National Endowment for the Humanities Relief Fund for Cultural Institutions

Apr 23 2020

National Endowment for the Humanities Relief Fund for Cultural Institutions

Resources for NonprofitsNational Endowment for the Humanities (NEC) has announced guidelines for “NEH CARES,” an emergency relief funding program for cultural institutions.


The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act recognizes that the nonprofit humanities sector is an essential component of America’s economic and civic life. NEH has received supplemental funding to provide emergency relief to institutions and organizations working in the humanities that have been affected by the coronavirus.  In keeping with Congress’s intent in enacting the CARES Act, proposed short-term projects should emphasize retaining or hiring humanities staff.

NEH invites applications from eligible organizations seeking support for at-risk humanities positions and projects that have been impacted by the coronavirus.  Through this funding opportunity, NEH will award grants to museums, libraries and archives, historic sites, independent research institutions, professional organizations, colleges and universities, and other cultural organizations across the country to help these entities continue to advance their mission during the interruption of their operations due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Eligible applicants include U.S. nonprofit organizations with 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, public and 501(c)(3) accredited institutions of higher education, state and local governmental agencies, and federally recognized Native American tribal governments.

Eligible entities should also contact their state humanities councils. NEH supports 56 state and jurisdictional humanities councils across the country, all of which also make awards to local humanities projects.

Applications are due May 11, with decisions in mid-June. If you have questions about eligibility or award details, view the NEH CARES: Cultural Organizations FAQ.

Grant Snapshot

Maximum award amount – $300,000

Open to – Organizations

Period of performance – June 15, 2020 to December 31, 2020

Application available – April 20, 2020

Application due – May 11, 2020

Expected notification dateJune 15, 2020

Project Start date

June 15, 2020Apply Now on

Contact Information

For projects focusing on education, contact the Division of Education Programs at [email protected].

For projects focused on public programming, contact the Division of Public Programs at [email protected].

For projects focusing on digital humanities, contact the Office of Digital Humanities at [email protected].

For projects focusing on scholarly research, contact the Division of Research Programs at [email protected].

For projects focusing on preservation and access, contact the Division of Preservation and Access at [email protected].

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at

Don’t forget, if you are a nonprofit heritage tourism organization located within the boundaries of Four Rivers Heritage Area (or the boundaries of any of Maryland’s Certified Heritage Areas) you may be eligible for an MHAA COVID-19 Emergency Operating Grant. To discuss that opportunity, send us an e-mail at [email protected]. Stay safe and take care!