CARES Relief Funding for Artists

Posted by Assembly for the Arts ; Posted on 
CARES Relief Funding for Artists


Funding is available for independent, creative professionals that derive income from their art and are:

LOCAL: Reside in Cuyahoga County

PROFESSIONALLY CREATIVE:  Have been deriving income from creating, performing, teaching or assisting in the development of work in the disciplines of Craft, Dance, Design, Film, Media, Music, Theater & Performance, Traditional Arts, Visual Art, Writing, or Natural History/Natural Sciences prior to March 1, 2020

HAVE LOST INCOME: Lost income, or performance exhibition opportunities due to cancellations and closures after March 1, 2020 and have not received Pandemic Unemployment Assistance for those losses.

ADULTS: Are at least 18 years old

LEGAL RESIDENT: Can provide a SSN or tax ID number

Individuals that own, operate or serve in any executive-level position at a business applying for CARES funds through Arts Cleveland’s Performing Arts Business Relief program are ineligible.
Individuals that serve in an executive-level position at a nonprofit applying for or receiving CARES funds through CAC’s program are ineligible.
Employees of Arts Cleveland, Cuyahoga Arts & Culture (CAC) or Cuyahoga County are ineligible.
Only one application per artist will be accepted.

Distribution of Funds
Funding amounts will be determined based on the number of eligible applicants and will not exceed $2500.

* Due to limited funds, not all eligible applicants will receive a Cuyahoga CARES allocation. Funding allocations for individual artists will be determined based on income lost and unforeseen expenses resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and health-risk factors related to COVID-19.

Review Process
Applications will be reviewed after the deadline. Funds will be determined based on a set of criteria including reported percentage losses from 2019 income to 2020 income, continued expenses and other risk factors.

Priority will be given to those most impacted by pandemic closures including, artists providing services in high-risk environments without hazard pay and a high percentage of income losses due to business closures.

Expenses and Reporting
These funds are to support individuals who are facing economic hardships due to COVID-19 pandemic. Cuyahoga CARES for Artists funds are for expenses you have incurred and struggle to pay as a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic or related directives or executive orders between March 1, 2020 and December 30, 2020. Funds may not be used for costs that have been PREVIOUSLY COVERED by the federal government via prior CARES Act funding or other federal programs. Reporting expenses for Cuyahoga CARES that have been previously covered by other CARES Act funding dollars may result in returning your allocation to the federal government.

These funds may be used for:

Current and new living expenses
Childcare expenses
Rent, equipment and art materials
Other necessary items to maintain your artistic practice and future economic stability through that creative practice
These funds may not be used for:

Costs already covered by other CARES Act funded programs
Legal settlements
Workforce bonuses
Severance pay
Political campaigns or candidates
Illegal activity
Artists who receive relief funds may be required to report to Arts Cleveland on how funds were spent.

Hard Copy Request Forms
Paper request forms will be available for the Cuyahoga CARES for Artists program at an in-person workshop (TBA) or may be requested by Friday, November 6 to be sent by mail. Please contact Arts Cleveland at 216-575-0331 x132 to request a paper application by mail. A download and self-print option for request forms will also be available on the Arts Cleveland website.

Paper request forms must be mailed to Arts Cleveland, ATTN: Cuyahoga CARES, Artists, 1900 Superior Ave., Suite 130, Cleveland, OH 44114. Mailed forms must be postmarked no later than November 20, 2020. Applicants are responsible for their own postage. Arts Cleveland does not have the ability to accept paper request forms submitted in-person or via email.

Hard Copy Support Materials

Question 14 of the artist request form asks for proof of artistic career via url. If a URL with the artist’s work is not available, artists are required to provide basic documentation of their artistic practice. If mailing in a hard copy request form, please include no more than five (5) pages of printed material. Printed artistic work documentation can include images, literary writing and articles on your practice, with descriptions and dates.

Important note: Arts Cleveland cannot send or receive request forms for CARES funds via email. Forms and supporting material must only be submitted either the online portal or as a mailed hard copy, as outlined above.