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Organizational CH CARES Humanities Relief Grants aim to provide general operating support to organizations that have experienced the cancellation of their public humanities activities due to a decrease or loss of revenue, programming opportunities, paid staff, or venues as a result of COVID-19. 

A rapid response general support fund will provide up to $15,000 to Colorado-based public humanities and cultural organizations in unrestricted general operating support grant funds that an organization can use toward any urgent needs resulting from COVID-19 to support the capacity for continued implementation of public humanities activities. Eligible expense items include, but are not limited to any of the following costs:

Staff salaries and fringe benefits for programmatic and administrative personnel

Professional fees, including honoraria and stipends for humanities advisors, interviewees, technical consultants, etc. Please note that although current Colorado Humanities board members may serve as advisors or consultants to projects, they may not be compensated from Colorado Humanities grant funds for any goods or services they provide.

Travel, lodging, and per-diem expenses (the maximum allowable reimbursement rate is 52 cents per mile for automobile mileage and $70 per day for meals per person)

Supplies and materials for all organizational activities

Equipment rental

Administrative expenses including phone, postage, photocopying, and printing

Marketing expenses (e.g., design, printing, distribution, ad placement)

Evaluation expenses

Documentation expenses (e.g., videography of events)


Applicants may request up to $15,000 in general operating support. Grant awards will be determined in proportion to an organization’s budget size, and grant requests can be no more than 10% of an organization’s 2019 operating budget.   


Applications will be accepted from Colorado-based nonprofit agencies and organizations with a minimum two-year organizational history whose work in the public humanities in Colorado is currently impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Applicants must demonstrate this need through either economic hardship due to loss of income as a result of loss of programming opportunities and/or revenue sources, or unanticipated expenses incurred due to cancelled or modified programming or project activities (e.g., adapting in-person programming to online).

Current Colorado Humanities partners ARE eligible to apply, as long as the activities supported by the Organizational CH CARES Relief Grant do not directly overlap with expenses already supported through contracts or agreements with Colorado Humanities.

Tax ID (EIN)

Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number, available through Dun & Bradstreet. If your organization does not have a DUNS number, one may be obtained by calling 866.705.5711 or https://www.dnb.com/duns-number/get-a-duns.html.

Prior grant history with Colorado Humanities is NOT required.

Eligible applicants are also asked to complete the form below that includes a description of the applicant organization, provide contact information for the applicant organization and authorizing official of the applicant organization, and supply other pertinent information including physical address, Congressional district information, and service area demographics.

Matching funds are not required. But if you obtain matching funds, please report them to help CH meet ongoing federal requirements.

Requested funds must be allocated to budget line items that are not receiving support from other federal funds sources. CH funds may not duplicate support from other federal sources.

Applicants are required to provide responses to the following questions as part of the application form:

Organizational Description

Describe your organization including your mission. (100 words)

Organizational Activities

Describe the types of public humanities programming and/or public humanities activities offered or implemented by your organization. (250 words)

Statement of Need

What are your organization’s immediate funding needs because of COVID-19? This may include business overhead, rent, utilities, payroll, supplies and materials, technical support, and other related costs. (250 words)


Describe the primary audience served by your organization (100 words)

Potential impact of funding

How will this funding make a difference for your organization? (250 words)

Frequently Asked Questions - FAQs

1 Is a specific project required for this grant?

No, a specific project is not required for Organizational CH CARES Humanities Relief Grants. Award funds are intended to be used for general operating support for organizations working in the public humanities currently impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

2 Who is eligible to apply for an Organizational CH CARES Humanities Relief Grant?

Any Colorado-based non-profit organizations or agencies with tax-exempt status that can demonstrate a substantial track record of public humanities work over the past two years may apply. An applicant may be, but is not limited to this type of organization: a museum, library, literary organizations, archives, historical societies, cultural centers, tribal governments. 

3 What qualifies as general operating support?

General operating support is basically anything essential to keeping your organization functioning: rent, salaries, utilities, and other monthly expenses. 

4 What specific documents do I need to submit along with the application for the Relief grant?

Most recent form 990

IRS 501©3 determination letter

5 Are there any limitations on how funds are spent for the Organizational Humanities Relief grant?

So long as funds are spent to alleviate the hardship identified in your application, there are no specific requirements on how funds should be spent. Colorado Humanities Relief Grants are not intended to Support: 

Activities and projects primarily intended to advance a specific policy or political agenda or to influence legislation (advocacy) or that promote a particular political, religious, or ideological point of view

The purchase of land or facilities, construction or renovation 

Overlapping costs with other pending or approved application(s) for federal funding 

Projects that fall outside of the humanities (including the creation or performance of art; creative writing, autobiographies, memoirs, and creative nonfiction; and empirically based social science research or policy studies). 

Prizes, awards, scholarships, grants 

CH CARES Humanities Relief Grants are made possible by funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the federal CARES Act. 

Please email grants@coloradohumanities.org or call 303.894.7951 x21 if you have questions about how to develop your proposal or how to interpret guidelines or requirements.

We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.