Nonprofit COVID-19 Assistance

Nonprofit Assistance Program grants provide flexible funding to meet a variety of needs, including but not limited to rent, utilities, technology, infrastructure, payroll, insurance, training and personal protective equipment (PPE).  Funds will provide relief to help nonprofits continue to serve communities.

Person giving clothes to two other people

COVID-19 is straining individual, family, community and societal resources.  Many community-based nonprofits are small grassroots organizations with direct roots, access, and accountability to underserved communities. These nonprofits have been working to address inequity and disparities in the same communities where the COVID-19 crisis threatens to widen existing disparities.

Gov. Jay Inslee directed Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funds to the Department of Commerce to help with COVID-19 relief efforts across Washington. Part of this assistance will provide grant funding for small, grassroots nonprofit organizations working to address disparities and inequities exacerbated by increased need and decreased funding due to COVID-19, including a variety of community and youth development programs.

The grants provide flexible funding to meet the variety of needs, including but not limited to rent, utilities, technology, infrastructure, payroll, insurance training and PPE.  The funding will provide relief to help nonprofits continue to serve their communities.

Our goal is to target limited resources to those with the greatest needs while working to distribute funds equitably.

To see a summary of Commerce’s COVID-19 response efforts, including nonprofit grant distribution, visit our summary page.

Commerce will not provide this assistance directly to the public. Application and grant assistance will be provided through partners. 

Current Programs

Nonprofit Recovery Grants: Applications open May 10-24, 2021

The Washington State Department of Commerce is pleased to partner with ArtsFund to administer over $10 million in Nonprofit Community Recovery (NCR) grants. Washington State Department of Commerce is partnering with ArtsFund to center the grants program on arts, cultural, science, and heritage organizations. Grants will also be awarded to nonprofit neighborhood organizations, and sports and recreation organizations. Grants range from $2,500 to $25,000. Information and application at

Closed Programs

WA Equity Relief Fund for Nonprofits

The WA Equity Relief Fund is offering funding for nonprofits that are led by and serve BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) communities most impacted by the global pandemic.  Relief payments will provide flexible, general operating support for these important organizations. Eligible applicants must be a 501(c)3 nonprofit or a community-based organization fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)3 nonprofit.

The Washington State Department of Commerce is partnering with Philanthropy Northwest to administer $2 million of relief funding from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act through an open application to community-based nonprofits, and tribal organizations most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to unprecedented impacts on nonprofit organizations including experiencing increased demand or disruption/creation of services; cancellation of contracts, programs, services or other funding losses such as canceled fundraisers, reduced donations and/or other issues affecting staff and volunteer capacity. We know these impacts are disproportionately experienced by organizations led by and serving Black, Indigenous, Asian (especially Southeast Asian), Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander, Latinx and undocumented communities. These impacts are also pronounced among economically vulnerable people living in rural, remote and tribal communities.  

The deadline to apply is Nov. 6, 2020.

If you need technical or translation assistance for this grant please email and provide your name, phone number, the county you live in, and what language you need assistance in and we will help connect you to someone. 

Available translations:

Somali | Cambodian | Spanish | Vietnamese | Korean | Lao | Russian | Chinese


The Washington Youth Development Nonprofit Relief Fund

Children running at daycareYouth development programs have been uniquely positioned to address the needs of children and youth furthest from opportunity during this challenging time. During the pandemic, youth development programs have quickly adapted their services to provide responsive supports for youth and families, including emergency childcare, social-emotional supports, academic mentoring, virtual programming and even basic needs supports for the youth and families to whom they are deeply connected. Under this program, a one-time investment intended to provide relief to organizations that have stretched to support young people most impacted by COVID and furthest from educational justice during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Applications have now closed. The deadline was Oct. 6, 2020. More information on the Request for Proposal (RFP), application and review process is available at Schools Out Washington is working to score applications and notify awardees in November and to issue payments in December.

ArtsWA CARES Act Relief Grants

Washington sConcert Halltate-based nonprofit arts and cultural organizations, including tribal organizations, and fiscally sponsored groups have seen a loss in programming and events because of the COVID-19 pandemic. In partnership with the Washington State Arts Commission, a total of $1.5 million dollars in grants will be available to arts and culture organizations throughout the state.

ArtsWA was accepting applications for CARES Act Relief Grants. The application period is now closed Washington state-based nonprofit arts and cultural organizations, including tribal organizations, and fiscally sponsored groups impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic were eligible.

Does your organization need help applying for resources? Technical assistance from trusted community messengers

small business owner holding open sign

The effects of COVID-19 have negatively affected all Washingtonians, but Washington’s small nonprofit organizations and small businesses, especially those from marginalized communities, have been hit very hard. Commerce strongly supports an equitable recovery for all Washingtonians. We are investing in and partnering with organizations that can provide assistance with cultural and linguistic relevance for organizations affected by COVID-19. Learn more.



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