Virginia CARES Emergency Relief Grant

  • WATCH ONLINE - CARES Act Funding for the Arts and Humanities in Virginia Information Session Webinar


    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act recognizes that the nonprofit arts industry is an important sector of America’s economy. Virginia Commission for the Arts (VCA), with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, has developed a program to expedite funds to help save jobs in the arts sector and keep the doors open to organizations that add value to Virginia's economy and bolster the creative and cultural vitality of our communities.

  • ONLINE APPLICATION DEADLINE: Friday, May 8, 2020 by 5:00PM (EST).

  • Eligibile Activites

    The Virginia CARES grant program will be carried out through one-time grants to eligible non-profit arts organizations. These funds are to be used for three main purposes:

    1. Salary support (full or partial) for one or more individuals
    2. Fees for artists and/or contractual personnel
    3. Facility costs, such as rent and utilities

  • Eligible Applicants must meet all four (4) requirements for funding

    1. Organizations must be a 501 (c)(3) organization, whose primary mission/function is the arts, are incorporated in Virginia, and whose physical location and home season are in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
    2. Arts organizations that received a General Operating Support Grant, Project Grant, or Artists in Education Grant from the VCA in the current fiscal year FY2020 (July, 1, 2019-June 30, 2020).
    3. The organization will be in operation to receive and apply the funds, as indicated in the application.
    4. Eligible applicants must be in good standing with their FY20 award.
  • Ineligible Applicants

    • Organizations whose primary mission or focus is not on the arts and culture
    • For-profit organizations
    • K-12 Schools (public or private)
    • Colleges and universities
    • Units of government, including divisions or departments of local, state or federal agencies
    • Auxiliary/ partnering organizations (i.e. Friends of ABC)
    • Individuals
    NOTE: In an effort to increase equity in funding and maximize the impact of stimulus funds, organizations who apply for and are awarded direct grants from any of the following organizations may not receive additional funds from the VCA.
    1. National Endowment for the Arts
    2. National Endowment for the Humanities
    3. Corporation for Public Broadcasting
    4. Institute for Museum and Library Services
    5. Virginia Humanities
    Organizations who are eligible to apply to any of the above organizations directly, may submit an application to the VCA, where it will remain on file, pending the notification and outcome of the application to that organization. Please verify those eligibility requirements with any/all of the above organizations. Upon notification of approval or denial, the application submitted to the VCA would be immediately vetted and processed accordingly.
  • Amount of Assistance

    The Commission intends to make awards that will impact a broad constituency. There is no match requirement.

    • $5,000 – Major Arts Organizations *
    • $3,500 – Organizations with budgets of $1,000,000 and above
    • $2,000 – Organizations with budgets of $125,000 to 999,999
    • $1,000 – Organizations with budgets up to $124,999
    * Major Arts Organizations: American Shakespeare Center, Barter Foundation, Chrysler Museum of Art, Richmond Ballet, Richmond Symphony, Roanoke Symphony Orchestra , Signature Theatre, Taubman Museum of Art, Virginia Arts Festival, Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art, Virginia Opera Association, Virginia Repertory Theatre, Virginia Stage Company, Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Visual Arts Center of Richmond, Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts

  • How to Apply

    To apply, visit the Virginia Commission for the Arts' Online Grants System, here: Enter your organization's email and password. Once on your “Dashboard”, scroll down to the Virginia CARES grant opportunity and click APPLY. The application will be available from April 23, 2020 - May 8, 2020 (5PM EST).

  • Grant Contract

    Each grant application must be authorized by an individual with the authority to act on behalf of the applicant organization. The Certification of Assurances is the applicant’s agreement to carry out what is described in the application and to comply with the Grant Conditions. When the Commission awards a grant, an award letter will be uploaded to the applicant's "Dashboard" under “Documents” with the payment schedule for that grant. Major changes in activities, personnel, or budget must be approved in advance by the Commission.

  • Required Attachments

    1. Profit & Loss Statement or Audit from the Most Recently Completed Fiscal Year (June 30, 2019) or Calendar Year (December 31, 2019)
    2. Virginia W-9 Form
  • Application Review

    Virginia CARES grant applications will be reviewed to verify:

    1. the organization is fully eligible to apply and receive the funds
    2. the organization intends to remain in operation in order to receive the funds and utilize funds as indicated
    3. the organization is in good standing with its FY20 grant award
    Applications from organizations that are not eligible to apply to National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, Institute of Museums and Library Services, Corporation of Public Broadcasting, or Virginia Humanities, will be prioritized. Organizations who are eligible to apply to any of the above funding entities, may still submit an VCA CARES application, but must indicate all those funding entities to whom they have also applied. Upon notification of the award from those funding entities, VCA will process those applications accordingly.

  • Questions? Visit our website at or contact:
    Lucas Hall, Deputy Director
    Virginia Commission for the Arts
    Main Street Centre, 600 East Main Street, Suite 330
    Richmond, VA 23219