Note: This grant page has been archived and is very likely out of date.

Cambridge Artist Relief Fund

Cambridge Community Foundation

Suggest an update

Deadline: Rolling

Grant amount: Up to US $5,000

Fields of work: Art & Culture Disaster Relief / Humanitarian Aid

Applicant type: Artist, Nonprofit

Funding uses: General Operating Expense, Project / Program

Location of project: Middlesex County, Massachusetts

Location of residency: Middlesex County, Massachusetts

View website    Save


The COVID-19 pandemic is putting staggering pressures on the arts and culture sector and artists in Cambridge. With strict guidelines to stem the spread of the virus, public gatherings are banned, venues are closed, performances, shows, events, classes and gigs are being cancelled. Artists are losing income – immediately and into the foreseeable future. The Cambridge Community Foundation, in partnership with the City of Cambridge and its generous donors, are addressing the urgent need of arts and culture nonprofits, artists, and performers by taking immediate action to deploy money through the Cambridge Artist Relief Fund.

The Cambridge Artist Relief Fund will meet immediate needs in the arts sector. Over the next six months, effective Thursday, March 19, the Foundation will accept applications on a rolling basis to provide grants to organizations and individuals facing a financial burden. Please find the application form below.

These immediate efforts dovetail on the foundation’s long-term plans to protect the arts in our city including the creation of the Cultural Capital Fund, to strengthen and sustain our arts and culture ecosystem, foster creative placemaking with a focus on our cultural district, and invest in the next generation of Cambridge’s cultural creatives.

The need is high and the issue is urgent. We invite those who love the arts, Cambridge’s cultural scene, and our city’s eccentricities to join us in addressing the urgent needs of the artists and creatives in our community and ensuring the longevity of the arts and cultural sectors of Cambridge.

The Foundation is able to move swiftly with the support of New England Development, who has matched our initial $25,000 seed investment. Rosemarie and Steve Johnson, long-time Foundation donors, have also pledged $25,000. With sincere gratitude for the leadership of the City of Cambridge and the Cambridge Arts Council on this issue, we are proud to also include the City of Cambridge as a $75,000 donor to this effort. The Cambridge Artist Relief Fund will continue to accept contributions on an ongoing basis. 

Grant criteria

Grant sizes will range up to $1,000 and be provided on a first-come, first-served basis for as long as the fund can sustain requests. Grants will be considered, based on the following criteria:

  • Submit a 100-word summary of the hardships you are facing because of COVID-19
  • Provide evidence of lost opportunity/income from a cancelled contract or letter of validation from a local nonprofit/civic leader, venue host, employer or gig organizer.

A limited number of grants of up to $5,000 will be made available to Cambridge arts organizations that employ current artists and performers and/or train future ones.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Eligibility to apply
    • Focused on lost income, current and into the foreseeable future, the Fund will provide one-time relief to arts organizations and artists who live, work, create, and/or perform in Cambridge.
    • Only one grant per applicant is allowed.

This page was last reviewed June 20, 2020 and last updated June 20, 2020