ECCF Announces Arts Grant Recipients and Additional Funding

May 29, 2020Arts & Culture, COVID-19 News, Press Release

Danvers, MA — Essex County Community Foundation announced today that it is once again processing grant applications to the Essex County Artist Fund and the Essex County Creative Nonprofit Resiliency Grant Program.

The funds, established in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, are part of ECCF’s Creative County Initiative (CCI) to support Essex County’s creative ecosystem

The Essex County Artist Fund, administered by Rocky Neck Art Colony, is ECCF’s response to the everyday needs of individual artists facing unprecedented challenges due to the crisis. The Fund provides $400 per applicant to support full or part-time professional artists who have lost income used to sustain their creative practice due to the COVID-19 crisis. Funded artists also have the opportunity for their work to be featured on and associated social media platforms.

To date, 100 artists have been awarded grants, and thanks to additional funding – announced on May 20 – more than 60 additional artists will receive assistance.

“These creatives are gig workers that have faced unprecedented challenges due to the restriction of social interaction, which is so crucial to their work,” said CCI program director Karen Ristuben. “The grants will not only provide our local creatives with much-needed financial support, but they also let them know that we value their work, which is essential to the vibrancy and connectedness of our communities.”

The Essex County Creative Nonprofit Resiliency Grant Program is providing one-time grants to the Essex County cultural nonprofits that anchor our vulnerable and vitally important cultural communities. The intent of this program is to assist small and mid-sized organizations severely impacted by the crisis.

To date, more than $100,000 has been granted to 29 arts and cultural nonprofit organizations through this program. (See attached list, sorted by town.)

“We are so proud to support these organizations, which have for so long breathed life and vitality into our communities,” said ECCF President and CEO Beth Francis. “As a region, it’s critical that we support them in any way we can so that they can continue to enrich the lives of those who live in Essex County.”

Thanks to additional funds being redirected from CCI, ECCF now has the capacity to fund an additional 6-12 creative nonprofits facing challenges due to COVD-19.

“It is imperative that we help our arts and cultural nonprofits, many of which remain indefinitely shuttered and in danger of closing permanently,” said Ristuben. “They are doing so much right now to help create social unity in our communities through online classes, virtual performances, and free programming. We need to support them now so that they have the opportunity to return to full capacity once we find our new normal.”

For more information about the Essex County Artist Fund and the Essex County Creative Nonprofit Resiliency Grant Program – or to donate – please visit

Essex County Creative Nonprofit Resiliency Grant Program Recipients
Amesbury Carriage Museum
Lowell’s Maritime Foundation

Andover Center for History and Culture 

Danvers Historical Society

Cape Ann Art Haven
Maritime Gloucester
Rocky Neck Art Colony, Inc.
Gloucester Stage Company
Gloucester Writers Center

Guerilla Opera
The Friends of the Museum of Printing
Merrimack Valley Philharmonic Society

Essex Art Center
Immigrant City Archives dba Lawrence History Center

Galleries at LynnArts (GALA)
Building Bridges Through Music Inc.
Raw Art Works
Lynn Museum/Lynn Arts

Northeast Massachusetts Youth Orchestras, Inc. 

Workshop Arts Inc. 

Newburyport Art Association
OnStage, Inc. dba Theater in the Open
The Actors Studio of Newburyport

Rockport Art Association and Museum
Rockport Music
Windhover Center for the Performing Arts

Salem Community Arts Center, Inc/Salem Film Festival
History Alive