ACTA's Programs

The Alliance for California Traditional Arts administers three core programs which provide grants and contracts to folk & traditional artists and organizations.

Living Cultures Grants Program

This papel picado, or traditional Mexican paper-cut, was created by Margaret Sosa who through a Living Cultures Grants Program grant teaches classes at Avenue 50 Studio in Highland Park, Los Angeles.The Living Cultures Grants Program seeks to sustain and strengthen the folk and traditional arts in the state of California with grants of $5,000 to California-based nonprofits, as well as other organizations who work with fiscal sponsors.

Apprenticeship Program

Master Yurok basketweaver Margaret Lee Peters (right) and her cousin and 2014 apprentice Kristen Rose RaymondThe Alliance for California Traditional Arts (ACTA) Apprenticeship Program encourages the continuity of the state’s traditional arts and cultures by contracting master artists to offer intensive, one-on-one training to qualified apprentices. Each $3,000 contract will support a period of concentrated learning for apprentices demonstrate a committed engagement with and talent for a specific folk & traditional art form or practice.

Roundtable Series

ACTA's Roundtable Series is expanding statewide! Check back soon for locations and other announcements.

ArtistsBeginning in 2008 with the generous support from the The William & Flora Hewlett Foundation and the San Francisco Arts Commission, our Roundtable Series was designed to strengthen intercultural traditional arts networks and leadership, and to offer opportunities for traditional and tradition-based artists and arts advocates to learn from one another through intimate discussion, technical assistance, networking, and sharing community-based arts and culture.

The series is donation- based with no one turned away for lack of funds and is held in various venues to encourage participation.  Starting in June 2014, the Bay Area series will expand to other statewide locations.

Community Leadership Project

Students of the Merced Lao Family Community’s qeej (pronounced “gheng”) class.


The Community Leadership Project (CLP) is supported by a joint partnership between the David & Lucile Packard, James Irvine, and William & Flora Hewlett foundations.  It supports financial stability and leadership development for small and midsize organizations serving low-income people and communities of color in the San Joaquin Valley.