Micro-grants

What is a micro-grant?

A micro-grant is a small sum of money that is given to an individual or group to help them make meaningful progress towards their projects or goals.

Our micro-grants will provide three $100 (USD) awards to underrepresented tabletop creators each month.

How does this work?

To apply for a micro-grant, all you need to do is submit a short application. This process is free.

Applications are accepted on a monthly basis. You have until 11:59 pm (UTC-8) on the final day of the month to submit your application; after that time, all applications received will be considered with the next month's applicants. Anonymous application information will then be shared with an independent review board who will have one week to read answers and select three recipients. The independent review board will change each month to provide a greater diversity of viewpoints and input.

Here's the timeline for the August micro-grants:

  • Applications open on August 1, 2020

  • Applications close at 11:59 pm (UTC-8) on August 31, 2020

  • Applications are made anonymous and shared with the independent review board on September 1, 2020

  • The independent review board confirms their three selections by September 7, 2020

  • Recipients are privately notified no later than September 7, 2020.

  • Recipients are publicly announced and have funds sent to them on or around September 8, 2020

Who is eligible to receive these micro-grants?

Applicants must meet these requirements in order to qualify for a micro-grant.

Applicants must:

      1. Consider themselves to be underrepresented in the tabletop community (with regards to gender, ethnicity, disability, sexuality, race, age, or other demographics)

      2. Be making something related to analog tabletop games (board games, card games, tabletop RPGs, wargaming, etc.)

      3. Be able to receive funds through PayPal, Venmo, or CashApp

Applicants cannot:

      1. Have received a micro-grant from us in the last twelve months

      2. Be part of the review board for this month

      3. Be an organizer of these micro-grants or the Tabletop Mentorship Program

These applications are open internationally. Applicants may be tabletop creators of any kind (content creators, game designers, artists, publishers, event organizers, translators, etc). You do not need to be part of the Tabletop Mentorship Program to qualify.

What can micro-grant money be used for?

That's up to each individual recipient. Be creative and think about how this micro-grant would be most useful for you and your specific project.

Some ways you might consider using the micro-grant money:

  • purchasing supplies or covering printing costs

  • covering costs associated with attending events, including registration, food, parking, and hotel costs

  • getting childcare to allow for uninterrupted work time

  • renting an event space to put a local event together

Those who receive micro-grants do not have to show receipts of how the money was used; this is not a loan, and it does not need to be paid back.

How are applications evaluated?

The independent review board will look at anonymous answers to these two questions from each application:

"What is most exciting to you about the tabletop-related project you are currently focused on?"

"How would you use $100 (USD) to help you with your project?"

We are encouraging the review board to select three recipients based on answers that they find to be interesting, unique, important, or exciting based on their personal preferences.

How can I apply?

The application is available here.

How can I donate or volunteer my organization to ACT AS an independent review board?

To donate to our GoFundMe, which is currently raising funds to cover the first year of the micro-grants, please go here.

If you would like to independently sponsor one month ($300) or have your group considered as one of our independent review boards that selects monthly micro-grant recipients, please contact us here.

Who is organizing this, and why?

These micro-grants are being organized by the same team that organizes the Tabletop Mentorship Program: Grace Kendall and Mike Belsole. We are always looking for new ways to support creators in our community so that everyone has a chance to make interesting projects and meet their personal goals. One of the biggest obstacles that blocks opportunity is financial inequality; we hope that these micro-grants will allow individuals or groups to make small but meaningful steps forward on the projects they're most excited about.

We will have a different independent team reviewing entries each month to take our personal bias out of the equation and to ensure that a variety of different viewpoints and experiences are considered when selecting recipients. For the first month, The Pathways Fellowship will act as our inaugural review board. Water Bear Games has kindly agreed to review applicants for August.