Resiliency Support for Cultural Organizations - Guidelines and Application Instructions

News Article
A woman in a traditional Mexican, colorful folk dance dress dances. In the upper left is the City of Portland seal with the words "American Rescue Plan" and "Investing in Portland"
Applications are due Thursday, April 7, 2022
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The City of Portland is providing Resiliency Support for Cultural Organizations using funds from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARPA). This support is for community-based cultural nonprofit organizations that are led by and serving Black, Indigenous, other People of Color (BIPOC) and/or other historically under-served and under-represented communities. This also includes, but is not limited to, organizations led by and serving LGBTQIA+ communities and organizations led by and serving people with disabilities. These funds are designed to reinvigorate community-based artistic programming that was lost due to Covid impacts.

A cultural organization is defined as a community-based non-profit organization that is led by and serving BIPOC and other historically under-served and under-represented communities. These organizations center the lived experiences of historically marginalized communities, including but not limited to:

  • the impact of structural and individual racism on the community,
  • knowledge of specific disparities documented in the community and how that influences the structure of their program or service, and
  • ability to describe the community’s cultural practices, health and safety beliefs/practices, positive cultural identity/pride/resilience, immigration dynamics, religious beliefs, etc. and how their services have been adapted to those cultural norms.

BIPOC and other historically marginalized communities have enriched the City of Portland through entrepreneurship, tourism, housing, entertainment, artistic contributions, and cultural legacy, making Portland one of the most vibrant places to work and live in the United States. Arts and culture programs are the root of intercultural exchange, talent development, identity formation, community building, art forms, and creativity that make this possible. 

Available Funding

A total of $500,000 is available. The City intends to award support in amounts ranging from $25,000 to $70,000.

Eligibility – Who Can Apply?

  • Applicants must be incorporated as a non-profit 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) cultural organization.
  • Applicants must be based in the City of Portland. 
  • Applicants must demonstrate a history of leadership and service to Portland’s cultural communities through mission-driven and program specific activities and efforts.

     Additional Application Requirements

  • Applicants will need to demonstrate the existence of artistic programming and/or arts-based services prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, and document how the pandemic caused loss of revenue and/or opportunities that impacted the organization’s ability to deliver arts services and outcomes during the period of March, 2020 through February, 2022.   
  • All funded activities must take place within the City of Portland. (Map available here.)
  • Funded activities should support arts programs that center youth, families, and community engagement.
  • Funded program activities should align with the values and objectives described below.

Values and Objectives

This program is designed to support arts and culture programs that are rooted in the following values and objectives:

     Cultural Traditions

  • Strengthening personal identity and familial bonds through prosocial activities
  • Building community through intercultural engagement
  • Connecting youth with adults through intergenerational relationships
  • Honoring ancestral lineage, elders, culture of origin customs and arts expression, languages and dialects 

    Bicultural Experiences

  • Exploring cultural expression within and outside of dominant culture narratives, behaviors, and customs
  • Expanding personal expression through new codes of language, behavior, and communication
  • Developing new relationships to dominant spaces/places for living and gathering
  • Expressing the impact of oppression and internalized oppression

    Innovation and Risk

  • Interrupting and/or interrogating dominant culture practices, core beliefs, and customs
  • Calling in oppression with compassion, communication, and understanding
  • Demanding social justice, racial equity, and gender equality
  • Generating new ideas, methods, and frames for cultural expression


  • Leaving behind a cultural richness to be enjoyed by generations to come
  • Forging new spaces and places for the future of cultural expression

Review Process

The application includes five questions, which appear below. All applications that meet the eligibility requirements will be reviewed and scored by a panel of artists whose experiences are rooted in cultural expression, community engagement, and social justice. Reviewers will award up to 10 points for each question, for total of 50 potential points per application. The City Arts Program will award funding to the highest scoring applications as determined by the review panel.  

Proposed awards will be announced in early May. Organizations slated to receive funding will need to sign agreements with the City of Portland before funds can be distributed. The agreements will describe all attribution requirements and funding restrictions. In addition, the City will invite organizations receiving support to participate in surveys and share their stories in the future.


February 25, 2022    Applications open               

April 7, 2022             Applications due by 11:59 p.m.

Early May, 2022        Awards announced

Late May, 2022         Funding agreements signed

June, 2022                 Funds dispersed


For questions, contact For general information about the American Rescue Plan visit

How to apply

Send an email to with the subject line “Resiliency Support Application” and attach answers to the five questions below in MS Word or PDF format. You may also include up to three supplemental attachments such as photographs, brochures and news articles that help illustrate your organization’s arts programming.

This program is designed to support arts programming rooted in cultural traditions, bicultural experiences, innovation and risk, and legacy. Please answer the following questions to help us understand how your program will uphold some or all these values.

  1. What is the mission and history of your organization? What cultural community or communities do you serve? (Limit 500 words.)
  1. Describe your arts and culture programming, community partners, people served, and program outcomes. (Limit 500 words.)
  1. What else you would like us to know about your arts and culture programming and how it relates to the values and objectives of this program? (Limit 500 words.)

To receive funding from the American Rescue Plan, cultural organizations will need to certify that the Covid-19 pandemic impacted their ability to deliver arts programming over the last two years. Please answer the following questions to help us understand how Covid-19 has impacted your programs, and your plans for the future.

  1. How did the Covid-19 pandemic impact your arts and culture programming in terms of lost revenue, redirected revenue, or program delivery? (Limit 500 words.)
  1. Describe how American Rescue Plan funds could help you reinvigorate and/or reimagine your arts and culture programming in the future. How do you anticipate investing these funds? (Limit 500 words.)

Please send your responses, in MS Word or PDF format, plus up to three additional attachments of your choosing, to, subject line “Resiliency Support Application.” All applications are due Thursday, April 7, 2022 at 11:59 p.m. No late submissions will be considered.

Sometimes attaching large files can prevent successful delivery of application materials. Please email or call 503-865-6685 if the City does not acknowledge receipt of your application within 24 hours.