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American Rescue Plan Grants to Organizations

Grants to USA Nonprofits, Agencies, School Districts,
and Tribes for Recovery in the Arts from COVID-19

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)

Deadline Date:

08/12/21 11:59 PM Eastern Time


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Grants to USA nonprofit organizations, government agencies, school districts, and tribes to support recovery in the arts sector from the effects of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Applicants are advised that required registrations may take several weeks to complete. Funding is intended for general operating support.

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (“Rescue Plan”) is designed to fuel the nation’s recovery from the devastating economic and health effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Funds allocated to the National Endowment for the Arts (“Arts Endowment”) in this historic legislation represent a significant commitment to the arts and a recognition of the value of the arts and culture sector to the nation’s economy and recovery.

Because Congress envisioned this aid to support the arts community, grant funds must be allocated to the arts program/departments/section/office or arts-related activities of the grant recipient.

The Arts Endowment intends to make awards that will impact a broad constituency. Applications are encouraged from a variety of eligible organizations including: organizations that serve populations that are underserved such as those whose opportunities to experience the arts are limited by ethnicity, economics, geography, or disability; organizations with small and medium-sized budgets; organizations from rural to urban communities; and organizations that may be applying for federal support through the Arts Endowment for the first time.

Unlike other Arts Endowment funding programs that offer project-based support, Rescue Plan funds are intended to support day-to-day business expenses/operating costs, and not specific programmatic activities. Support is limited to any or all of the following:

  • Salary support, full or partial, for one or more staff positions. Staff positions funded may not conduct work independent of the organization receiving funds.
  • Fees/stipends for artists and/or contractual personnel to support the services they provide for specific activities as part of organizational operations.
  • Artist fees/stipends should be related to work with a tangible outcome, such as performances, presentations, workshops, and/or the creation of artwork. This is considered a stipend to the artist for the work undertaken during the period of performance. Such work must not be performed independently of the organization receiving funds.
  • Facilities costs such as mortgage principal, rent, and utilities.
  • Costs associated with health and safety supplies for staff and/or visitors/audiences (e.g., personal protective equipment, cleaning supplies, hand sanitizer, etc.).
  • Marketing and promotion costs.

Rescue Plan funds may be used to support existing jobs, new jobs, or to restore jobs that were furloughed or eliminated due to the pandemic.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 197081

Number of Grants:

The Arts Endowment anticipates making approximately 800 awards.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Applicants may request a fixed grant amount for: $50,000, $100,000 or $150,000.

Term of Contract:

The Arts Endowment’s grant support may start no earlier than January 1, 2022. A grant period of up to two years is allowed.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3), U.S. organizations; units of state or local government; or federally recognized tribal communities or tribes may apply. Applicants may be arts organizations, local arts agencies, arts service organizations, local education agencies (school districts), and other organizations that can help advance the goals of the Arts Endowment.

To be eligible, the applicant organization must:

- Meet the Arts Endowment’s Legal Requirements, including nonprofit, tax-exempt status at the time of application. (All organizations must apply directly on their own behalf. Applications through a fiscal sponsor/agent are not allowed. See more information on fiscal sponsors/agents .)
- Have completed a three-year history of arts programming prior to the application deadline. For the purpose of defining eligibility, "three-year history" refers to when an organization began its programming and not when it incorporated or received nonprofit, tax-exempt status. Programming is not required to have taken place during consecutive years.
- Have submitted acceptable Final Report packages by the due date(s) for all Arts Endowment grant(s) previously received.

The Arts Endowment is committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and fostering mutual respect for the diverse beliefs and values of all individuals and groups, including:

- Historically Black Colleges and Universities,
- Tribal Colleges and Universities,
- American Indian and Alaska Native tribes,
- African American Serving Institutions,
- Hispanic Serving Institutions,
- Asian American and Pacific Islander communities, and
- Organizations that support the independence and lifelong inclusion of people with disabilities.

Proposals may focus on reaching a particular constituency; however, they may not be exclusionary under national civil rights laws and policies prohibiting discrimination. This extends to hiring practices and audience engagement activities.

Eligible organizations that received CARES Act funding from the Arts Endowment may apply to the Rescue Plan’s Grants to Organizations program as long as there are no overlapping costs.

Eligible local arts agencies may either apply to the Rescue Plan’s Grants to Locals Arts Agencies for Subgranting program OR to the Rescue Plan’s Grants to Organizations program for general operating support.

An organization whose primary purpose is to channel resources (financial, human, or other) to an affiliated organization is not eligible to apply if the affiliated organization submits its own application. This prohibition applies even if each organization has its own 501(c)(3) status. For example, the "Friends of ABC Museum" may not apply if the ABC Museum applies.

The Arts Endowment does not fund direct grants to individuals.

Pre-Application Information:

Because the Arts Endowment anticipates a large number of applications for this funding opportunity, applications will be submitted in two separate groups: one for organizations with legal names beginning with A-L versus one for organizations with legal names beginning with M-Z. The different submission windows will not affect the timing of grant review, or your organization’s ability to receive a grant.

To determine which group applies to you, use your organization’s legal name as it appears in the current IRS 501(c)(3) status letter or in the official document that identifies your organization as a unit of state or local government, or as a federally recognized tribal community. (Do not use your organization’s popular name, if different.)

If you are a parent organization that is applying on behalf of an eligible independent component, do not use the name of the independent component here.

Both the A-L group and the M-Z group will have the same Part 1 deadline.

Part 2 deadlines for the A-L group and the M-Z group will be different (see below).

Group A-L:
- Part 1 - Submit to August 12, 2021 at 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time
- Part 2 - Submit to the Applicant Portal: August 19-25, 2021 at 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time
- Earliest Announcement of Grant Award or Rejection: December 2021
- Earliest Start Date for Proposed Period of Performance: January 1, 2022

Group M-Z:
- Part 1 - Submit to August 12, 2021 at 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time
- Part 2 - Submit to the Applicant Portal: August 27-September 2, 2021 at 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time
- Earliest Announcement of Grant Award or Rejection: December 2021
- Earliest Start Date for Proposed Period of Performance: January 1, 2022

Contact the Arts Endowment if you are unsure which group to select.

Submitting an application is a multi-step process:

- Part 1: Submit to the “Application for Federal Domestic Assistance/Short Organization Form.” This is a brief form that will collect very basic information about your organization. Refer to the How to Apply page below for more information.

- Part 2: Complete the “Grant Application Form (GAF)” through the Arts Endowment’s Applicant Portal. This web form is where you will enter the majority of your application material (e.g., project description, timelines, budget information). Refer to the How to Apply page below for more information. (Part 1) and the Arts Endowment’s Applicant Portal (Part 2) are two separate online systems.

All applicants must have a DUNS number ( and be registered with the System for Award Management (SAM, at the time of application.

Before submitting to, your organization must register or renew/verify its registration with both and the System for Award Management (SAM). These registrations can take several weeks.

IMPORTANT: To help reduce burden, there will be a 180-day extension for existing SAM registrations that have expiration dates ranging between April 1, 2021, and September 30, 2021. This effort is intended as relief for those otherwise required to re-register during that timeframe. This does not impact entities registering with SAM for the first time. If your organization does not have a SAM registration and you are thinking of applying for Rescue Plan funds, start the SAM registration process as soon as possible. All organizations approved for funding must have an active SAM registration in order to receive an award.

An organization is limited to one application under the Rescue Plan’s Grants to Organizations guidelines. Exceptions to the one-application rule are made only for parent organizations applying on behalf of one or more separately identifiable and independent components. For more information about parent organizations, see the link to the Eligibility page below.

Application Calendar:

Award Information:


How to Apply:

For group A-L, view this opportunity on

For group M-Z, view this opportunity on

For a list of application documents, see the Package tab (press Preview) on the pages above.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Contact page: Contact Center: Call 1-800-518-4726, email;, or consult the information posted on the website at Support (

CFDA Number:


Funding or Pin Number:

2021NEA01ARP60AL / 2021NEA01ARP60MZ

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

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