In an effort to help protect Louisiana’s critical cultural institutions, the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities has launched the Louisiana Culture Care Fund, a new grant program providing emergency relief funding to humanities organizations impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. With funding provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities, awards will range between $3,000 and $20,000, and applications will open Monday, May 4.
With the passage of the $2.2 trillion CARES Act economic stabilization plan, the NEH received $75 million in emergency funding. Approximately $30 million of the NEH funds were then distributed to the state humanities councils for support of humanities organizations in their home states. According to a recent survey conducted by the LEH, cultural organizations in Louisiana are facing at least $10 million in lost revenue as a result of closures, loss of donations and more.
“We are grateful to our friends and colleagues at the NEH and the Federation of State Humanities Councils for working to secure these funds for Louisiana and all of our country’s great humanities organizations,” said Miranda Restovic, executive director and president of the LEH. “Our state’s amazing cultural resources are threatened like never before, and we are working to get these funds to them quickly and efficiently.”
Louisiana Culture Care Fund grants are available to 501(c)(3) non-profit cultural organizations in Louisiana with a strong humanities focus, such as museums, historic sites and archives. The NEH defines the humanities as including the fields of history, philosophy, literature, foreign languages, linguistics, comparative religion, ethics, archaeology, jurisprudence, art history, theory and criticism and philosophical and historical approaches to social sciences. For more information about how the humanities are defined, visit. www.neh.gov/about.
The funds are designated for operational expenses, including staff retention (payroll and benefits), rent, mortgage and utilities. Awards will be based on the annual operating budget of the applicant organization. Applications will not open until Monday, May 4, providing organizations time to review the necessary documentation and prepare their application. A sample application may be found here.
The LEH especially encourages applications from rural and underserved areas of the state, but applications are welcome regardless of an organization’s size and location. The granting period will run through June 30, 2020, or until funds are expended. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, and organizations will receive notification of award or rejection within 10 days of submission.
All Louisiana Culture Care Fund applications will be subject to the same review process based on the following criteria:
- All applicants must submit their federal tax identification/EIN number, DUNS number, and copies of their form 990 and IRS 501(c)(3) determination letter.
- Estimated annual audience
- Record of strong humanities programming
- Organization size
- Geographic location and distribution (rural, underserved areas of Louisiana)
For more information about the Louisiana Culture Care Fund, including eligibility requirements, visit www.leh.org. Ineligible organizations are encouraged to apply directly to the NEH through NEH CARES: Cultural Organizations, a fund created with the remaining 60 percent of the CARES ACT funds made available to the NEH. Organizations with a strong arts focus are encouraged to contact the Louisiana Division of the Arts for grants provided through the National Endowment for the Arts.