Wichita Creatives Fund | Emergency Relief for Wichita-area Artists

Wichita Creatives Emergency Relief Fund

Wichita Creatives Emergency Relief Fund | Donate Now

The Wichita Creatives Emergency Relief Fund was created for individuals working in the art and creative sector who have been impacted by the current public health crisis. The primary concern is for the well-being of our community’s creatives – specifically, independent artists, musicians, performers and others who work in a creative capacity. The fund will provide $500 rapid response, need-based grants to help offset the lost wages affecting so many in our creative community.

The fund launches with $25,000 from the COVID-19 Connection Fund at the Wichita Community Foundation and $10,000 from the Arts Council (who will also act as the fiscal sponsor). Organizers would like to raise at least $50,000 by this Friday, April 17th when applications open. The first round of grants will be awarded on Friday, April 24th.

Arts supporters may DONATE to the relief fund via their website, or by using the PayPal donation button below:

The idea arose from a collective zoom cocktail hour with a group of Wichita arts and culture organizers and advocates a few weeks ago, including Kristin Beal (Co-Founder, Program Director, Harvester Arts), Shannon Boone (Owner, Chief Chaos Coordinator, Shay Chic Productions), Emily Brookover (Director of Community Development, Downtown Wichita) Ann Keefer (Vice President Program Development, Wichita Festivals, Inc.),  Lela Meadow-Conner (CEO & mother/founder, mama.film) and Kate Van Steenhuyse (Co-Founder, Executive Director, Harvester Arts). Local artist Hannah Scott has been hired to design graphics for the campaign.

“We all work for arts and cultural and/or advocacy organizations. In our daily practice and throughout history, we know that the arts are fundamental to human existence. Preserving our local culture and the health of our community’s creatives is essential to the health of our ecosystem, which requires the constant infusion of artistic energy,” said the group. 

“People have historically turned to the arts during times of strife, and now this cultural moment is no different. Artists are our keepers of history, they will reflect on the unprecedented times we are living in. If we want to have a vibrant city to come back to we have to support and engage our talent. If there ever was a time, it’s now. No donation is too small and we hope to continue our community fundraising efforts through the week (and beyond) so that we can support as many creatives as possible.”

For more information and to apply,

Applications open at 9:00am on Friday, April 17th.

See the Arts Council’s COVID-19 Resource List for more helpful links.

Grants & Assistance

Arts Save Cities
We believe that Arts Save Cities by creating vibrant, inclusive, diverse communities. We also believe that arts are vital to the future of our city, as their presence fosters civic pride and participation, stimulates the economy, attracts tourists, revitalizes neighborhoods, and addresses social problems. Each grant is meant to celebrate and further propel the art community, opportunities and presence within our city.

Click here to download the Artist Grant Application
Click here to download the Artist Grant Award Policy Information
Click here to download the Partnership Funding Request Guidelines

The Arts Council and City of Wichita Partnership
The City of Wichita partners with The Arts Council’s Cultural Funding Committee to ensure the most qualified recipients are awarded. The City of Wichita provides grant funding, while the Cultural Funding Committee manages the application and selection process. The Arts Council has also been designated as the entity that advises the Wichita City Council on all arts-related matters.

Available Grants
For over a decade, the City of Wichita has granted funding to local arts organizations to recognize, preserve and celebrate Wichita’s rich arts and cultural heritage – a heritage that has a tremendous impact on all residents’ quality of life. For 2020, the City has awarded 39 organizations and individual artists’ operational support that has totaled more than $3.2 million.

The City offered three different grant opportunities that are awarded through a competitive process:

Cultural Funding Grants provide operational support for qualifying 501(c) (3) non-profit arts and cultural organizations that significantly serve Wichita citizens and have documented history of providing high-quality programming to a large, diverse, audience of at least five years. They must also have documentation supporting their impact on the local economy, as well as growth and development of artistic excellence. The objective of this program is to support the annual operations of exemplary cultural organizations that develop and sustain Wichita’s overall quality of life and economic vitality.

Organizations chosen for funding through the Cultural Funding grant for 2020 include:

  • American Guild of Organists
  • Ballet Wichita
  • Chamber Music at the Barn
  • Fisch Bowl, Inc.
  • Friends of Great Plains Nature Center
  • Griot’s Storytelling Institute
  • Music Theatre for Young People
  • Opera Kansas
  • Regina Klenjoski Dance Company
  • Tallgrass Film Association
  • Wichita Chamber Chorale
  • Arts Partners, Inc
  • A.R.I.S.E. Ensemble
  • The Kansas African American Museum
  • Wichita Public Library Foundation
  • Exploration Place
  • Music Theatre Wichita
  • Orpheum Performing Arts Centre
  • Ulrich Museum
  • Wichita Grand Opera
  • Mark Arts
  • Wichita Symphony Society
  • Harvester Arts
  • Emerald City Chorus – Sweet Adelines
  • Laughing Feet

Developing Arts Grants provide technical assistance for capacity building to arts and cultural organizations with annual operational budgets under $50,000 that create, present or produce year-round cultural activities and arts programs in Wichita at the grassroots level, including underserved neighborhoods, communities, or special populations. Support organizations are eligible to apply.

Organizations chosen for funding for 2020 include:

  • Wichita Jazz Festival

Artist Access Grants provide professional development support for individual artists. Funds may be used for attending advanced workshops, conferences, master classes or seminars, participating in artist residencies, engaging in activities that will propel a professional career, among many others. Grant awards range from $100 to $1,000, depending on need and program specifics.

Artists chosen for funding for 2020 include:

  • Christopher Gulick
  • Daniel Gegen
  • Alec Lang
  • Carter Tholl
  • Tina Thomas
  • Bruce Van Osdel
  • Trish Van Osdel

“Cultural Institutions” are arts and cultural organizations which have operations and activities in a facility that is owned and/or operated by the City of Wichita. The organization’s audited annual revenues must be in excess of $50,000 for at least two preceding years. Cultural Institutions are funded by entering into a three-year Operational Partnership Agreements. Organizations which qualify as “Cultural Institutions” include the following:

  • Mid-America All-Indian Center  
  • Wichita Art Museum
  • Wichita Historical Museum
  • Kansas Aviation Museum
  • Museum of World Treasures

Applications for the 2021 funding cycle can be found at www.wichita.gov/arts/pages/CFC.aspx.