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Sponsorships through the URA

The URA provides sponsorships to help fund community development events throughout the city, such as small business fairs.

2023 Sponsorship Program Now Closed

As of May 31, 2023, URA Strategic Sponsorship grant funds are exhausted. Please come back in 2024 to apply for URA Sponsorship funds.


2023 Strategic Sponsorship Program Guidelines 

Please carefully review the Strategic Sponsorship Program (“the Program”) Guidelines before applying.  


The Program provides grants to support City of Pittsburgh-based events, programs, and initiatives that align with one or more of the following focus areas:

  1. Strive to make Pittsburgh a more  equitable inclusive place for all residents in all neighborhoods;

  2. Provide equitable, high-quality economic development services;

  3. Invest in economic and community development events, programs and initiatives that align with Pittsburgh’s economic development goals;

  4. Support or spur the development of affordable housing;

  5. Support entrepreneurship and small businesses;

  6. Leverage collaborative relationships with other economic development organizations;

  7. Promote investments that attract and retain businesses; and/or

  8. Expand community-based neighborhood development.



The URA will make $50,000.00 available through the Program in 2023. Grants are generally awarded in amounts of up to $5,000.00. Award amounts are determined by a Sponsorship Committee which conducts a qualitative review of the event/program/initiative’s alignment with one or more of the above stated focus areas, the potential community impact, and the strength of the applicant’s submitted materials.

The URA may, at its discretion, award enhanced Sponsorship grants in amounts of up to $7,500 for events/programs/initiatives that occur in, primarily serve/benefit, and/or are hosted by members of the communities centered in one or more of the seven Avenues of Hope corridors. Please note that enhanced awards are not automatically conferred to Avenues of Hope-related applications. Rather, the decision to award funding in excess of $5,000.00 will be based solely upon the merits of applicants’ vision and submitted application materials.

At its discretion, the URA reserves the right to decline funding or provide funding that is less than the amount requested by the applicant.



Applicants are urged to carefully consider the risks and potential liabilities of hosting an in-person event before applying.


Eligible Entities & Uses

City of Pittsburgh-based entities eligible to apply for Sponsorship funding include:

  1. Nonprofit agencies, including governmental agencies;

  2. For-profit and/or nonprofit partnerships where at least one partner is located within the boundaries of the City of Pittsburgh;

  3. Community-based organizations;

  4. City of Pittsburgh-based small businesses executing a community event or program; and/or

  5. Individual applicants who will receive grant funds through a fiscal partnership with a not-for-profit organization.

Grant funds may be used to for:

  1. The payment of fees/rents for event space(s), including tents and other temporary structures;

  2. The creation of advertisements and community outreach related to the sponsored activity;

  3. Supplying the sponsored activity with supplies, including food and non-acholic drink; and/or

  4. General support of the event, program, or initiative.  


Ineligible Entities, Activities & Fund Uses

Consistent with all URA programming, Sponsorship grants will not be awarded to:

  1. Entities who have not registered with the City of Pittsburgh’s Tax Compliance Office.

  2. Events/programs/initiatives that will occur or primarily serve communities located outside of the boundaries of the City of Pittsburgh. The geographic eligibility of the planned activity's location should be confirmed prior to applying, even in cases when the planned activity's location has a Pittsburgh mailing address. Please use the Pennsylvania Municipal Statistics tool to confirm such eligibility.

Events, programs, and initiatives that are ineligible to receive Program funds include those which are:

  1. Political in nature. Examples of such events include rallies for a campaigning or incumbent elected officials and/or any event which overtly or implicitly endorses one elected official over another.

  2. Religious in nature. Examples include events conducted primarily for the sake of proselytization for a religious group, denomination, or order, any event which overtly or implicitly endorses one religious group over another, and/or excludes participation based upon religious affiliation.

Please note that religious and/or religion-affiliated organizations may apply for funding so long as the sponsored event, program, or initiative is secular in nature.

These restrictions apply even if the applying entity/entities would otherwise be eligible for Strategic Sponsorship grants.

Further, grant funds may not be spent on furnishing alcoholic beverages for events. If the applicant intends to furnish alcohol as part of the event, program, or initiative, that applicant must attest that URA funding will not be used to purchase alcohol prior to grant disbursement.


Additional Conditions and Criteria for Applicants

All applicants considered for a Program grant must:

  1. Provide proof of other sources of event/program/initiative financial support outside of the URA (i.e., prove the event is financially feasible with or without URA support);

  2. Demonstrate thorough event/program/initiative planning and coordination; and

  3. Provide data for the event/program/initiative including anticipated/actual total cost, anticipated/actual impact, and/or the anticipated/actual number of individuals served.


Procedures Following Receipt of Application

  1. All applications received by the URA are reviewed by the the Communication & Community Relations Manager (the “Manager”) for completeness and alignment with the URA’s economic development priorities.

  2. Applicants who have submitted materially deficient and/or incomplete applications will be contacted by the Manager. These applicants will be given five business days to rectify deficiencies and/or supply missing information. Please note that applicants who miss this five-business day correction window will not receive a grant award.

  3. Applicants selected for funding by the Sponsorship Committee will be formally nominated for a grant award via the completion of Application Section D, which is sent to the URA’s Executive Director (the “Director”) for final approval.

  4. Upon the Director’s approval of a grant award, the Manager will contact the applicant to collect grant agreement, banking, and tax documentation.

  5. The applicant will be provided URA branding resources for inclusion in related event/program/initiative materials.

  6. Payment of grant funds will be issued via automated clearing house (“ACH”) payment to the applicant organization or its fiscal representative’s bank account within 15 businesses days of receipt of all grant-related documentation.

  7. Following completion of the event/program/initiative, recipients may be required and should be prepared to provide the URA with recap details, including:
    • How the event/initiative/program supported the goals of the organization;

    • Measurable and non-measurable positive impacts;

    • Number of people served; and/or

    • Neighborhoods affected or involved.


Please contact Kayla Williams, Communication Assistant at with any questions.

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