COVID-19 Updates & Resources
Five Wings Arts Council is committed to assisting artists and arts organizations in our region as we respond to the COVID-19 outbreak.We believe that the arts have a vital role in helping our communities cope with the impact of the COVID pandemic, both immediately and in the long term. We want them to emerge stronger and more relevant than ever from this crisis.
This page provides updates about FWAC services as well as a list of resources to artists and arts and culture organizations (a.k.a. Small Businesses!). We will strive to keep this page updated, but also encourage you to stay tuned to Five Wings Arts Council via social media and email for the latest on opportunities and information related to COVID-19 and the arts.
UPDATES ( as of April 3, 2020) :
- GRANT APPLICATION DEADLINES EXTENDED
- CAAP GRANT 25% MATCH REQUIREMENTS REMOVED
- CANCELLED OR POSTPONED PROJECTS
- FINAL REPORT DEADLINES
- ZOOM LICENSES FOR YOUR ARTS ORGANIZATION
- FAST TRACK PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FUND
- FWAC STAFF IS HERE FOR YOU!
- BE INFORMED AND STAY HEALTHY!
As of June 1 2020, all Community Grant programs are ON HOLD, while Five Wings Arts Council waits to learn about reductions to our FY21 funding allocation from the MN State Legislature. As soon as we have received notification of funding levels, we will revise our budget in accordance with the amounts and modify our grant distribution plan. Please be assured that we will still grant funding support for arts programming in our region. At this time, we know it will be less than in FY20, but do not have confirmation of how much less. It is our intention to continue to be as supportive as possible, both in terms of funding as well as training and capacity building. We also pledge to be flexible in working with you as you navigate the CVOID 19 realities of being an arts presenter and producer.
If you'd like to be notified the FWAC Community Grant program reopens and the status of funding for projects for FY21 (July 1, 2020 - June 30, 2021), please email Grants & Program Coordinator, Vicki Chepulis at email@example.com.
GRANT APPLICATION DEADLINES EXTENDED:
- Applications for Small Grants, School Arts Project Grants, and Individual Artist Grants are being accepted on an ongoing basis.
CANCELED OR POSTPONED PROJECTS:
We encourage any grantee that has had to change plans because of the current uncertainty to contact us to talk about changing the details of their grant to allow them to work without undue hardship. We plan to be as flexible as the law allows us in this regard. Know that it is our intention to make your job easier, not more difficult and stressful.
FINAL REPORT DEADLINES:
All Final Report deadlines between March 1 and July 1 will be extended 60 days. We will evaluate for those with reports due after that time, as more information becomes available to us.
ZOOM LICENSES FOR YOUR ARTS ORGANIZATION:
FWAC will pay for and secure ZOOM licenses for any non-profit arts organization in our region. Zoom is an easy to use resource that will allow you to host online board/committee meetings, create online programming content, and much more. If you’re interested in receiving a license, email firstname.lastname@example.org
FAST TRACK PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FUND:
Grants up to $500 are available for artists and arts organization leaders who seek training to improve their skills to do their jobs more effectively in this COVID19 social distancing/online world. For example, these funds could be used to pay for registration fees for online courses in running effective online meetings, or hosting online music concert house parties, or??? (we’d love to hear YOUR ideas!)
Contact FWAC Grants & Program Coordinator, Vicki Chepulis, to learn about how to access these funds. Call 701-200-1375 or email Vicki at email@example.com.
STAY INFORMED AND BE HEALTHY:
FWAC staff members continue to work, although the office is closed to the public. Don’t hesitate to reach out to connect with us via phone or email.
We encourage all of you to stay updated with official public health sources. The Minnesota Department of Health COVID-19 page is:
RESOURCES FOR ARTISTS & CREATIVE WORKERS:
INDIVIDUAL ARTIST SUPPORT:
Don’t forget to check into Minnesota Unemployment Insurance: https://www.uimn.org/applicants/needtoknow/news-updates/covid-19.jsp
If you are an artist or creative worker, this central hub is for you: https://springboardforthearts.org/coronavirus/emergency-relief-fund-resources/
Here are some resources for possible relief for artists:
- Authors League Fund
- American Guild of Musical Artists (AGMA) Relief Fund
- Anonymous Was a Woman Emergency Relief Grant
- Arts and Culture Leaders of Color Emergency Fund
- CERF+ Emergency Assistance
- Comedy Gives Back
- ConvertKit: COVID 19 Grant [$500]
- Dramatists Guild Foundation Emergency Grants
- Foundation for Contemporary Arts
- Grammy MusiCares
- Jazz Foundation of America
- Joan Mitchell Foundation
- Musicians Foundation
- Patreon Weird Stream-a-thon
- PEN American Writers’ Emergency Fund
- Rauschenberg Emergency Grants
- Shade Literary Arts Queer Writers of Color Relief Fund
- Sweet Relief COVID-19 Fund
- Tegan and Sara Foundation Community Grants
- The Actors Fund Emergency Financial Assistance
- Women Arts Emergency Funds
- Writers Emergency Assistance Fund
Plus, this article was updated on 3/30/2020 and it has information about Small Business Administration Emergency Loans (these are not the kinds of loans you most likely will need to pay back, but rather federally supported/forgivable “loans”): https://learningtosee.jenie.org/sba-disaster-loan-artists-edition-what-you-need-to-know/
RESOURCES FOR ARTS NONPROFITS:
FEDERAL AND STATE GOVERNMENT RESOURCES:
- Both the federal and state governments have passed legislation intended to help small businesses (including nonprofits) and the unemployed during the COVID-19 crisis. Here are a few places with very good, centralized information for arts nonprofits to help you navigate the opportunities that are being offered:
- Small Business Association Disaster Assistance Program
- More information on Loans Available for Nonprofits in the CARES Act (Public Law 116-136) (It’s our understanding that these are “forgivable loans” )
THE INDEPENDENT SECTOR:
VERY GOOD centralized information center for nonprofits (national):
- CARES Act: How to Apply for Nonprofit Relief Funds
- National Council of Nonprofits: VERY GOOD explanation of resources for nonprofits
- Recording of Webinar: Federal Coronavirus Relief Bills: What Do They Mean for Nonprofits?
- and Slide deck from webinar: "Federal Coronavirus Relief Bills: What Do They Mean for Nonprofits?"
Other good information from the National Council of Nonprofits on specific topics:
- Analysis of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) (Pub. L. 116-136)
- Chart: Loans Available for Nonprofits in the CARES Act
- How Nonprofits Can Utilize the New Federal Laws Dealing with COVID-19, Nonprofit Quarterly, Mar. 26, 2020
- Self-Insured Nonprofits and Unemployment Insurance, David Heinen, North Carolina Center for Nonprofits
- Analysis of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act
- Nonprofits and Coronavirus, COVID-19
- Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
MINNESOTA COUNCIL OF NONPROFITS:
- CENTRALIZED INFORMATION FOR NONPROFITS IN MINNESOTA
- (***keep scrolling down on their page for many useful links***)
- Unemployment Insurance Information and Updates
WHERE TO LOOK FOR SPECIAL COVID-19 GRANTS FOR ARTISTS AND NONPROFITS IN MINNESOTA:
- MINNESOTA DISASTER RECOVERY FUND (MDRF) FOR CORONAVIRUS, HOUSED AT THE ST. PAUL AND MINNESOTA FOUNDATION IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE MINNESOTA COUNCIL OF FOUNDATIONS
- The fund launched with $4.4 million in contributions from many philanthropic partners, and has since grown to $5.2 million. The MDRF advisory committee, made up of leaders from across the state, made its first round of grants this week, awarding $2 million to 11 organizations throughout Minnesota. The advisory committee meets weekly to advise and recommend additional grants to address ongoing needs statewide.
- MINNESOTA INITIATIVE FUNDS
- Resources from the MDRF (Minnesota Disaster Relief Fund described above) fund will be, in part, distributed to communities through the state’s six united funds working to improve Greater Minnesota. Here in Region Five, we are served by the Initiative Foundation, based in Little Falls.
- OTTO BREMER TRUST (OBT) $50 MILLION
- COMMUNITY BENEFIT FINANCIAL COMPANY EMERGENCY FUND
- In response to COVID-19, the Otto Bremer Trust (OBT) has established a $50 million emergency fund through its Community Benefit Financial Company (CBFC) subsidiary to provide financial support to Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and Montana nonprofits and other community organizations impacted by and responding to the pandemic. The fund will provide resources in the form of short-term loans, lines of credit, and emergency grants. Qualifications: All nonprofit organizations in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and Montana are welcome to apply for emergency funding. An application does not guarantee funding; we will evaluate the applications on a case-by-case basis. The fund is designated for emergency requests only and is separate from our normal grant making process. Non-emergency requests should go through our regular application process.
- PROPEL FOR NONPROFITS
- Propel is providing no-cost technical assistance to nonprofits and free consultations with regard to finance, strategy, and governance in the wake of the pandemic.
Message from Kate Barr (President of Propel) about Forgivable Loans for Nonprofits:
On Tuesday, March 31, the Small Business Administration (SBA) announced its new Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Nonprofits with less than 500 employees are eligible for – and should take advantage of – this forgivable loan program. If the COVID-19 pandemic has caused economic damage for your organization, we encourage you to apply if you feel it would help you pay your employees.
A quick overview of the Paycheck Protection Program, from the SBA:
- It’s designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses and nonprofits to keep their workers on the payroll.
- SBA will forgive the amount of the loan that is used to pay employees and eligible expenses during the 8 weeks after the loan is made. You can bring employees back from furlough, layoff, or reduction in hours or pay from this program.
- Loans will be fully forgiven if the funds are used for payroll costs, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities (due to likely high subscription, at least 75% of the forgiven amount must have been used for payroll). Loan payments will also be deferred for six months. No collateral or personal guarantees are required. Neither the SBA nor banks will charge small businesses or nonprofits any fees.
Start with these five steps:
- Read the program information about the purpose, eligibility, and guidelines for the PPP.
- Contact your bank to inquire about the PPP and get on their queue for the application. Applications will open as soon as this Friday, April 3, and the program will be available through June 30, 2020.
- Read the Application Form.
- Gather the information and documents needed to be ready to apply:
- 2019 payroll records: Your last 12 months of payroll
- 2019 employee documentation: 1099s for your 2019 employees and independent contractors who would otherwise be an employee of your business.
- Healthcare cost records: All health insurance premiums paid by your nonprofit under a group health plan.
- Retirement documentation: Your nonprofit’s retirement plan funding paid for by the company.
- Other allowable expenses: Information on amounts paid for rent, interest on a mortgage, and utilities for the last 12 months.
- See FMA's PPP Toolkit for a program calculator, script, list of SBA lenders, and board resolution template.
- Make sure your board is on board. While it's in your interest to apply quickly, do be sure to check in.
- Note: Yes, this program is through the Small Business Administration, but this is not a typical SBA loan application, so do not be deterred by this. This program is designed to be as streamlined as possible to ensure nonprofits and small businesses can retain or quickly rehire employees.
- Please know that you won’t be under the microscope as you submit the application. There’s no penalty for a “good enough” application. Everyone – nonprofits, boards, and banks – are all figuring this out. We know that the guidelines, process, and timeline will get clearer over the next few weeks. Other CARES Act resources for nonprofits can be found on Propel's COVID-19 resource page.
Kate Barr, President & CEO
Two other key sources about COVID-19 and the arts are:
OTHER RESOURCES FOR ARTS LEADERS:
- Americans for the Arts: Resources and Response Center
- Momentum Nonprofit Partners
- National Endowment for the Arts
- Events and Fundraising:
- Blackbaud: Event and Fundraising Resources During Possible Impact
- Startups and Small Businesses: Resources and Webinars
- Technology: WASH YOUR HANDS! Download this famous Ottis Redding song and make handwashing FUN!