It’s not too late to apply for the North Carolina Humanities Council’s emergency relief grants for cultural organizations. 

In late March, President Trump signed the $2.2 trillion federal CARES Act. The humanities council received $628,300 in grant funding, as a result of the act, via the National Endowment for the Humanities. Applications for the grants opened on May 13 and will close on May 29. The North Carolina Arts Council’s portal, meanwhile, is open for stimulus relief grant applications through May 22.

“As Co-Chair of the Congressional Humanities Caucus, I am pleased that the North Carolina Humanities Council will receive over $600,000 in funding from CARES Act to distribute to grantees across the state,” Congressman David Price stated in a press release. “State stay-at-home orders and other impacts of COVID-19 have created significant strain on key cultural, social, and historical institutions, many of which provide critical economic and educational resources across North Carolina.”

Even before the pandemic, cultural organizations across the state have faced an uphill battle with funding and public interest. In December, the Orange County Historical Museum closed after years of struggling to stay open. 

The emergency grants, which range from $5,000-$20,000, will be designated to cultural organizations like museums and historical sites that have been effected by the pandemic, with a special eye toward organizations “located in or serving rural communities, organizations serving traditionally under-resourced groups, and organizations that do not receive significant public funding,” according to the press release.

Funding may go toward things staff salaries, programming, and costs associated with ongoing projects, like the digitization of collections. 

Contact deputy arts and culture editor Sarah Edwards at

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