About the Secure the B.A.G. (Black Arts Grants) Program

Bayview Uncut: Secure the B.A.G. (Black Arts Grants) is a program of the Bayview Opera House in collaboration with the San Francisco African American Arts and Cultural District and is funded by the San Francisco Office of Economic and Workforce Development though the Dreamkeeper Initiative.

What is the purpose of the Secure the B.A.G. program?

The purpose of this grant program is to support artists and cultural workers in bringing artistic productions that showcase African American art and culture, to the Bayview Hunters Point and Potrero Hill neighborhoods in San Francisco, and to provide more opportunities for community artists and cultural workers to produce events and perform at the Bayview Opera House Ruth Williams Memorial Theater.

Grantees of the Secure the B.A.G. program are also eligible to receive mentorship in event planning, marketing, production management and more from the Bayview Opera House (for events at the venue) or the African American Arts and Cultural District (for events elsewhere).

When are applications due?

Applications for Secure the B.A.G. are reviewed on a rolling basis until funds are exhausted.

What kind of grants does the Secure the B.A.G. program offer?

Secure the B.A.G. Grants fall into two categories:

Micro Grant: Space/equipment rental/permits/insurance + limited artist fees - Up to $3,000

This category is mainly aimed at covering hard event costs such as rent, permits and insurance for small events, or events that have additional funding already secured for other costs, and only need a subsidy to cover those basic event costs. All events funded through this program must be properly permitted and insured. 10-15 grants will be awarded in this category,

1. For events at the Bayview Opera House Ruth Williams Memorial Theatre, please start by submitting a rental quote request here. The grant, if awarded, can award up to the total of rental fees, permits and insurance costs, plus 1/2 that amount again for artist fees and other event-related expenses, including paying for the time spent organizing the event, up to $3,000 altogether.

2.  For events at other venues or in public outdoor spaces, the grant can pay for space fees, equipment rental, insurance, artist fees, marketing and time spent organizing, up to a total of $3,000.

Mini Grant: Event Support and Production - $3,000 - $10,000

This category is aimed at slightly larger or more complex productions than the micro grant category. Recipients in this category are required to provide evidence of artistic merit, history of producing successful arts and cultural events and have a marketing plan.

Recipients in this category can receive anywhere between $3,000 - $10,000 to cover space and equipment rental fees, insurance, permits, artist fees, marketing costs and and time spent organizing. There will be 4-6 grants awarded in this category, which is more competitive than the Micro grants and requires more documentation of event plans.

Where can I hold my event?

Events must take place at a venue/location within the Bayview-Hunters Point or Potrero Hill Neighborhoods.

When applying for a rent  subsidy at the Bayview Opera House Ruth Williams Memorial Theater, applicants must first submit the BVOH Rental Request Form and receive a quote before submitting an application here.

When will I receive my funding and how much will I receive?

Applying to Secure the B.A.G. does not guarantee any funding nor does it guarantee that you will receive the full amount that you have applied for, or that the grant will cover all event costs. Applicants are encouraged to seek out additional sources of funding.

Upon acceptance into the program grantees will receive their first payment (80%) upfront and their final payment (20%) after the completion of their event and the post event evaluation. 

How does COVID-19 affect my Secure the B.A.G. event?

All events are subject to the rules defined in the health orders published by the City and County of San Francisco that are in effect at the time of the event. The most recent health order issued on January 11, 2021 can be found here.

Please note that the Bayview Opera House Ruth Williams Memorial Theatre currently requires that all eating and drinking takes place outdoors (covered porch OK), and well-fitted masks to be worn inside at all times with limited exceptions for performers while performing. The capacity is reduced to 150 people in the main space, and seats are arranged to promote social distancing. Outdoor events are also possible at the Opera House and have fewer restrictions.

We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.