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FY23 Arts and Humanities Fellowship Program (AHFP) FAQs

As of 7/8/2022


Is consideration of financial circumstances taken into account during the AHFP review process?

No, financial circumstances are not a part of the application, or review criteria and therefore are not considered when applications are being reviewed.

What is the real deadline? I saw it was July 8th but then heard July 11th.

We were able to extend the deadline by a couple of days to give applicants the weekend to complete their application. The new deadline is Monday, July 11th at 10:00 PM.



Is the DC Arts Commission open to funding children's literature?

Yes, children's literature writers are eligible to apply for and receive our agency's Arts and Humanities fellowship grant.

Could my talented child or teenager who is an artist apply for the visual arts fellowship?

To be eligible for our fellowship grant, individuals must be 18 years old or older. 

I am a musician residing in DC and am interested in applying for the Arts and Humanities Fellowship. I have lived in DC for nearly 8 years and I own property in DC. I am active duty in the military, so my driver’s license is issued by NY, where I enlisted, but lists my address in SE DC. Am I eligible to apply for the fellowship?

To be eligible to apply for this grant, you must be a legal District of Columbia resident for at least one (1) year prior to the application deadline and must maintain residency during the entire grant period; be an artist, arts professionals and/or humanities practitioners, aged 18 or older; have a permanent District of Columbia address, as listed on government issued identification or tax returns. Post office boxes may not be used as a primary address.

To demonstrate proof of DC residency, you will be required to submit a current DC Driver's license or a DC residency ID. If you are not in possession of either, you must submit two of the following:

  • A copy of an active lease agreement, certified deed, or mortgage statement with DC address.
  • A phone or utility bill from within the past two months.
  • DC voter registration card.
  • A valid District of Columbia motor vehicle registration or DC DMV identification card.
  • Canceled checks or receipts for mortgage or rental payments on a residential property within the past 2 months.
  • Utility bills with a DC address, and payment receipts within the past 2 months.
  • Proof of automobile insurance showing the person’s DC residency address.
  • A signed DC Department of Motor Vehicles proof of residency form from another District resident stating that the applicant lives at their address in the District.

Am I eligible to apply for a fellowship grant if I never submitted a final report for another grant program?

No, final reports for all other CAH grants must be submitted to be eligible to receive a fellowship grant.

Are fellowship applicants required to attend a live chat session in order to apply?

No, they are not. However  live chat recordings can be accessed on the CAH website.

Application Content: 

If I do not see my specific sub-category within my discipline, what should I select?

It would depend on the discipline and sub-category. We usually recommend applicants to reach out to the corresponding grant manager to speak through your work and help guide you. You can find the complete list of Grant Managers and disciplines on pages 10-11 of the RFA. One thing to think about is, who do you want reviewing your application? For example, if you are a comic artist who equally uses writing and illustration to tell a story, and you want to focus on the watercolor work in the comic then maybe Visual Art is best, as those panelists will be more versed in painting, watercolor technique. However, if you really want the comics to be viewed as multiple disciplines in one, creating a specific artform, then you may want to consider Interdisciplinary. For a full list of disciplines and some examples of what they encompass, please take a look at page 3-4 of the RFA, found here.

What format should I upload files?

Please submit documents as PDF, and any images as JPEG, PNG, Etc. Please DO NOT upload a photo of a document taken with an iPhone or similar. This is a .heic file, and not visible to reviewers. If you are using your phone as a scanner, please if possible use a scanner app or similar, or make sure the file is saved as a PDF. An .heic file is not visible to staff or reviewers. Additionally any documents should be PDF. Pages and Word are not accessible to staff members or reviewers.

Do I need to put a "request amount"? It is my understanding that the highest award is $12,500 and a formula is used to determine other amounts, so are there any pros or cons to not putting a specific amount?

No. As this is not a project based grant, we do not ask for a request amount.


Work Samples:

When considering work samples, as a musician would you suggest uploading audio or visual files?

Whichever you feel best showcase your artistry. If you are singing during a theatrical performance of some kind, video may better demonstrate your artistry in that example.

Can I include external links in/as our work samples, for example links to my artistic  Facebook or Instagram ?

Panelists are advised to stay within the "four corners of the application", meaning they evaluate the application based on the application materials that were submitted in the Grants Portal and not external knowledge, research, or outside websites. This way all applications are evaluated based on what the applicants include in their application. Therefore panelists may not necessarily take into account anything not in the uploaded application on the Grants Portal. It is highly recommended to use the media library in the Grants Portal to upload work samples. 

I have a question about the work sample, specifically as a writer. The guidelines on page 15 mention that the work sample should be: 10-20 pages. It does not clarify if  those pages are double or single spaced. Can you clarify that for me? 
Additionally, if I choose to submit from a longer work and need to include the additional page of context for the work, does that page count as one of the twenty or is it in addition to one of the twenty pages (therefore a total of 21 pages)?

The work sample should be double spaced. An additional page for context would count as one of the twenty pages.

I was having trouble uploading my work samples via the YouTube ID link. I was only able to upload one of my work samples but it would not let me upload the others. Any troubleshooting suggestions?

The easiest solution oftentimes is to log off the portal and log back in to upload additional  material. Additionally if you need instructions on how to upload work samples in the grant portal’s media library, please see our PDF on “Uploading Media to Applications, found here

Are monologuing work samples accepted for the fellowship grant program?

There are several different disciplines that you can apply for, and yes, the fellowship program does have a theatre cohort and monologue work samples are acceptable.


Review Criteria: 

What is the best way for an applicant to demonstrate their “District Impact” in order to do well in that criterion? 

The District Impact criterion is worth 10% and is written as, “The applicant or applicant's arts and humanities work engages, reflects, or responds to the District’s residents and visitors”. In some way it is up to the applicant to determine how to showcase that. For example, if an applicant is a native Washingtonian and has been an artist in DC for most of their life; that may be very apparent in the applicant’s answers to questions, their artistic resume, support materials, and so on. Or if their work is hyper localized in working with the community of a certain ward or neighborhood, that can be demonstrated in a support material or work sample or is spoken to in the applicant’s Artist Statement. Please note that this criterion has been adjusted based on feedback from a similar criterion in FY22.


Certificate of Clean Hands

Does a certificate of clean hands only reference my taxable income?

A Certificate of Clean Hands demonstrates that A DC resident doesn’t owe DC Government a debt of $100 or more for any tickets, fees, fines, penalties, taxes or a failure to file and pay District tax returns.



I saw a slide during the presentation mentioning if you're interested in being a panelist. I can't remember if it was an email or name provided to contact if interested. Can you assist?

Please use this link to access the panelist application and the corresponding details: Volunteer to be a CAH Panelist