The Cultural Council for Palm Beach County recently awarded $186,191 to several local arts organizations through a new grant program that was created using a portion of the county’s allocation of federal CARES Act funds.

Created in partnership with Palm Beach County and announced last October during the Council’s virtual State of the Cultural Sector town hall, the Palm Beach County Cultural Resiliency Fund was developed to provide direct relief to arts organizations impacted by COVID-19. The 15 organizations that received grants include:

  • Delray Beach Arts Inc. 
  • The Chamber Music Society of Palm Beach 
  • Spady Cultural Heritage Museum 
  • Lake Worth Cultural Renaissance Foundation 
  • Aequalis Inc. d.b.a. The Core Ensemble 
  • Palm Beach Shakespeare Festival Inc. 
  • The Boca Raton Philharmonic Symphonia Inc. 
  • Youth Orchestra of Palm Beach County Inc. 
  • Middle School of the Arts Foundation 
  • Blue Planet Global Education 
  • The Choral Society of the Palm Beaches 
  • Flamingo Clay Studio 
  • Delray Beach Chorale d.b.a. Schola Cantorum of Florida
  • Street Painting Festival Nat King Cole Generation Hope Inc.

Award amounts (ranging from $3,670 to $25,000) were recommended by an independent panel comprised of local arts, tourism and business leaders, and approved by the Cultural Council’s executive committee. Recommendations were made based on application strength, demonstrated financial need, operating revenue, prior receipt of CARES Act assistance and clear evidence that the organization serves an inclusive, diverse audience. 

“As attention turned to addressing the global pandemic, many local cultural organizations lost significant income from donors, corporations and foundations, as well as ticket sales,” said Dave Lawrence, the Council’s president & CEO. “Thanks to the support of the Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners, the Tourist Development Council and County Administrator Verdenia Baker, the Palm Beach County Cultural Resiliency Fund supported recovery efforts throughout Palm Beach County.”

“Receiving this grant was a lifeline – it was what we needed to keep going and pay our performers,” said Elizabeth Dashiell, co-producer of the Palm Beach Shakespeare Festival. “Last year, we all learned that the arts are vulnerable, but they’re also vital. Thanks to the Cultural Resiliency Fund, we were able to pay production costs, make educational videos and create popup performances. The fact that the Council tirelessly advocates for our cultural community is amazing. This grant ensures that we can look ahead to a full season next year. I wouldn’t be able to do that if it weren’t for the Cultural Council working so quickly to help us.”

Applications were open Oct. 26 to Nov. 20, 2020. Due to federal requirements, organizations spent their grants by Dec. 30, 2020. 

For more information about the Palm Beach County Cultural Resiliency Fund, visit www.palmbeachculture.com/grants.