Community Foundation for Greater New Haven > Strengthening Nonprofits > About Our Impact > Arts and Culture

Community Impact - Supporting Arts & Culture

The arts have been a priority for Foundation donors since our very beginning. Nearly twenty percent of our grants and distributions, primarily generated by designated funds established over many years, are invested in the arts and arts education.

The Foundation has also developed a leadership strategy to strengthen the local arts ecosystem.


Work We Fund

Music Haven provides boys and girls from struggling neighborhoods the opportunity to learn from and be mentored by world-class musicians.

Music programs for the underserved expand

During its recent grant term, Music Haven expanded the breadth of its programming and offered more opportunities for families to attend concerts through transportation support. The program extended opportunities to families to attend events, provided trauma-informed training for staff, added of two new beginner classes, and increased access to free summer camps for students who previously had not had summer arts opportunities.

Shoreline Arts Alliance enhanced its programming and broadened its audience through the addition of programs and performances with enhanced accessibility. Its Autism/Sensory Friendly program brought residents and visitors from 68 CT towns, 8 states, and 4 countries.


Panelists and attendees discuss community violence and respond with empathy at Long Wharf Theatre.

A play and dialogue about violence in the community

The Community Foundation sponsored Long Wharf Theatre's 50th anniversary season and supported the production of Our Town and brownsville song (b-side for tray), two plays with powerful relevance to our community.  

In conjunction with the production of brownsville song (b-side for tray), The Foundation and Long Wharf convened a forum on violence with local leaders, national experts and community members in an effort to promote greater understanding and empathy.

The sold-out event featured keynote speaker Dr. Deborah Prothrow-Stith, a leading public-health expert on violence. A panel of local experts shared stories of the impact of violence. Four powerful video testimonials captivated participants with stories of personal loss and resilience.

The event was capped with a riveting performance of brownsville song (b-side for tray), written by Kimber Lee and directed by Patricia McGregor.



Every summer, thousands of visitors flock to the New Haven Green for outdoor events at the International Festival of Arts and Ideas.

Festival delivers economic impact

The International Festival of Arts and Ideas reported a three-year economic impact to New Haven and greater Connecticut in access of $40 million. In 2016 Festival had an economic impact of over $15 million, a 23% increase from 2015.

The Festival’s large array of events are featured in the New York Times, the New Yorker, the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. The Festival also received several awards including the top spot to visit in CT in 2014, one of the “Top Travel-Worthy Events Worldwide” by National Geographic Traveler, a ranking as one of the “Top 100 Events in North America” by the American Bus Association, and was considered a “Top Learning Vacation” on ABC News. 

Making a difference - stories from our grantees

Arte Celebrates Youth and Hispanic Heritage  »


Every year during Hispanic Heritage Month, ARTE Inc. enlivens New Haven with a full slate of events that showcase the community’s vibrant Latinx culture.

New Haven Symphony Orchestra turns 125 »


A community-driven mission dates back to the founding of NHSO.

Arts and Ideas Celebrates Immigrants »


Immigrants are taking center stage at the Arts and Ideas Festival.

Recent Grant Awards

  • Arts Council of Greater New Haven. - $75,000 to provide general operating support to promote, advocate and foster opportunities for artists, arts organizations and audiences.
  • Creative Arts Workshop - $53,000 to support strategic business planning for and implementation of a new business model that sustains provision of visual arts and its financial future.
  • Guilford Art Center - $48,000 to provide general operating support for arts educational programming, exhibitions and outreach for Shoreline residents.
  • International Festival of Arts & Ideas - $45,000 to support a comprehensive, community-informed study that will assess current cultural impact and help select and appoint a new Executive Director.  
  • Neighborhood Music School, Inc. - $130,000 to provide general operating support for instruction in music, dance and drama, an arts-based preschool and public performances.
  • New Haven Symphony Orchestra - $20,000 to support To Thee We Sing, an April 2019 concert to commemorate the 80th anniversary of Marian Anderson's concert at the Lincoln Memorial in tandem with the Symphony's own 125th Anniversary celebration.


70 Audubon Street
New Haven, CT 06510



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