RI Arts and Humanities Councils award nearly $1 million in grants with federal funds to 121 culture, humanities, arts nonprofits

Funding expands assistance reach to state’s more vulnerable and hardest-hit organizations

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is RI-CHARG-MAP-1.jpgSome 121 RI culture, humanities and arts nonprofits benefit from the RI Culture, Humanities and Arts Recovery Grant (RI CHARG) program, a historic collaborative partnership between the State Council on the Arts (RISCA) and the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities (Humanities Council). The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) awarded $968,000 in assistance to Rhode Island from their American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds and is not part of the $1.1 billion in ARPA funding awarded to the state.

These federally appropriated cultural assistance funds administered by RISCA and the Humanities Council provide general operating support grants of $8,000 each to 121 culture, humanities, and arts nonprofits:

  • 95% are small to midsize and/or Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) centered organizations;
  • 65% are organizations based outside the city of Providence; and
  • More than 25% are first-time grantees.

The Councils designed the RI CHARG program to help RI’s culture, humanities, and arts nonprofits prevent, prepare, respond, and recover from hardships suffered due to the pandemic. In keeping with federal agencies’ priority on equity, inclusion, and access efforts and to support small and  mid size organizations, funding priorities were given to BIPOC centered organizations and nonprofits with annual budgets under $500,000.

Click here for a list of grantees. You can also find the listing at the Humanities Council.This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is Final-CHARG-logo-v.2-Email-Header--1024x341.jpg

“These federal funds given to our state through the NEA’s and NEH’s ARPA allotments acknowledge the important economic impact culture, humanities, and arts have on Rhode Island,” Governor McKee said. “On behalf of Rhode Island, I thank and applaud our State Council on the Arts and RI’s Humanities Council for their partnership and swift work in getting this badly needed recovery assistance to their respective communities.”

Elizabeth Francis, Executive Director of the Humanities Council noted: “This historic collaboration between the Humanities Council and RISCA has enabled our two organizations to streamline the application process for cultural organizations across the state, ensuring that the combined $968,000 in relief funds from the NEH and NEA reaches those in the prioritized areas. This unique approach has gained national attention and we’re proud to know that culture, humanities, and arts nonprofits across the state will benefit from this effort. As communities emerge from the pandemic, the humanities and arts are essential to rebuilding our social fabric.”

Randall Rosenbaum, Executive Director of RISCA, added: “I am delighted that we were able to combine funding from the NEA and NEH to directly support these cultural nonprofits. We’re proud that so many of these grantees are small and medium sized organizations; represent culturally diverse communities; or are new to us. These grants will have a significant impact on communities throughout our state who have suffered greatly because of the pandemic.”

RI Arts and Humanities Councils Open Grant Applications for American Rescue Plan Funds to Culture, Humanities, Arts Nonprofits

Historic collaboration between Councils distributes $968,000 of funding
from National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for Humanities

RI State Council on the Arts (RISCA) and the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities (Humanities Council) announced today a collaborative partnership to distribute federal American Rescue Plan (ARP) funds to arts, culture and humanities nonprofits. This funding, from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), totals $968,000.

Applications are open to all eligible nonprofits regardless of whether they have received federal funding in the past. Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC)-centered organizations and nonprofits with annual budgets under $500,000 will be prioritized in this grant program, in keeping with federal agencies’ emphasis to focus on equity, inclusion, access and pandemic resilience.

The recovery grants, called the RI Culture, Humanities and Arts Recovery Grants (RI CHARG), are designed to assist nonprofits with general operating support to prevent, prepare, respond and recover from hardships suffered due to the pandemic.

The Arts and Humanities Councils are encouraging first-time applicants. They will be offering joint virtual workshops on July 16 and July 21; for more information and to register, click here.

In addition, one-on-one virtual support sessions; open drop-in hours via Zoom; and other resources geared toward those new to the granting process will also be available. Visit either Council’s website for more details: RISCA’s website at: www.arts.ri.gov; RI Council for the Humanities’ website at: www.rihumanities.org.

Click here to learn more about workshops, drop-in hours and one on one sessions
Read the guidelines and FAQs

For more information, nonprofits are encouraged to reach out to both of the following:

Rhode Island officials comment on the importance of RI CHARG

“The arts, culture and humanities communities are an important economic driver in our state. These funds from the American Rescue Plan, through the National Endowments for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities, deliver critical investments in this sector supporting its recovery and full return,” Governor McKee said. “On behalf of Rhode Island, we applaud and thank RI’s Humanities Council and the State Arts Agency as well as the NEA and NEH for their service to our state.”

“COVID-19 was a blow to every piece of what makes Rhode Island special. That’s why I worked to get funds for local cultural and heritage organizations into the American Rescue Plan because Rhode Island’s creative economy enriches our state. By combining federal grants with private donations, we can generate economic activity and help our state’s cultural sector survive the pandemic, adapt and prepare for the future, and continue to serve audiences going forward,” said Senator Jack Reed.

“Rhode Island’s arts, culture, and humanities organizations are a key part of what makes our state special and many were hit hard by the pandemic,” said Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. “I’m glad to see the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts and the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities working together to distribute federal funding from the American Rescue Plan to help support this important work.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has taken its toll on Rhode Island’s world class culture and arts scene, but the American Rescue Plan Act is helping our incredible nonprofit sector recover,” said Rep. Jim Langevin. “I’m thrilled that this federal grant funding will help our arts and humanities communities respond to the worst impacts of the pandemic and continue growing our economy and enriching the lives of so many Rhode Islanders.

“Rhode Island artists are responsible for generating millions of dollars in economic activity each year,” said Rep. David Cicilline. “This announcement will ensure money from the American Rescue Plan continues to benefit artists across our state who are doing work that benefits all of us.”

Elizabeth Francis, Executive Director of the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities, and Randall Rosenbaum, Executive Director of RISCA, added: “We are excited that the Arts and Humanities Councils have joined forces to greatly expand access to recovery funding in our communities to help culture, humanities and arts nonprofits, including small- to mid-sized and BIPOC-centered organizations, and first-time grantees. Our partnership is a departure from traditional emergency funds as it greatly expands access to grants to some of our state’s most vulnerable and hard-hit culture, humanities and arts organizations. On behalf of both Councils, we are grateful to Senator Reed, Senator Whitehouse, Congressman Langevin, and Congressman Cicilline for their diligence, dedication and determination to ensure that these important NEA and NEH funds were made available in our state.” 

Federal grants to support 4 RI arts organizations

Latest NEA funds to assist the vital arts economy and post-pandemic revitalization

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is NEA-Logo-1024x512.jpgThe RI State Council on the Arts (RISCA) and three arts organizations will receive $929,800 in grants from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). NEA’s fiscal year 2021 partnership agreement grants address priorities in cultural tourism, community revitalization, economic development, education, and health and human services.

The awards will be given to the following RI organizations:

RISCA will distribute the federal funds as grants to organizations throughout the state. Here is the listing by state:

“Our arts sector is a key economic driver in our state that continues to face considerable challenges especially as we enter a post-pandemic Rhode Island,” Governor Dan McKee said. “On behalf of Rhode Island, thank you to the National Endowment for the Arts for a second award of assistance in less than a month. These are critical investments and are going to help us rebuild and recover better and will allow the arts to continue to play an important role in the lives of Rhode Islanders.”

“Support for the arts contributes to thriving communities. I am pleased to help deliver federal funding for local arts organizations and artists to ensure that Rhode Island’s creative economy can continue to enrich our state. By combining federal grants with private donations, we can generate economic activity and help arts organizations survive the pandemic and continue to serve audiences going forward,” said Senator Reed.

“After a challenging year for the arts, I’m glad this federal funding is coming to Rhode Island through the State Council on the Arts and its partner organizations,” said U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. “Rhode Island’s world-class arts scene is beginning to rev back up in time for summer.”

“Rhode Island’s local arts community is an important driver of economic growth and an invaluable asset to our state,” said Congressman Langevin. “I’m grateful to RISCA for its deep commitment to our world-renowned arts and culture institutions, and I want to congratulate all of the grantees who contribute so much to the Ocean State. Like so many other Rhode Islanders, I look forward to enjoying your work.”

“I’m proud to join the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts in announcing this important federal funding today,” said U.S. Congressman Cicilline. “When they’re given the chance, Rhode Island’s arts community can hold its own against anyone else in the world. Their creativity generates millions of dollars in economic activity each year, and this funding will make sure they bounce back stronger than ever before.”

“As the country and the arts sector begin to work towards a post-pandemic world, the National Endowment for the Arts is proud to fund the work of our partners,” said NEA Acting Chairman Ann Eilers. “These agreements such as the one to RISCA, AS220, CMW and FirstWorks leverage federal funds for regional, state, and local impact, reinforcing the network of support that is vital for a healthy arts ecosystem.”

“These federal grants support important RI arts organizations, but in addition our federal partners provide funds to the State Arts Council to distribute throughout Rhode Island. This partnership grant directly contributes to our economy, to the education of all Rhode Islanders, and to the quality of life we enjoy in the Ocean State.” Randall Rosenbaum, executive director, RISCA, said. “We thank our Congressional delegation and the NEA for once again noting the importance of the arts in our state and investing in our arts and culture economy.”

In April, RISCA received $754,100 in the first round of federal funding through the American Rescue Plan (ARP) from the NEA. In February, the NEA announced the first round of recommended awards for fiscal year 2021 of $145,000 divided among seven Providence-based arts organizations. Read more about the recent NEA grants to Rhode Island:

American Rescue Grants to RI 

FY21 NEA RI Grants

National Endowment for Arts Announces Second Round of Grants for FY 2021 | National Endowment for the Arts