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For Organizations

Federal Relief 

CARES ACT of 2020 Resources

OFFICE HOURS! Based on popular demand, Nina is extending her weekly Zoom Office Hours through 2022 on EVERY OTHER Friday at 11am ET, except for the blackout dates (see Arts Action Fund website for the schedule). She will continue to help the arts community to navigate the complex web of federal funding opportunities, regulations, and deadlines related to current and upcoming COVID-19 economic federal aid programs.

Other Federal Relief Resources

Field Programming

Arts Education

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For Individuals

Federal Relief 

CARES ACT of 2020 Resources

OFFICE HOURS! Based on popular demand, Nina is extending her weekly Zoom Office Hours through 2022 on EVERY OTHER Friday at 11am ET, except for the blackout dates (see Arts Action Fund website for the schedule). She will continue to help the arts community to navigate the complex web of federal funding opportunities, regulations, and deadlines related to current and upcoming COVID-19 economic federal aid programs.

As the unemployment rate increases, state unemployment offices may be overwhelmed; find your state's unemployment office website and start the process early.

Relief Funds


  • Actors Fund. The emergency financial assistance program helps eligible applicants in need. It is not income replacement, but limited funds for basic living necessities. The Actors Fund is also administering COVID19 Assistance programs for performing arts and entertainment unions including SAG-AFTRA, IATSE, Actors Equity Association, American Guild of Musical Artists and Musicians Local 802. Additionally, The Fund is administering the Jujamcyn Theatre Assistance Program.
  • The Adolph & Esther Gottlieb Emergency Grant. Grants up to $15,000. Painters, printmakers and sculptors are welcome to apply. Ongoing fund. No deadline.
  • Artist Relief Project. Grants up to $200. Eligible applicants are required to demonstrate that they are artists via a resume and website, where applicable, and share the Artist Relief Project fundraiser with their own networks and provide a screenshot. Ongoing fund. No deadline, but should follow Funds Distribution schedule.
  • Artist Recuse Trust (A.R.T.) Grant for the Web. A.R.T. will provide $1,500 over three months to artists in need and amplify the stories, performances and creations they had hoped to share with the world before the pandemic limited their ability to do so.
  • Rauschenberg Medical Emergency Grants. Artists in need who are practicing in the disciplines of visual arts, film/video/electronic/digital arts, or choreography and living in the U.S., Tribal Nations, District of Columbia, and U.S. Territories who are seeking support for medical, dental or mental health-related emergency expenses: the Rauschenberg Medical Emergency Grants provides one-time grants of up to $5,000 for  recent emergencies. This program, supported by the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation and administered by New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), is designed to serve artists in financial need who otherwise may delay critical treatment or incur substantial and perhaps overwhelming debt. The current cycle is open now through November 30 for emergencies occurring April 1, 2021 and later. Please click here for details.
  • The Rauschenberg Dancer Emergency Grants program provides one-time grants of up to $5,000 to professional dancers in need in the U.S.,Tribal Nations, District of Columbia, and U.S. Territories who have a dire financial emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dancers must demonstrate an urgent and critical need for emergency support in order to apply. Dire financial emergencies include the lack or imminent endangerment of essentials such as housing, medicine/healthcare, utilities, and food. The first cycle will open on November 8, 2021 and close on January 7, 2022. Funds may be requested for emergency expenses for up to a three-month period between September 1, 2021 and April 30, 2022. It is administered by New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), and funded by Robert Rauschenberg Foundation. Please click here for details.


Stay tuned for updated relief funds by State. 


Arts Education

Creative Economy

  • Atrium (Sacramento, CA) posts a resource page for creative workers and business
  • Audio Assemble blog on short-term and long-term strategies for musicians dealing with income loss.

Public Art

For additional resources on public art and the response and recovery from COVID-19 pandemic, visit the Public Art Resource Center and look for additional links under the “Emergency Response COVID-19” in the General Topics menu.

  • Forecast Public Art’s resource page shares relief funding and opportunities
  • Project for Public Spaces created a blog post to help public space managers help fight COVID-19
  • Read this paper on how to prepare your public art collection in response to disasters
  • Read our blog on with resources, stories and information on implementing community engagement events
  • Common Field will be hosting their annual convening virtually and for free
  • Tips for Conducting an Online Artist Selection Panel by LA Metro Arts & Design for Art-in-Transit.


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Field Tools and Research


Impact Surveys

The coronavirus has had a devastating impact on America’s arts sector. Since the first U.S. case was reported on January 20, 2020 cancellations and closings are taking place at thousands of arts organizations across the country, and two-thirds of the nation’s artists are now unemployed. Americans for the Arts leads the three premier national studies tracking the human and financial impacts of the COVID-19 crisis on the arts.




The Impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19) on Arts and Cultural Organizations

COVID-19’s Impact on The Arts: Research & Tracking Update

The coronavirus pandemic continues to gnaw away at the nation’s arts and cultural infrastructure. Nearly every arts organization has postponed or outright cancelled performances, exhibitions, and events. Similarly, nearly every working artist has lost at least some work, and a bewildering 62 percent report they have become fully unemployed because of the crisis.

COVID-19 Impact Survey

Americans for the Arts has released new versions of our COVID-19 Impact on the Arts surveys. The findings will power our ongoing advocacy work to ensure the arts are part of the billions of dollars in relief and recovery funding.


Impact on General Public—Role of the Arts in Protecting Mental Health

Due to COVID-19, millions of Americans are isolated in their homes, and will remain so for a significant period. “COVID-19 and Social Distancing: Impact of Arts and Other Activities on Mental Health” is a new study designed to strengthen our understanding of the mental health impacts of sheltering in place, social distancing, and isolation—and to determine if there are activities that buffer against those ill effects (such as the arts). The study is a partnership between University College London, University of Florida, and Americans for the Arts. Everyone age 18 and older is welcome to be part of the study. Participation is fast and simple. Please participate and share this opportunity with family, friends, and colleagues.


American Rescue Plan State & Local Block Grant Arts Tracker

Help us document your success and inspire other arts organizations by example! If you are working with your state or local city, county, or tribe governments to secure ARP block grants for economic relief and recovery for the arts, please take a few minutes to fill out the Americans for the Arts Tracker Google Form, so we can share your examples.



  • NPR story featuring Robert Lynch on the economic impact of the pandemic.
  • United States Department of Arts and Culture launched Art Became The Oxygen which incorporates first-person experience and guidance from respected voices deeply engaged in artistic response from Katrina to Ferguson, from Sandy to Standing Rock. It includes hundreds of links to powerful arts projects, official emergency resources, and detailed accounts for those who want to go even deeper.
  • San Francisco Chronicle Datebook article asking folks not to let the arts die because of the Coronavirus – and wash your hands.
  • Denver Post article about the effect on concerts and arts and cultural events.
  • While the arts are not specifically referenced, this is a helpful article from Nonprofit Quarterly on the early impact on NPO events.
  • Washington Post article about the need for cultural events where we gather together in the time of plague. (paywall present)
  • Crain's Cleveland Business article about artists in Akron, OH.
  • Rolling Stone article on touring musicians.


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Equity/Mental Health

ArtsBlog series: The Impact of COVID-19 on Intentionally Marginalized Artists and Creative Workers

Articles & Resources



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Reopening and Recovery

Stay informed on reopening procedures by following official guidance and practices:


Arts Agency and Arts Service Organization Resource Pages



New Jersey
North Carolina
  • Red Herring Theatre reopening plan consists of a series of practices, policies, and protocols to assure public safety. They are fielding a survey for feedback to their plan.
South Carolina


  • Appalachian Regional Commission has issued a resource page for individuals in the Appalachian region.
  • ArtsFairfax (Virginia) has a resource page
  • Arts Services Initiatives of Western New York has a resource page for Western New York.
  • The Cutaway (Bay Area) has a resource page for artists, musicians, freelancers, and other gig workers who may be struggling or out of work due to the coronavirus crisis
  • New England Foundation for the Arts has a resource page.
  • WESTAF published a resource page for western states featuring resources and funding opportunities


  • Creative Response. Creative Response is a New Orleans-based relief effort to support the region’s greatest natural resource— the artists, performers, writers, and culture bearers that make New Orleans one of the most creative places in the world. These creators shape every aspect of the city, and the current Covid-19 crisis has ground to halt both gig work and the tourist economy that many of them rely on. The page features kits, activities, relief fund grants and resources.
  • Houston Arts Alliance resoure page is available
  • Worcester Cultural Coalition (Worcester, MA) has a resource page offering surveys, advocacy and funding resources
  • City of Oakland published a resource page for artists and nonprofit arts organizations in the Oakland area

Other Resources and Articles

  • Surale Phillips is committing pro bono services for 19 special projects over the next 24 months for local nonprofit arts organizations. Please send your request to [email protected].
  • Kickstarter published a page with resources for artists.
  • Wired Impact has assembled a extensive page with NPO resources. It has a rich variety of information and tools that cover topics including information about human resource management, fundraising, communications, event planning and more.


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Americans for the Arts News and Events


Americans for the Arts COVID-19 Webinars

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