To help writers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, we will be highlighting emergency funds available to writers. For more sources of support, read our running list of resources for writers in the time of coronavirus.
Today a coalition of arts funders announced they will administer $10 million to artists and writers “facing dire financial emergencies due to the impact of COVID-19.” Eligible individuals can apply for an unrestricted grant of $5,000.
The fund is part of the larger Artist Relief initiative, organized by the Academy of American Poets, Artadia, Creative Capital, Foundation for Contemporary Arts, MAP Fund, National YoungArts Foundation, and United States Artists. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation contributed $5 million to the fund, the other half of which was matched by various U.S. foundations.
Practicing artists who are twenty-one or older, able to receive taxable income in the United States regardless of their citizenship status, and have lived and worked primarily in the United States over the last two years are eligible. The fund is open to artists who work in the disciplines of craft, dance, design, film, media, music, theater and performance, traditional arts, visual art, and writing.
The funds will be administered over the course of five application cycles during the next six months. Artist Relief coalition partners and representatives from collaborating cultural organizations across the country will review applications every week; once accepted, grantees will receive funds within two weeks. The fund organizers plan to administer at least a hundred grants every week.
In addition to the emergency relief fund, the Artist Relief initiative will serve as an informational resource, and will collaborate with Americans for the Arts to launch the “COVID-19 Impact Survey for Artists and Creative Workers” to assess and address the needs of artists.
“In hard times like these, we turn to the arts to illuminate and help us make meaning and find connection. Without immediate intervention, individual artists and the arts ecosystem of which they are the foundation could sustain irreparable damage,” says Elizabeth Alexander, the president of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. “As artists confront these new fiscal realities, we are proud to support this vital effort to address artists’ urgent needs. We call on others to join us in supporting artists so they may continue to be our lights, chroniclers, and connectors throughout this crisis and beyond.”