Client Spotlight: The Children’s Museum of Cleveland

When the staff and board of the Children’s Museum of Cleveland (CMC) sought to open a new history exhibit, Centuries of Childhood: An American Story, they recognized it was an opportunity to seek major federal grant dollars.

Yet while CMC had a strong history of receiving grants from private foundations, the museum had never before secured a federal grant. Executive Director Maria Campanelli hired Grants Plus to advise her staff and manage the process. “A federal grant can be daunting,” Maria explains. “Help from Grants Plus took the pressure off our staff.”

A team of Grants Plus consultants guided museum staff through the complex process of applying for federal funding, step-by-step: First, investigating federal grant programs to identify the most appropriate opportunity. Then, outlining a detailed timeline that made clear what milestones needed to be reached to stay on track towards the grant deadline. And finally, in close coordination with museum staff, Grants Plus took the lead on developing, writing, editing, and completing each narrative section and attachment for the application package.

Months later, CMC and Grants Plus had reason to celebrate when the museum was awarded its first federal grant: an award of $75,000 from the Institution of Museum and Library Science (IMLS) Museums for America Program. This initial proposal served as a springboard for CMC to secure six subsequent grants, bringing in an additional $118,000 for the exhibit.

Aside from these grant dollars, Maria said she values the knowledge and confidence that she and her staff gained from working with Grants Plus. The positive experience was mutual—the Grants Plus team is so proud and honored to have been part of CMC’s first federal funding victory! +


Sarah Dave