Announcing the California Relief Fund for Artists and Cultural Practitioners

SACRAMENTO, CA – The Center for Cultural Innovation (CCI), partnering as an Administering Organization for the California Arts Council, announced today the opening of the California Relief Fund for Artists and Cultural Practitioners. The individual relief grant program supports artists and cultural practitioners statewide who have been economically impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

About the California Relief Fund for Artists and Cultural Practitioners

The California Relief Fund for Artists and Cultural Practitioners program was created by the California Arts Council in response to the economic crisis and impending financial needs of individual artists resulting from the coronavirus pandemic. A total of $920,000 of the Council’s state grant funds will be awarded through the program, which offers unrestricted $1,000 grants for individual artists and cultural practitioners statewide. Individuals from historically marginalized communities that have experienced financial disadvantages and may become more vulnerable due to current economic events are strongly encouraged to apply.

The California Arts Council designated CCI, a current Arts Council Statewide & Regional Network grantee whose mission is to promote knowledge sharing, networking, and financial independence for individuals in the arts, as the statewide Administering Organization for the new relief program. CCI serves as the administering organization for various relief funding programs for arts communities across California.

“COVID-19 brought California’s arts ecosystem to an abrupt halt. Some artists and arts organizations were able to transition to alternative programming quickly, but many individual artists and culture bearers are still struggling with long-term financial uncertainty due to the pandemic. Artists are vital leaders in their communities, especially during times of crisis, and they must be supported directly,” said Nashormeh Lindo, California Arts Council Chair. “We are excited to partner with the Center for Cultural Innovation, as they have demonstrated a successful rapid-relief funding model, and they will ensure the relief funds are distributed to our state’s artists and cultural practitioners swiftly and equitably.”

About the Grant Application Process

The program is designed to streamline the application process and make the program accessible to California-based artists and cultural practitioners experiencing a loss of income due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Applicants of the unrestricted $1,000 grants are asked to provide a brief response detailing their current financial situation and how the funds will be used. Prospective applicants are not required to be affiliated with a nonprofit arts organization to be eligible for funding. Applicants will be notified of their award status two weeks after the grant application deadline.

The application deadline for the California Relief Fund for Artists and Cultural Practitioners is Tuesday, August 18 at 3 p.m. PDT. For more information, including program guidelines, dates, staff support, and language assistance, visit

For questions about the California Relief Fund program, contact For press inquiries only, contact California Arts Council Public Affairs Specialist Kimberly Brown at

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The California Arts Council is a state agency with a mission of strengthening arts, culture, and creative expression as the tools to cultivate a better California for all. It supports local arts infrastructure and programming statewide through grants, initiatives, and services. The California Arts Council envisions a California where all people flourish with universal access to and participation in the arts.

Members of the California Arts Council include: Chair Nashormeh Lindo, Vice Chair Jaime Galli, Larry Baza, Lilia Gonzales Chavez, Jodie Evans, Kathleen Gallegos, Stanlee Gatti, Donn K. Harris, Alex Israel, Consuelo Montoya, and Jonathan Moscone. Learn more at

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