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$10 million in COVID relief granted to Mass. cultural nonprofits

The Herald News

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BOSTON – Mass Cultural Council, in partnership with the Executive Office of Housing & Economic Development, announced the recipients of nearly $10 million in COVID relief through the Cultural Organization Economic Recovery Grant Program.

Three Fall River organizations were among the 183 cultural nonprofits statewide that received $9,960,600 to support this sector's economic recovery from losses sustained by the COVID-19 pandemic. The program is part of the Baker-Polito Administration's Economic Recovery Plan, Partnerships for Recovery.

"In addition to expanding opportunity for job seekers, assisting communities as they plan and adapt, and helping to create a foundation to build upon in the months ahead, our comprehensive plan for economic recovery continues to deliver targeted relief in the form of grants like this," said Gov. Charlie Baker. "Thanks to Mass Cultural Council's work to support this sector, this grant program allows us to target necessary funding to the organizations that are most in need."

The Little Theatre of Fall River received $6,000 through the Cultural Organization Economic Recovery Grant Program.

The USS Massachusetts Memorial Committee received Fall River's largest grant of $100,000, while Little Theatre of Fall River received $6,000 and Creative Arts Network was awarded $4,000.

"As an important industry cluster that is spread out across the entire commonwealth, our cultural sector is valuable to the fabric of Massachusetts," said Lt. Governor Karyn Polito. "These grants will bring relief to many of our cultural institutions as they face the challenges posed by the pandemic while also planning for a future beyond COVID-19."

The Cultural Organization Economic Recovery Grant Program was extremely competitive and proved the cultural sector's great need for public investment: a total of 424 applications were received over three weeks, requesting $30.2 million in assistance. Grant awards ranged from $1,000 to a maximum of $100,000.

"For 10 months Mass Cultural Council worked diligently to understand and document the economic devastation the cultural sector is facing from COVID-19," said David T. Slatery, acting executive director of the Mass Cultural Council. "The Agency is deeply appreciative of the Administration for releasing this vital investment at a critical time. The Governor understands that a thriving cultural sector is key to restoring the state's economy to pre-pandemic levels, and recognized Mass Cultural Council as the key partner to implement his plan to deliver relief efficiently and effectively."