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The African American Arts Alliance has assembled this list of resources and funding for artists and organizations of all types.  

Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVO) Update

The Small Business Administration has released additional details for the Shuttered Venue Operators Grants. The Shuttered Venue Operators Grant program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act, signed into law on December 27, 2020. The program includes $15 billion in grants to shuttered venues, to be administered by the SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance.

Eligible applicants may qualify for SVO Grants equal to 45% of their gross earned revenue, with the maximum amount available for a single grant award of $10 million. $2 billion is reserved for eligible applications with up to 50 full-time employees.


Eligible entities include:

  • Live venue operators or promoters

  • Theatrical producers

  • Live performing arts organization operators

  • Relevant museum operators, zoos and aquariums who meet specific criteria.

  • Motion picture theater operators

  • Talent representatives, and

  • Each business entity owned by an eligible entity that also meets the eligibility requirements.

Other requirements of note:

  • Must have been in operation as of February 29, 2020

  • Venue or promoter must not have applied for or received a PPP loan on or after
    December 27, 2020

Resources for Organizations

ArtsReady – Preparing for Potential Impact of the Coronavirus

Lawyers for the Creative Arts – Coronavirus Legal Help in Illinois

Springboard for the Arts – Principles for Ethical Cancellation


Grantmakers in the Arts - COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and Arts Funding

Theatre Communications Group – Coronavirus Preparedness for Theatres

CERF+ – Artist Business Continuity Planning

Resources for Individuals

Emergency Funding Opportunities - 3Arts 

Emergency Relief Programs - Alliance of Artist Communities – 


COVID-19 & Freelance Artists - For Freelance Artists

Actors Fund - National human services organization (with a Chicago office) that provides emergency financial assistance, affordable housing, health care and insurance counseling, senior care, secondary career development. These services are designed for performing arts and entertainment professionals.

Adolph & Esther Gottlieb Emergency Grant - Interim financial assistance to qualified artists whose needs are the result of an unforeseen, catastrophic incident, and who lack the resources to meet that situation.


Arts Leaders of Color Emergency Fund - BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) artists and administrators (consultants, facilitators, box office staff, seasonal/temporary employees, etc.) who have been financially strained due to COVID-19. 


Blues Foundation - Special fund provides immediate resources to full-time blues musicians whose revenue streams have been severely diminished by the current coronavirus pandemic. 


Chicago Federation of Musicians - Emergency financial relief for members in good standing of the Chicago Federation of Musicians, Local 10-208.


Chicago Theatre Workers Relief Fund - developed by the League of Chicago Theatres and The Saints, this fund is intended to help Chicago area theater professionals replace lost income due to theater closures.


Creative Capital - A list of resources for artists and arts organizations affected by the COVID-19 outbreak.


Equal Sound Corona Relief Fund - Musicians who have lost income from cancelled shows as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant - Grants to visual or performing artists who have unanticipated, sudden opportunities to present their work to the public when there is insufficient time to seek other sources of funding or incur unexpected or unbudgeted expenses for projects close to completion with committed exhibition or performance dates.

Jazz Foundation of America - Musician's emergency fund for housing assistance, pro bono medical care, disaster relief, and direct financial support in times of crisis.


Joan Mitchell Foundation - Emergency support to US-based visual artists working in the mediums of painting, sculpture, and/or drawing, who have suffered significant losses after natural or man-made disasters that have affected their community. 


Musicians Foundation - One-time assistance to professional musicians in the US for a period of acute need (e.g. medical crisis, crime victimization, catastrophic events, etc.)

Sweet Relief - A donor-directed fund with a limited amount of support to be used specifically for musicians and music industry workers affected by the coronavirus.


The Dancers Fund - Financial assistance to dance professionals dealing with critical health issues creating a significant financial, emergency, or catastrophic hardship. 


The Haven Foundation - Financial assistance to artists who have a health crisis; grants are one-year, and the financial amount provided is to the discretion of the Foundation.


WomenArts - A list of emergency funding for artists working in all art forms.

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