Commerce and ArtsFund award nearly $11 million in pandemic relief to Washington nonprofits

Over 700 organizations in 34 counties are receiving grants to aid recovery from the effects of COVID-19

SEATTLE, WA. – 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 busy and active, to strengthen communities and their local economies,” said Commerce Director Lisa Brown. “As we all reshape our futures together, the positive economic impact of these community-based grants will help keep momentum going through the next stages of the 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.

  • 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’s Children’s Museum (Walla Walla County) offers visitors of all ages and cultural backgrounds the opportunity to learn, explore, and introduce themselves through interactive play.
  • Deaf spotlight (King County) inspires and showcases deaf culture and sign languages ​​through the arts.
  • Delridge Neighborhood Development Association (King County) integrates art, nature and neighborhood to build and maintain a dynamic Delridge.
  • Feminist Karate Union (King County) provides affordable, high quality karate training to people who are disproportionately bullied, including people who identify as female, children, and those who are discriminated against on the basis 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 the basics of baseball in a fun, skill-based environment that allows players to enjoy the baseball experience, developing physical fitness, self-confidence, discipline and good sportsmanship so that they can incorporate these traits into their future Bring life experiences.
  • Center me (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 everyone’s voices are heard; a community that is LGBTQ-friendly and open to all genders – especially transgender and non-binary singers; a community where we come together to make beautiful music and raise marginalized voices in pursuit of social justice.
  • Service peace warrior (Franklin County) provides service animals to veterans returning home with wartime PTSD and other disabilities.
  • Therapeutic riding in Windhaven (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 elevating, 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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June 22, 2021, 7:54 pm GMT

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