COVID-19 Funding Resources

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Funding Resources – Bay Area

Housing and Utilities Resources

Berkeley: COVID-19 Housing Retention Grants – The program guidelines on this page are specific to the COVID-19 emergency. These criteria will remain in effect for 60 days after the shelter-in-place order is lifted, or longer if deemed necessary by the City of Berkeley. Currently accepting waitlist applications.

Contra Costa County: The SHELTER, Inc. COVID-19 Hotline serves community members affected by the COVID-19 virus. These dedicated emergency funds are for those who are impacted during these trying times.

San Francisco Public Utilities Commission is offering multiple Bill Relief Programs that provide discounts to residential, low-income, and non-profit customers needing assistance.

Santa Clara County Emergency Assistance Network – The Emergency Assistance Network (EAN) agencies in Santa Clara County provide a variety of services to prevent homelessness, utility disconnections, and hunger.

Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties: COVID-19 Emergency Assistance – HIF’s Emergency Housing Fund offers a lifeline after unforeseen and temporary financial setbacks, acting as a bridge between crisis and stability.

Bay Area Wide

Performing Arts Worker Relief Fund (Theatre Bay Area, Dancers’ Group, and InterMusicSF partnership) – Ongoing
Any resident of the San Francisco Bay Area who has worked professionally or vocationally in local performing arts, who has been an active participant in the arts community (those whose life’s work is the performing arts, regardless of the income derived from work in the performing arts) and has experienced a loss of income due to COVID-19.

Headlands Center for the Arts Community Rapid Response Fund – Due date: Feb, 8, 2021
Headlands Center for the Arts seeks to support in-progress, community-based projects led by artists. The organization especially wishes to support work that is developed in partnership between artists and Bay Area businesses, organizations, or others.

San Francisco COVID-19 Emergency Loan for Arts & Culture Nonprofits – Ongoing, as long as resources are available
This Emergency Loan will support arts and culture nonprofits and fiscally sponsored organizations in the eleven Bay Area counties.

Bopsidy Artist Support Page
Directly support SF Bay Area dance instructors and studio operators financially during the COVID-19 crisis.

Fleishhacker Foundation Small Arts GrantsDue date: Jan 15, 2021
Applications are currently being accepted for the spring 2021 review cycle for general operating support for 501(c)3 and fiscally sponsored arts and culture organizations and film projects.

Alameda, Contra Costa, and San Francisco Counties

Zellerbach Family Foundation Community Arts COVID Response GrantDue date: March 22, 2021
Provides general operating support to arts and culture organizations in Alameda, Contra Costa, and San Francisco counties suffering revenue loss due to the closure of venues and cancellation of events. Response grants will be for organizational stability/general operating support, and will be awarded for $5,000, $10,000 or $15,000.

Napa County

Napa County Emergency Financial Assistance (EFA) – Ongoing
In response to a declared emergency in Napa County, we’ve launched a COVID-19 Fund to address the public health and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in our community.

Funding Resources – National and Statewide

Arts Leaders of Color Emergency Fund
Apply for funding or donate in support of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) artists AND administrators (consultants, facilitators, box office staff, seasonal/temporary employees, etc.) who have been financially impacted due to COVID-19.

California Arts Council: Arts & Cultural Organizations General Operating Relief – Due date: Feb 17, 2021
Up to $30,000 in operational relief funding for arts and cultural organizations who have experienced economic hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic, prioritizing small organizations. Visit the California Arts Council website for additional grant opportunities.

California Arts Council: Statewide and Regional Networks – Due date: Feb 24, 2021
Up to $35,000 in support of arts service organizations providing practical resources for the communities they serve. Visit the California Arts Council website for additional grant opportunities.

COVID-19 Freelance Artist Emergency Funding Resources
Some of the relief efforts included in this category are managed by nonprofits, foundations, and other organizations with a history of distributing grants to artists. Others are new funds set up specifically to relieve artists in financial crisis as a result of COVID-19.

Creative Ecosystems and Funds that Support Black People
This list prioritizes Creative Ecosystem and Funds that support Black queer, trans, and nonbinary folks, and Black women.

Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grants COVID-19 Fund – Due date: March 15, 2021
In light of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the artist community, the Foundation for Contemporary Arts is creating a temporary fund to meet the needs of experimental artists (choreographers, composers, playwrights, directors, visual artists, and poets) who have been impacted by the economic fallout from postponed or canceled performances and exhibitions. FCA also offers a non-COVID Emergency Grant if you are seeking support for an upcoming performance or exhibition opportunity.

For Reference

The following funding opportunities are currently closed.

Artists Now Relief Fund
For artists who live in the Bay Area, who have been financially impacted by COVID-19, who are POC, Women, or identify as LGBTQIA+. The Artists Now Fund is now closed. For additional support, visit YBCA’s Artist Power Center.

California Arts Council Administrators of Color Fellowship
The School of Arts and Culture at MHP (SOAC), in partnership with the California Arts Council (CAC) and SVCreates, is administering a pilot program with the goal of uplifting an inclusive workforce and supporting the vibrancy of organizations that create and preserve the cultural identities of all California communities. Closed Aug 14, 2020. This fellowship is not being offered in 2021, visit the California Arts Council website for additional grant opportunities.

California Relief Fund for Artists and Cultural Practitioners
To help artists and cultural practitioners (including fine and performing artists, teaching artists, culture bearers, and maker-based sole or collective creative entrepreneurs) who comprise the various and diverse cultural communities of the state of California. Closed Aug 18, 2020. For additional support, see CCI’s list of Emergency Resources for Artists & Freelancers.

Akonadi Foundation So Love Can Win
Supporting Oakland-based efforts led by Black, Indigenous and people of color using organizing, healing, arts and culture, and journalism and narrative strategies to fortify the resilience and vitality of communities hit hardest by the impacts of Covid-19. In difficult times, Oakland’s organizers, culture bearers, and healers not only provide solace and support, but also, continue to build a collective vision of safety and justice beyond crisis. Rapid-response grants up to $10,000. This fund is now closed, and all awards have been committed. Grant seekers can review Akonadi’s external resources page to explore funding opportunities.

National Arts & Disability Center California 2020 Grant Cycle
The purpose of the Arts and Accessibility Program is to support the inclusion of artists and audiences with disabilities into the arts community. This grant is not being offered in 2021, visit the California Arts Council website for additional grant opportunities. 

California Black Voices Project Request for Proposal
Minnesota Street Project Foundation: five $10,000 grants to California Black artists or curators to create or curate artwork(s) for an exhibition specifically for this award. Closed Aug 31, 2020

The Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation Relief Grants for the Arts
The foundation will prioritize unrestricted support for arts organizations that: Amplify the perspective of marginalized artists and communities; Present challenging, contemporary works of art, including dance, music, performance, and the visual arts; Work in Alameda, Marin, and/or San Francisco counties; Operate with an annual budget of $2.5 million or less; Have not already received funding from the foundation in 2020. Relief funds will be issued as one-time grants ranging from $2,500 – $10,000, with consideration given to organizational budget size. Closed Sep 3, 2020. Check back in March 2021 for further details about future funding opportunities.

Alliance for CA Traditional Arts: Hardly Strictly Music Relief Fund: Bay Area
The Fund is made possible by Hardly Strictly Bluegrass to support the Bay Area roots music community during the COVID-19 pandemic. Eligible applicants can apply for grants up to $2,000. Closed Sep 14, 2020. Visit ACTA’s website for additional opportunities.

City of San José Coronavirus Relief Fund: Artists
The San José Fund, a partnership between the City of San José Office of Cultural Affairs and the Center for Cultural Innovation (CCI), is a response to the financial impact on professional artists caused by the COVID-19 economic shutdown. Closed Sep 29, 2020. For additional support, see CCI’s list of Emergency Resources for Artists & Freelancers.

Oakland CARES Fund
The CARES Arts Fund is a response to the financial impact on professional artists and nonprofit arts organizations in Oakland caused by the COVID-19 economic shutdown. Closed Oct 9, 2020. For additional support, see CCI’s list of Emergency Resources for Artists & Freelancers.

Grants for Arts Equity
Minnesota Street Project Foundation is awarding grants for capacity-building initiatives to Bay Area visual arts organizations serving Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and other underserved audiences as part of its grantmaking programs to address the systemic racism in the art world. Closed Nov 20, 2020

Fleishhacker Foundation Special Arts Grant
The Foundation awards Special Arts Grants to mid-sized arts and culture organizations with annual budgets between $750,000 and $2,500,000 that are located and offer programming in the San Francisco Bay Area. In response to the impact of COVID-19 on the local arts community, grants will be awarded for general operating support during the upcoming spring 2021 review cycle. Call for LOIs closed Nov 20, 2020. For additional support, visit the Fleishhacker Foundation website for more grant opportunities.

Creative Capital joins with other grantmakers to form Artist Relief
Artist Relief will distribute $5,000 grants to artists facing dire financial emergencies due to COVID-19; serve as an ongoing informational resource. Cycle IX closed Dec 10, 2020. For additional support, visit Artist Relief’s list of resources.

Rauschenberg Medical Emergency Grants
New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) in partnership with the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation will administer the program, which provides one-time grants of up to $5,000 for unexpected medical, dental, and mental health emergencies. Cycle 5 closed Jan 6, 2021