Local artists and arts organizations can now apply for funding provided by the Harvey Arts Recovery Fund (HARF), which supports Houston artists, performers, musicians and arts and culture organizations in need of disaster assistance. The second round of grant awards will be distributed this spring and the application is open from Feb. 15 to March 1, 2018, at www.harveyartsrecovery.org. In January, HARF awarded more than $40,000 to local artists and arts, heritage and cultural organizations who suffered personal and professional losses due to Hurricane Harvey.
HARF grant recipient Adam Castañeda of Freneticore said, “It’s essential to support artists during a crisis because we’re already working with limited budgets and our finances are tight regardless the season. Every bit counts and HARF’s support helped us resume our regular, seasonal programming.”
Individual and nonprofit institutional applicants that are 18 years and older must be able to demonstrate, through appropriate documentation their cultural or artistic practice and how they pursue this creative mission professionally. They must also prove that their artistic practice was negatively impacted, directly or indirectly, by Hurricane and Tropical Storm Harvey. So long as both the need and the reasoning behind the need are clearly present, HARF will not restrict the use of funds to any purpose or category. Those who received funding in the first round of grants are not eligible to apply a second time.
Individual applicants must also be able to show that they are pursuing at least one of the following: private and government insurance claims, Red Cross disaster relief, Texas Workforce Commission disaster unemployment insurance, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) individual assistance grants and Small Business Administration (SBA) loans. Institutional applicants on the other hand, must show private and government insurance claims, FEMA public assistance grants or SBA loans.
HARF was created as a collaboration among multiple organizations to meet the substantial needs of the Houston arts and cultural sector during Hurricane Harvey. Funds were raised with the support of local nonprofits, donations through the online advocacy platform www.harveyartsrecovery.org and seed money provided by the Houston Endowment. Creatives within a 10-county region of Harris, Fort Bend, Montgomery, Brazoria, Galveston, Liberty, Waller, Chambers, Austin and San Jacinto have been able to apply for funding since the fall of last year.
Members of the Local Action Group manage the Fund with leadership provided by Galveston Historical Foundation, Fresh Arts, Dance Source Houston, CultureWorks Greater Houston, The Center for Arts and Social Engagement at the University of Houston, Houston Arts Alliance and Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs for the City of Houston.
Recovery for the Houston arts and cultural community is an ongoing process. To help individual artists and small to medium-sized arts, culture and heritage organizations, please donate to Harvey Arts Recovery Fund at harveyartsrecovery.org.