Minority Ethnic Artists Mentoring and Residency Programme

Sorry, this programme is closed. If you need help please contact us

All Funding for Individuals

The Arts Council of Northern Ireland recognises and welcomes the diversity within our society.

In working to create the conditions for the widest variety of art and creativity for both artists and audiences, we are seeking to address the numerous and complex barriers to access, progression and representation in the arts encountered by minority ethnic artists.

These awards have been informed by the Arts Council’s Intercultural Arts Strategy and framed within our Five Year Strategy Inspire Connect and Lead. Our aim is to support individual artists and creative practitioners from minority ethnic backgrounds and migrant backgrounds at every stage of their career.

Through this Minority Ethnic Artist’s Mentoring and Residency Programme we wish to create opportunities for specialized training, research, cultural exchanges, networking and learning for individual artists, creative practitioners and arts administrators from minority ethnic and migrant backgrounds.

Programme Aims

  • Support workforce skill development and career pathways for artists of all ages from minority ethnic and migrant backgrounds.
  • Inspire excellence through the support of high-quality, ambitious, innovative and imaginative opportunities for artists to collaborate with others.
  • Increase the capacity and opportunities for artists to take professional and creative risks.
  • Contribute to a vibrant and diverse workforce across the breadth of the creative and cultural industries.
  • Increase opportunities for young and emerging minority ethnic artists

Specifically, the scheme will fund residencies and mentoring opportunities through which applicants can develop their creative and professional practice.

Who can apply?

Eligible applicants to this scheme are as follows:

  • Individual artists of all artistic disciplines and all types of working practice from minority ethnic and migrant backgrounds, including people in need of international protection.
  • Creative practitioners and arts administrators from minority ethnic and migrant backgrounds
  • Artform areas can include, but are not limited to the following: visual art, craft, public art, theatre, drama and dance, literature, music, opera and traditional arts, community/participatory arts and arts in health.
  • Employees of statutory bodies (including Universities), undergraduates and postgraduates are eligible to apply but they must prove that their proposal is not properly the concern of their employer and/or are not related to their academic study.

Eligible applicants must also be

  • Living in Northern Ireland
  • Have made a contribution to artistic activities for a minimum period of 2 years.
  • At least 18yrs old and not in secondary education.

Who cannot apply?

Applicants who have broken the conditions of any previous ACNI award within the previous 4 years (taken from the date of the letter of offer) and applicants who remain in breach of any previous letters of offer (regardless of the letter of offer date).

What you can apply for

Applicants should give careful consideration to the feasibility and timing of their activities given possible ongoing restrictions due to COVID-19.

Eligible costs for both the Mentoring and Residency awards may include:

Project assistance

  • Art materials/equipment
  • Buying time for own practice/creation of new work
  • Fees for training courses
  • Artistic fees of Mentors
  • Artistic or technical fees including those towards production or post-production costs associated with presentation or exhibition of work
  • Venue hire e.g. rehearsal space
  • Technical equipment related to the project/proposal
  • Translation costs
  • Documentation costs
  • Childcare costs

Travel grants

  • All travel, mileage costs of 25.7p per mile, commuter and air travel


  • Subsistence costs @£15 per day
  • Accommodation costs

How to apply?

You must apply using our online system. We will not accept applications in hard copy or by email.

  • Online applications may be edited, saved and returned up to the closing date.
  • You must submit all mandatory enclosures associated with the application at the same time as your application, ie. they must be uploaded to your online application prior to its submission. These enclosures are listed on the Attachments page within the online application and are detailed below.
  • Please ensure that you leave sufficient time to upload all documents to the system as there can be long delays as the closing deadline approaches and the system will shut down at 12noon precisely on the closing date, 4 October 2021. If your complete application is not fully uploaded when the system closes, your application will not be accepted.
  • If you submit your application by the closing deadline, you will receive an automated email advising that your application has been successfully submitted to the system. If you do not receive this email, your application has not been submitted.