Helis and LEH Contribute to Emergency Relief Program
NEW ORLEANS — The Helis Foundation said it has joined forces with the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities to help protect New Orleans’ cultural institutions and organizations by contributing a gift to the LEH’s Louisiana Culture Care Fund.
The fund provides emergency relief grants to humanities organizations impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, with awards ranging between $3,000 and $20,000 and designated for operational expenses.
The Helis Foundation’s gift will support organizations with a strong humanities focus in the greater New Orleans area. According to recent data collected by the LEH, cultural organizations in the greater New Orleans area—hit hardest by the pandemic—are facing over $17 million in lost revenue as a result of closures, loss of donations and more.
“Now more than ever, The Helis Foundation is committed to doing everything we can to support and protect New Orleans’ cultural landscape,” said David Kerstein, president of The Helis Foundation. “The LEH has a proven track record of efficacy and diligence, and by contributing to the Louisiana Culture Care Fund, we can be sure that funds will be quickly and responsibly distributed to places that need it the most.”
The initial funding for the Louisiana Culture Care Fund was provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the federal CARES Act. To date, the LEH has awarded more than $375,000 in grants to 42 humanities organizations in 18 parishes, with applications reviewed on a rolling basis to provide funds as quickly as possible.
“Our state’s cultural resources are threatened like never before,” said Miranda Restovic, executive director and president of the LEH. “The Helis Foundation’s support allows us to continue the important work of protecting these resources—after all, Louisiana wouldn’t be this amazing, fascinating place without our history and our people and all that they create.”
Louisiana Culture Care Fund grants supported by The Helis Foundation’s gift are available to 501(c)(3) non-profit cultural organizations in the New Orleans area with a strong humanities focus, such as museums, historic sites and archives, as well as the city’s diverse array of humanities-focused media, festivals and more. For more information about how the humanities are defined, visit www.neh.gov/about.
The funds are designated for operational expenses, including but not limited to: staff retention (payroll and benefits), rent, mortgage and utilities. Awards are based on the annual operating budget of the applicant organization. Applications will be accepted through June 30, or until funds are expended. A sample application may be found here. All Louisiana Culture Care Fund applications are subject to the same rigorous review process—details on criteria are available here.
For more information about the Louisiana Culture Care Fund, including eligibility requirements, visit www.leh.org.