The program supports Ontario-based professional arts organizations to continue to work and participate in the arts community in the context of COVID-19. It encourages exploration, adaptation, and the development of new ways of working that will help to increase the resilience of Ontario’s arts sector. Projects must be in response to the challenges resulting from the pandemic. This can include activities that assist artists and arts organizations in the short, medium and long term.
Note: This program does not support creation, production, presentation/dissemination or school- and community-based arts engagement activities. These activities are supported through OAC’s regular project programs which continue to run as usual, many with expanded eligibility in response to COVID-19.
There are three categories:
- Ad hoc groups/collectives
- Not-for-profit arts organizations
- For-profit book and magazine publishers
The program’s priorities are to support:
- applicants from the six OAC priority groups to ensure equitable access for all Ontarians:
- Artists of Colour
- Deaf Artists and Artists with Disabilities
- Francophone Artists
- Indigenous Artists
- New Generation Artists (18-30 year olds)
- Artists Living In Regions Outside Toronto
(See the Priority Group web page on OAC’s website for more information)
- projects across a wide range of artistic disciplines
- applicants who serve a key role in their community (artistic field/discipline, region or cultural practice) and whose proposed projects will help them to more effectively pursue their mandate and objectives in the context of COVID-19
- projects that address significant barriers for the applicant and/or their community
- projects that benefit other artists and/or arts organizations in addition to the applicant, and particularly those from OAC priority groups
- projects that have the potential to see benefits in the long term
The Arts Response Initiative was a one-time reallocation of funds to address the challenges faced by the arts community in 2020. There will be no further deadlines.
November 3, 2020, 1 p.m. ET
- Applications are available in Nova approximately two months before the deadline.
- Grant notification will be available approximately four and a half months after the deadline.
: This program does not provide juror comments or feedback to either successful or unsuccessful applicants.
- Ad hoc groups/collectives: maximum $15,000
- Not-for-profit arts organizations: maximum $15,000
- For-profit book and magazine publishers: maximum $15,000
Important: Due to the number of applications received and the limited funds available, grants awarded may be smaller than the amount requested. Assessors will consider the program priorities when making these decisions.
- ad hoc groups/collectives of professional artists or arts professionals with a permanent physical address in Ontario and who are eligible in at least one other OAC project program (see definition of ad hoc groups/collectives in the Guide to OAC Project Programs)
- Ontario-based not-for-profit arts organizations who are eligible in at least one other OAC project or operating program
- Ontario-based, Canadian-owned for-profit book or periodical publishers eligible for funding in OAC’s publishing programs
Read the Guide to OAC Project Programs for more eligibility information.
- municipalities, colleges and/or universities
- non-arts organizations and ad hoc groups/collectives
- amateur, pre-professional or student ad hoc groups/collectives and organizations
- community and youth/training orchestras (see definition)
- community and training choirs/choral organizations (see definition)
This program funds
The program supports a range of activities that may prepare arts organizations to carry out their current and future creation, production, presentation and school- and community-based arts engagement projects in an environment of change. This program also supports activities that explore ways to reach presenters, audiences and markets for visibility and/or income opportunities. Projects can also address public health and safety concerns. Projects may be focused on serving the needs of the applicant organization and/or the needs of other artists, arts organizations or arts communities.
- Experimentation is welcome and it is okay if the results are inconclusive or different from what was anticipated.
- Projects may include more than one activity or phase
Eligible projects must:
- be in response to the challenges resulting from COVID-19. This may include activities that are needed or that have become especially important for the applicant or arts community to continue their work in the context of the pandemic.
Eligible activities include:
- research and planning
- documenting artistic work
- upgrading technology
- website development
- developing knowledge and/or skills in administration, technology and digital platforms and/or artistic practice
- marketing the artistic work of Ontario artists to presenters and audiences
- creating and adapting workspaces
- providing services to Ontario artists and arts organizations
- project administrative fees and expenses (including time spent on the administration of the project by the applicant and partner(s))
- costs related to making the project accessible to Deaf artists, artists with disabilities and audiences. Note: For applicants that have a mandate to serve Deaf artists and artists with disabilities and are disability-led additional support is available through OAC’s Accessibility Fund: Project Support. For more information, visit the Deaf Artists and Artists with Disabilities page on OAC’s website.
- a contribution towards the purchase of equipment and software up to a maximum of $5,000 in total, as needed to achieve the goals of the project. This may include but is not limited to electronics, workspace materials and health and safety items.
- consultant fees
- technician fees
- trainer/mentor and course registration fees
- website costs
- space/venue rental (including virtual or digital)
- shipping costs
- marketing costs
- honoraria for project participants
Note: Applicants may apply for up to 100 per cent of the project costs but are encouraged to seek revenue from a variety of sources, where possible.
This program does not fund
- creation, production, presentation and school- and community-based arts engagement projects, including fees paid to artists for such activity (for more information on OAC’s regular programs, see the Grants web page)
- fundraising activities
- faculty or student projects associated with their research, course work or studies
- living and personal expenses
The activity for which you are requesting funding:
- cannot start before the deadline
- cannot finish before you receive your grant results
- must be completed no more than two years after you receive the grant results
Final report requirements
If you receive a grant you must submit a final report upon completion of the project. See Terms and conditions – receipt of OAC project grant funds for more information on reporting obligations. Complete and submit the report in Nova.
Final reports for this program require grant recipients to provide:
- description of the project undertaken and its outcomes, including details on any minor or approved changes to what had been outlined in the application
- Note: It is okay if the results are inconclusive or different from what was anticipated.
- final budget
- If the budget you submit shows a surplus of more than $250 (revenues as compared to expenses), you may be required to repay the surplus amount to OAC.
- documentation and/or an explanation of how you acknowledged or will acknowledge OAC support for your project.
- The OAC logo should appear on any public information related to the funded activity, including online and print material; attach a sample/screenshot.
Complete and submit an application in Nova, OAC’s online grant application system. You will be able to do this approximately two months before the deadline.
Before applying, you must:
Your application includes:
- basic information about the project
- your answers to application questions
- project budget
- support documents:
- CV, résumé or biography of key project participants
- letter(s) of commitment or intent from key participants in the project
Complete instructions and requirements are in the application in Nova.
For information on how assessors rate applications see the Evaluation Rubric – Organizational Development Projects.
For help creating a profile or submitting an application in Nova, see the Nova User Guide.