OH CARES Grant II

OH CARES II Grant Guidelines

 

Ohio Humanities is tasked with supporting cultural and heritage nonprofit organizations in Ohio. In this time of pandemic and economic crisis, Ohio Humanities will use CARES Act funds provided by Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities to provide a lifeline to public humanities organizations throughout the state. OH CARES II Grants will provide direct support to organizations whose viability has been endangered by the sudden onset of the pandemic and economic crisis. $60,000 is available for applications requesting up to $5,000.

In order to ensure equitable and widespread distribution, organizations are eligible for one OH Cares II Grant. The applications for OH Cares II Grants will be available on July 31. The initial deadline is August 14. Additional deadlines may be announced pending the availability of funds. Upon receipt of a signed contract and request for funds, 100 percent of the award will be disbursed to organizations. OH CARES grants for programming may become available in early summer.

The OH CARES II Grant Application is Now Closed

  • If the organization is not applying for any other federal funds, please use this budget form.
  • If the organization is applying for any kind of federal funds, please use this budget form.

 

Have questions? Click on the links below for answers!

Is your organization eligible for an OH CARES grant?

What can your organization use the funds for? What is NOT allowed?

How can I prepare to apply for a grant? What will I need?


OH CARES Grant Eligibility

Is your organization eligible for an OH CARES grant?

The organization must:

  • Provide humanities programming to the general public.
    • The humanities are defined as history, anthropology, folklore, archaeology, literature, languages, linguistics, philosophy, ethics, comparative religion, jurisprudence, historical and critical approaches to the arts, and aspects of the social sciences that use historical or philosophical approaches.
  • Be a nonprofit organization incorporated in the state of Ohio.
  • Ohio Humanities may request proof of nonprofit status at its discretion.
    • Proper evidence includes a 501(c)(3) letter, an IRS 990 form, or a copy of the Agent Notification Form for Unincorporated Nonprofit Associations from the Ohio Secretary of State.
  • Be physically located in Ohio and have Ohio residents as its primary audience.
  • Have experienced or be experiencing continued financial hardship because of COVID-19.
    • Hardship includes, but is not limited to, reduction, loss, or furlough of staff; or a significant loss of annual operating revenue.

Who is NOT eligible for OH CARES grants?

  • Individuals.
  • For-profit organizations.
  • Organizations whose primary mission is not focused on the humanities.
  • Organizations whose primary focus is the creation or performance of the arts.
  • Political or advocacy organizations.
  • Religious organizations who seek to carry out advocacy or conversion.
  • Organizations that discriminate against any person or group of persons.
  • K-12 institutions and colleges, universities, or academic departments therein.

What ITEMS are NOT eligible for OH CARES grants?

  • Capital improvements, such as construction or preservation projects; hardware that is not specific to socially distant audiences or to make a site accessible while maintaining physical distancing.
  • Items meant for personal use.

OH CARES II Grants 

How may OH CARES funds be used?

OH-CARES II Grants will run for up to six months from the date of award unless otherwise requested in the application. The project start date must be October 1, 2020 or earlier. All grants must be closed out by May 1, 2021.

Funds may be used

  • For costs associated with digital or disease-mitigated programming.
  • For costs associated with maintaining an open site, such as the purchase of supplies to ensure staff and visitor safety (sanitizer, masks, cleaning supplies, etc.).
  • To retain or rehire humanities staff.
  • Pay rent or utility bills.
  • Maintain or increase the security of sites and collections.

Other key provisions

  • Matching funds, either cash or in-kind, are not required.
  • Organizations may receive only one grant through the OH CARES program.
  • Organizations with an open project grant are encouraged to apply for emergency support.

How to apply for an OH CARES grant?

Gather your records. You will need:

  • Your EIN (Employer Identification Number).
  • Your DUNS number.
  • The application requests information about the status of the organization’s 2020 budget, so it is important to have an updated picture of the organization’s fiscal situation, such as an estimate of the expected 2020 financial losses due to COVID-19. 
  • The contact information for the board chair, the chief executive, and either the organizational bookkeeper or the board treasurer.
  • A list of other forms of financial support the organization has received or intends to apply for in response to the COVID-19 crisis.

Preparing your application.

The narrative section asks the following questions:
  • How has COVID-19 impacted your organization and its operations?
  • How will your organization use an OH CARES grant?
  • How does your organization advance the public humanities in Ohio?
  • What are the audiences that the organization serves?
  • Tell us more about your organization and how it serves Ohioans. 
The OH CARES budget guidance:
  • Calculate your needs, generally based on three months of operating costs. It may be helpful to have your 2019 operating budget and revenues on hand. Needs may include retaining staff, paying overhead costs, security, or providing programming to stay-at-home audiences.
  • Organizations may request up to $5,000.
  • Be able to explain how you will use OH CARES funding.
  • Cost-share is not required for an OH CARES grant, but by reporting cost-share, you will help us demonstrate on-going needs. Plan to report the full extent of potential 2020 losses. This can and often will exceed the funding levels available.
  • Provide a list of other forms of financial support the organization has received or intends to apply for in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Such funds might include SBA loans or grants from public and private sources.
Final Steps:
  • Upload the budget document (the Excel spreadsheet). 
    • If the organization is not applying for any other federal funds, please use this budget form.
    • If the organization is applying for any kind of federal funds, please use this budget form.
  • Upload a list of all board members
  • Optional: The most recent IRS 990 form. 
  • Optional: The organization’s IRS determination form. 
  • Check the box that states you have reviewed the certification statement. 

When you have completed these steps:

  • Hit Submit
  • The person listed as the project director will receive an email signaling that your application was received. The email will include a pdf copy of the completed application.
  • Print the pdf for your records.

Grant applicants will be required to certify that they:

  • Are not presently debarred, suspended, declared ineligible, or voluntarily excluded from participating in federally funded programs.
  • Are required to certify that they are not currently delinquent in the payment of a federal debt.
  • Are in compliance with the Department of Labor’s Fair Labor Standards and all of the following federal nondiscrimination statutes: Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Age Discrimination Act of 1975.
  • Ohio Humanities does not accept applications from fiscal agent sponsors.
    Ohio Humanities may request proof of nonprofit status at its discretion. Proper evidence includes 501(c)3 letter, IRS 990 form, or a copy of the Agent Notification Form for Unincorporated Nonprofit Associations from Ohio’s Secretary of State.
  • Organizations must have a federal DUNS number.
    • Visit HERE to request a DUNS number for your organization.

For questions, please contact:

Patricia N. Williamsen, Executive Director

pwilliamsen@ohiohumanities.org

David J. Merkowitz, Assistant Director 

dmerkowitz@ohiohumanities.org

or complete our CONTACT FORM to schedule a conversation with Ohio Humanities staff.

Need More Information?

David Merkowitz explains the CARES II application process in a webinar here.

The accompanying PowerPoint presentation can be downloaded here.