Emergency Funds and Resources

This page lists emergency resources for artists and arts organizations (and their staff), sorted by discipline, followed by general assistance organizations. These resources are available for a variety of reasons - from natural disasters to personal medical needs - and will be updated continuously.

NOTE: We add COVID-19-specific relief funds to this page as we learn about them, and they are listed FIRST below. 

For the main County of Sonoma emergency and recovery resources, visit SoCo Emergency: Recover for the 2020 Walbridge/Meyers Fires, the 2019 Kincade Fire, the 2019 Russian River Flood, and the 2017 Sonoma County Wildfires. For Sonoma County’s current information on the coronavirus and vaccination, visit SoCo Emergency: Novel Coronavirus. For arts-specific resources on the novel coronavirus, visit our 2020 COVID-19 Resources page. Scroll to the bottom of this page for general support and relief resources. 


COVID-19 Relief Grants and Loans (Updated Monthly)

Arts and Culture Leaders of Color Emergency Fund – Arts Administrators of Color Network initiated this fund to support BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) artists & arts administrators impacted by COVID-19 through $200 microgrants.

  • UPDATE FALL 2021: The fund has closed until 2022. If they reopen the fund, we will update this post.

Arts Loan Fund: COVID-19 Emergency Loans for Arts Organizations– providing loans that can be used to cover any needs identified by a nonprofit arts organization due to the impacts of the COVID-19 public health orders.

California COVID-19 Rent Relief – This program helps income-eligible households with rent and utilities, both for past due and future payments. 

California Humanities Relief and Recovery Grants – providing funds between $5,000 and $20,000 for short-term general operating support to public humanities-focused organizations to meet the immediate needs of their communities and respond to the current challenges presented by the pandemic.

  • Round 2 – apply during August 25-September 15, 2021 (5pm)


California Small Business COVID-19 Relief Grant Program – providing grants of up to $25,000 to underserved micro and small businesses in California.

  • Round 8 – only open to non-profit culture institutions; apply during August 27-September 30, 2021 (eligible nonprofit cultural institutions must complete a new application even if they already applied in Rounds 1,2, 5, or 6.; nonprofit cultural institutions that applied in Round 4 do not need to re-apply).
  • Round 9 – open to applicants who have been waitlisted for Rounds 1,2,3,5,and 6, (no need to reapply) and to new applicants that have not applied to previous rounds; apply during September 9-30, 2021

CERF+ the Artists Safety Net: COVID-19 Relief Grant – provides $1,000 to artists working in craft disciplines who are facing dire circumstances due to food, housing, and/or medical insecurities as a result of the ongoing pandemic. Priority will be given to Black, Indigenous, People of Color, as well as folk and traditional artists. 

  • UPDATE FALL 2021: Round 4 of funding has closed. If they reopen the grant, we will update this post.

Sweet Relief Musicians Fund: COVID-19 Fund – provides financial assistance to career musicians.

U.S. Small Business Administration: Shuttered Venue Operators Grant – providing support for live venues, live performing arts organizations, movie houses & cultural institutions that have had to close doors due to COVID-19. 

  • UPDATE FALL 2021: The program has closed. If they reopen it, we will update this post.


Actors, Dancers, Performing Artists, and Film Industry

The Actors Fund Entertainment Assistance Program – serves the arts and entertainment community including emergency financial assistance, affordable housing, health care and insurance counseling.  

Motion Picture and Television Fund – temporary emergency financial assistance is available to qualified industry members experiencing financial hardship due to illness, disability, unemployment, or other reasons.

SAG-AFTRA – provides financial assistance to eligible SAG-AFTRA members and their families for basic expenses during times of crisis.

Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneers Foundation – provides both short-term and long-term assistance to veterans of the motion picture entertainment industry.

Multi-Discipline / Miscellaneous

The American Institute for Conservation – The American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works offers financial relief opportunities for historic sites and art conservation due to a natural disaster.

Arts Loan Fund – (ALF) is a collaborative program run by members of Northern California Grantmakers. The fund has provided quick-turnaround loans to nonprofits for over thirty years and aids organizations in developing sound financial habits. 

Behind The Scenes Grant – emergency funding for entertainment technology industry professionals (behind the scenes in any type of performance venue, behind the camera, on the road, or for dealers, manufacturers, production companies, consulting and design firms), who are unable to work due to illness or injury.

California Lawyers for the Arts – providing free and low-cost legal services to artists including processing claims with FEMA, SBA and other disaster relief agencies.

Craft Emergency Relief Fund CERF+  – serves artists who work in craft disciplines by providing a safety net to support strong and sustainable careers. Core services include emergency relief. Click on “Get Relief.”

Foundation for Contemporary Arts – funding for innovative visual and performing artists who have unanticipated, sudden opportunities to present their work to the public when there is insufficient time to seek other sources of funding, or incur unexpected or unbudgeted expenses for projects close to completion with committed exhibition or performance dates.

The Haven Foundation – gives financial assistance to established freelance artists, writers and other members of the arts and art production communities who have suffered disabilities or experienced a career-threatening illness, accident, natural disaster or personal catastrophe. (NOT accepting applications for COVID-19 impacts.)

Max’s Kansas City Project – grants to artists in need (all disciplines) who either live in New York State, or Sonoma County artists that have connections to the former NYC Max’s Kansas City restaurant/club/bar. 

The Rauschenberg Emergency Grants – expected to be rolled out in late May or early June 2020; will provide visual artists, media artists, and choreographers up to $5,000 worth of assistance for medical emergencies. Applicants must be US citizens or permanent residents.


The Actors Fund Entertainment Assistance Program – serves the arts and entertainment (including musicians) community including musicians) for emergency financial assistance, affordable housing, health care and insurance counseling

California Jazz Foundation – provides emergency financial assistance to jazz musicians and others who have made substantial contributions to the art form.

Gospel Music Trust Fund – provide financial assistance, in the event of an emergency or major catastrophe, terminal or severe illness, to individuals who have derived a substantial portion of their income from the field of Gospel music.

Jazz Foundation Of America – offers aid to elder jazz and blues musicians in crisis.

MusiCares – provides a safety net of critical assistance for music people in times of need including emergency financial assistance.

Musicians Foundation – helps professional musicians by providing emergency financial assistance in meeting current living, medical and allied expenses. All professional musicians are eligible to apply.

Music Maker Relief Foundation – Supplies emergency aid for artists in crisis.

Sweet Relief Musicians Fund – provides financial assistance to career musicians who are facing illness, disability, or age-related problems.

Visual Artists

Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Emergency Grant – Artists working in the disciplines of painting, sculpture or printmaking, who can demonstrate a minimum involvement of ten years in a mature phase of his or her work, whose needs are the result of an unforeseen, catastrophic incident, and who lack the resources to meet that situation.

Artists’ Charitable Fund – assists American artists living anywhere in the United States by provides financial support for artists struck by medical, fire or other disaster.

Artists Fellowship Financial Assistance – The Artists’ Fellowship provides emergency aid to professional fine artists and their families in times of sickness, natural disaster, bereavement or unexpected extreme hardship.”

Foundation for Contemporary Arts – funding for innovative visual and performing artists who have unanticipated, sudden opportunities to present their work to the public when there is insufficient time to seek other sources of funding, or incur unexpected or unbudgeted expenses for projects close to completion with committed exhibition or performance dates.

The Hero Initiative – creates a financial safety net for comic creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work.

Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant – Painters, artists and sculptors who work on paper, including printmakers, with demonstrable financial need.

Writers & Journalists

American Society of Journalists and Authors – helps freelance writers who, because of illness, disability, or a natural disaster are unable to work.  Recipients do not need to be members of ASJA.

Authors League Fund – helps professional writers and dramatists who find themselves in financial need because of medical problems, temporary loss of income, or other misfortune.

Book Industry Charitable Foundation – assist with specific unforeseen emergency financial needs of a bookstore employee and their immediate family members living in the same household.

Carnegie Fund for Authors – awards grants to American authors who have been published by a mainstream publisher and who are in need of emergency funds.

Dramatists Guild Emergency Grants – emergency financial assistance to individual playwrights, composers, lyricists, and bookwriters in dire need of funds due to severe hardship or unexpected illness.

Hero Initiative – creates a financial safety net for comic creators who may need emergency medical aid, financial support for essentials of life, and an avenue back into paying work.

PEN Writers’ Emergency Fund – funds professional (published or produced) writers in acute, emergency financial crisis.

Emergency Residencies

Alliance of Artists Communities – In the event of a natural disaster, the Alliance contacts its network of more than 150 residency programs to identify immediate and short-term availability of residencies. They work with affected artists (painter or sculptor) to take advantage of these residency opportunities, including grants of up to $1,000.

Vermont Studio Center’s Displaced Artists Fund – a residency fellowship is open to artists and writers worldwide who have been displaced due to a natural disaster.

  • UPDATE: The Center has been closed since March 2020 due to the pandemic, with plans to re-open in 2022. 



2-1-1 – call 2-1-1 to be connected with community services in your area, providing services like food banks, clothing closets, shelters, rent assistance, utility assistance and physical and mental health resources.

American Red Cross Sonoma and Napa Chapter – offers information about disaster services, health and safety services, emergency preparation and other programs.

Catholic Charities Santa Rosa – provides emergency food and other services.  Click on “Get Help.”

Community Action Project (CAP)-Sonoma Disaster Relief Assistance Fund – short term rental assistance, replacing lost goods. 

Mental Health Resources (Bilingual and Free) – compiled by the Sonoma County Resilience Collaborative

Rebuilding Our Community (ROC) Sonoma County – offers connection to long term fire recovery help. 

Salvation Army – Napa and Sonoma – offers a wide variety of relief services. This website can locate nearby branches by a zip code search.

Sonoma County Economic Development Board: Business Recovery Resources – A list of resources and services for businesses, self-employed, employees, and employers.

Sonoma County Recovers – official page for the County of Sonoma and City of Santa Rosa 2017 Fire Recovery and is a resource for all things concerning wildfire recovery, including information on debris removal, financial help, damaged property, rebuilding, and more.

Statewide Wildfire Recovery Resources – to protect lives and property by effectively preparing for, preventing, responding to, and recovering from all threats, crimes, hazards, and emergencies.

Undocufund – emergency assistance to the estimated 38,500 undocumented immigrants who live and work in Sonoma County.


For more resources, including resources on insurance for creatives, please go to:


Return to the Emergency Recovery Resources homepage.