Cultural Relief Fund: Organizations
One-time grants of up to $5,000 are available to King County, WA cultural organizations for unexpected costs and losses related to the COVID-19 virus. The first round of funding will be available April 1 through June 5 (extended from original deadline of May 15); apply at any time within that time frame. A panel will review applications weekly and notify you within ten business days about the status of your application.
Steps to Apply
1 About the Cultural Relief Fund
1 About the Cultural Relief Fund
4Culture has committed a total of $1 million to support King County cultural organizations and workers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, including $450,000 to organizations in this initial response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Through an additional allocation of $1 million by the King County Council, 4Culture will be able to support additional organizations that apply by June 5. Organizations that have already been awarded Cultural Relief funding may not apply for additional funds at this time. When this round of funding concludes, 4Culture will evaluate the need for further support, and we anticipate offering grant funds for cultural organizations to reopen and restart their activities.
Grants up to $5,000 are available for cultural organizations that have suffered significant financial hardship from the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus. Applicants must be cultural organizations in King County, with a primary mission related to one or more of 4Culture’s funding areas: arts, heritage, and preservation.
You will need to complete a simple application and respond to questions about your need for funding, which was unforeseen prior to the COVID-19 outbreak. Once you’ve pulled together your materials, the simplified application will take about 30 minutes to complete.
Public Benefit: Why It Matters
Our funding comes from public Lodging Taxes, and our mission is to reinvest these into the community. If awarded funds, you will sign an agreement with 4Culture requiring that you indicate the public benefit of your organization’s work to the residents of King County.
2 Are You Eligible?
2 Are You Eligible?
All applicants must meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Any organization whose primary mission relates to arts, heritage, or preservation may apply for Cultural Relief funds. However, if you are awarded funds and your organization is not a nonprofit or public development authority, you must find a fiscal sponsor before you can claim your award. If you are unable or do not wish to secure a fiscal sponsor, you may apply for Cultural Relief funding as an individual.
- You must have a minimum 2-year track record of programming or activity.
- You must be located in and serving King County, Washington.
- You must demonstrate a direct financial impact from the outbreak of the COVID 19 virus, including but not limited to: loss of income (e.g. ticket sales, admissions, earned revenue, or rental fees) or loss of opportunity (e.g. cancelation of events, including fundraising events; cancellation or postponement of programs).
- You must not be a 4Culture staff, Advisory Committee, or Board member, or a 4Culture Cultural Relief Fund panelist during the period of review.
- Eligibility to re-apply: If you applied prior to May 15 but were not selected for funding, you do not need to do anything. Your application will remain in consideration, with the assumption that your financial hardship has continued. If your situation has significantly changed, you can submit a new application between Saturday, May 16, and Friday, June 5 at 5:00 pm. If you submit a new application, your original application will be withdrawn from consideration.
All eligible applications will be reviewed using the following selection criteria:
- Financial Hardship: every organization will experience financial impacts at this time, but some will suffer acute financial hardship. Applicants are asked to clearly state the financial challenges they face, which may include but are not limited to:
- Costs to comply with official social distancing policies such as additional cleaning, reduced capacity to allow reduced audience proximity, technology purchases to support online content or remote work of employees, etc.
- Disproportionate reduction in 2020 revenue as the result of loss of income or opportunities between March 1 and May 31, 2020, as demonstrated in a program or event schedule and an adopted 2020 budget. For organizations that submitted an application prior to May 15, and reported on March–April impacts, we will assume financial hardships continued through May.
- Limited or no access to credit, rent abatement, or other sources of COVID-19 relief funds from other funders or from local municipal government.
- Current liabilities – credit, loans, accounts payable – that are equal to or greater than financial assets as demonstrated by a profit and loss statement.
- Emergency: applicant demonstrates an emergency need and a timely use of grant funds. Applicants that demonstrate one or more of the following emergency circumstances will be given priority:
- Imminent loss of cultural space due to the inability to make monthly rent, mortgage, or utility payments as demonstrated by an eviction notice from the landlord, a notice of repossession from a financial lender, and/or a notice to cease service from a local utility.
- The inability to make payroll through May 31, 2020, due to a lack of financial income or reserves as demonstrated by the difference between a current cash statement and the most recent payroll expenses.
- The inability to pay healthcare premiums for employees due to a lack of financial income or reserves as demonstrated by the difference between the current cash statement and the most recent monthly bill from a healthcare provider.
- Public Benefit: applicant offers substantial public benefit in a typical year. For 4Culture’s purposes, public benefit describes your organization’s efforts to make your events, activities, or programs more accessible to King County residents, particularly underserved communities. Examples include, but are not limited to, free or discounted tickets for students/seniors; scholarships to educational programs or free/discounted educational programs; outreach efforts to young audiences, seniors, communities of color, communities of disability, or non-English speakers; free or pay-what-you-can performances; etc.
Applicants who reside outside of Seattle or in a census tract designated as “40% highest need” by the 2018 Community of Opportunity Composite Index will receive priority and, if selected, will be allocated additional funding in this program. Managed through the Prevention Division of King County Public Health, Communities of Opportunity is a partnership and initiative of the Seattle Foundation and King County. It is used to identify areas in King County experiencing the highest levels of need.
3 Helping You Succeed
3 Helping You Succeed
Translation and Assistance
If you anticipate a barrier to your participation due to limited English writing ability, visual impairment, or would like to request assistance to access this application, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 206-296-7580 or TTY 711.
Si anticipa una barrera para su participación debido a la capacidad limitada de escritura en inglés, discapacidad visual, o desea solicitar asistencia para acceder a esta aplicación, contáctenos en email@example.com o 206-296-7580 o TTY 711.
We will make every effort to ensure equal access to services for all applicants. If you need assistance or require different forms of access, please contact us.
The application must be filled out online. We are available by email and phone to assist you. Please don’t hesitate to contact us.
You may find it helpful to review the narrative questions and other requirements. See the “Apply” section below to familiarize yourself with the questions you will be asked.
For general and technical support:
4 After You Submit
4 After You Submit
Once you have determined that you are eligible for the Cultural Relief Fund and have submitted your application, you will receive email notification letting you know whether or not you have received funding within 10 business days.
4Culture will first review all applications to ensure eligibility. We then will facilitate a panel review process of eligible applications on a weekly basis. The panel, comprised of independent professionals and citizen representatives, will review and score applications for funding recommendations.
Applications that are not funded within the weekly panel review will remain under consideration in subsequent weekly panel reviews through April and May, and there will be no need to reapply during this time frame. However, applications from additional organizations will continue to be accepted as needs arise.
Contracts and Payment
If your application is awarded funding, a grant manager will ensure you receive a contract and they will help you access payment. If you are awarded funds we will ask you to verify your financial hardship and emergency with supporting documentation depending on your situation such as cash balance statements, profit and loss statements, and/or written correspondence between your landlord, financial institution, or utility provider.
Requirements and Appeals
Learn about what will be required if you are awarded a grant, and about the process for appeal of a 4Culture decision.
Once you’ve started your application, you can save after each step and sign out—your application will be saved as a draft that you can continue to work on. Once you click “Submit,” your application is final. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions during the process.
What’s in the Application?
- Please make sure that your Account Profile is up-to-date, especially contact information, as well as demographic information for your organization. The demographic information is optional—we use this to help us understand how well we are doing in our efforts to serve all communities in King County.
- The application requires answering basic questions about your organization, your work in the cultural field, and the communities you work within and/or support.
- You must answer several questions about your financial losses and other resources being pursued at this time.
- You will be asked to answer the following questions in the application narrative:
- Summarize how the COVID 19 pandemic has affected your organization and how you are complying with mandatory social distancing policies. What is of most concern to your organization at this time?
- Titles and dates of cancelled events/activities (e.g., performances, classes, exhibitions, readings, screenings, fundraisers, meetings, research, capital projects, etc.).
- Financial impact—how much revenue has your organization lost between March and April, 2020? How much revenue do you anticipate losing between May 1–31, 2020? Please make clear what is actual (money already spent to develop or produce an event/activity) and what is estimated (money lost because the event/activity didn’t happen).
- How would your organization use these grant funds from 4Culture?
- What other sources of financial relief are you seeking at this time?
- Describe the public benefit your organization offers in a typical year, what public benefit you are unable to offer due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and what, if any, additional public benefit you are offering during this time. (For 4Culture’s purposes, public benefit describes your organization’s efforts to make your events, activities, or programs more accessible to King County residents, particularly underserved communities. Examples include, but are not limited to, free or discounted tickets for students/seniors; scholarships to educational programs or free/discounted educational programs; outreach efforts to young audiences, seniors, communities of color, communities of disability, or non-English speakers; free or pay-what-you-can performances; etc.).
- You will request a specific amount of funding. The need for financial support during this time is greater than we’ve experienced in our 50+ year history. Given our limited resources, request amounts will be capped at $5,000 in this funding round.