of the Selection Committee appears on the application form which can be downloaded and printed from our Application Form page. 

2. Grant applications are evaluated by a Selection Committee appointed by the Trustees of the trust which governs the Fund. These applications are then submitted to the Trustees for approval, and those submitting approved grant applications receive their letters of approval sometime during the month of March, with actual checks for the amounts awarded being sent out shortly thereafter.

3. The maximum grant amount is $5,000, with most grants ranging between $500 and $5,000.  The Fund reserves the right to make grants for less than the amount requested. 

4. To submit a grant application, please download, fill out and mail in (or deliver or e-mail) the grant application form which can be downloaded and printed from our Application Form page. This application form is available there in PDF format and in MS Word format.  It cannot be completed online. 

5. Generally speaking, the Selection Committee and the Trustees adhere to the following guidelines in making grant decisions:

(a) the Fund favors applications from organizations whose music performances reach a broad and diverse audience;

(b) the Fund favors applicants whose performances are of a professional or very high nonprofessional quality, and who have a reputation for excellence;

(c) the Fund favors applicants who have attracted support from other donors within the community;

(d) the Fund makes grants for specific performing projects and also for general operating expenses;

(e) the Fund does not make grants for capital campaigns or endowment campaigns;

(f) the Fund does not make grants for the construction of buildings or acquisition of equipment or materials (other than those used in the process of music performances);

(g) the Fund does not make grants for the primary purpose of music education (such as attendance at music camps or workshops) as opposed to public performance;

(h) an applicant organization should have at least a three-year operation history, although exceptions will be made upon presentation of strong arguments that this requirement should be waived;

(i) the Fund does not make grants for scholarship purposes, but may make grants to organizations which themselves make scholarship grants; and

(j) the Fund does not make grants in an amount exceeding 25% of the organization’s annual operating budget.

Although the Fund primarily supports performing music organizations, the Fund may make grants to organizations primarily engaged in other arts activities (for example, dance or theater) if the purpose of the grant is to specifically promote the performing music component of these activities. 

Projects to be Completed within One Year

The Fund requires that any projects or operations for which a grant is made be completed within one year after the making of the grant. 

Other Information; Written Report

Grants from the Martha Lee Cain Tranby Music Enrichment Fund are not matching grants and do not require matching funds. If the budget for your project(s) shows financial requirements exceeding the amount of your request, however (as many do), we would like to have a reasonable idea of how you intend to raise the additional funds to produce your project.

In occasional, but rare, cases, the Selection Committee may request additional information, in which event the Secretary of the Selection Committee will contact you.

There is no prohibition against a successful applicant applying for a grant in the following year, or in any number of following years. 

The Martha Lee Cain Tranby Music Enrichment Fund requests that an organization receiving a grant submit a written report to the Fund following the completion of the project, with a brief description of the project and the manner in which the grant moneys were spent. The purpose of this request is simply to confirm that the funds were spent for the proper designated purpose.