ArtsFund & Commerce Award Nearly $11M In Pandemic Relief To Washington Nonprofits

ArtsFund, in partnership with the Washington State Department of Commerce, will begin distributing $ 10.78 million in recovery grants to 702 nonprofits in 34 counties across the state this week.

Announced May 3, 2021, the Nonprofit Community Relief (NCR) grant program is designed to provide critical funding to nonprofit arts, culture, science, and heritage organizations. Neighborhood clubs; non-profit sports and leisure groups; and veterinary service organizations affected by the pandemic.

Applicants were asked to apply for between $ 2,500 and $ 25,000. Each eligible organization that has applied will be awarded grants covering over 91% of the total requested funding. Over 70% of award winners reported pre-pandemic budgets of less than $ 500,000.

A full list of the scholars can be found HERE.

“At their core, nonprofits are powered by people who serve people, and their commitment during the pandemic has helped countless communities by providing their constituents with the relief and recovery services they need,” said Michael Greer, President and CEO of ArtsFund . “ArtsFund is proud to partner with Commerce to recognize the important role of nonprofits, and arts and culture in particular, in sustaining thriving and vibrant communities.”

“These funds provide critical financial resources to keep people employed and active, to empower communities and their local economies,” said Commerce Director Lisa Brown. “As we all reshape our future together, the positive economic impact of these community-based grants will help keep momentum going through the next stages of recovery.”

Almost 90% of all recipients expect their earnings to be reduced by more than 30% after the pandemic.

The examples below reflect the depth and breadth of these awards for the communities they serve.

  • The African American Community, Cultural and Educational Society (Franklin County) is committed to helping the Mid-Columbia Community improve the quality of African American life and raise awareness of African American participation and contributions through cultural and educational activities and outreach programs.
  • Walla Walla County’s Children’s Museum offers visitors of all ages and cultures the opportunity to learn, explore, and introduce themselves through interactive play.
  • Deaf Spotlight (King County) inspires and showcases the deaf culture and sign languages ​​through the arts.
  • The Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association (King County) integrates art, nature and neighborhood to build and maintain a dynamic Delridge.
  • The Feminist Karate Union (King County) provides inexpensive, high quality karate training to people who are disproportionately harassed, including those who identify as female, children, and those who are discriminated on grounds of gender identity.
  • Haida Roots (King County) preserves the critically endangered Haida language, connects community members living in the Seattle area with Haida culture and language, and supports the creative development of new indigenous music, art, and books.
  • Hazel Dell Little League (Clark County) teaches baseball basics in a fun, skill-based environment that allows players to enjoy the baseball experience and develop physical fitness, confidence, discipline, and good sportsmanship, qualities that can bring them into their future life experiences.
  • Mi Centro (Pierce County) promotes the advancement of Latino and Indigenous communities by providing social services and educational programs while honoring heritage and culture through the arts.
  • Parasport Spokane, Spokane County offers training, recreational and competitive opportunities for teenagers and adults with physical disabilities.
  • Puget Soundworks, King County offers an inclusive singing community where the voices of all people are heard; a community that is LGBTQ-friendly and open to all genders – especially transgender and non-binary singers; a community that comes together to make beautiful music and raise marginalized voices in pursuit of social justice.
  • Service Peace Warriors (Franklin County) provides service animals to veterans returning home with wartime PTSD and other disabilities.
  • Windhaven Therapeutic Riding (Clark County) promotes the healing of active services, reserves, and veterans suffering from the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury (TBI), and other service-related injuries.
  • 206 Zulu, King County provides accessible spaces while serving the communities by enhancing, preserving, and celebrating hip hop culture.

Grant funds can be used to cover expenses incurred between March 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021 due to the financial hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Grant recipients name the top uses for the funding, in order of priority, including staff salaries, programming, rent / mortgages, and reopening educational and awareness communications.

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