WASHINGTON D.C. (CelebrityAccess) — The National Independent Venue Foundation announced it has re-launched its Emergency Relief Fund to provide economic relief to independent, music and comedy venues, festivals, and promoters across the United States.
The fund, which was first launched in response to the coronavirus pandemic in October 2020 by NIVF’s parent, the National Independent Venue Association, seeks to assist venue owners and promoters who are facing severe financial challenges.
Since its debut, the NIVA Emergency Relief Fund awarded $3,170,000 to entities in 40 states; $2,800,000 to 148 independent venues and $370,000 to 18 independent promoters, using funds sources from thousands of individuals around the country as well as corporate and institutional partners such as Mast-Jägermeister US, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Spotify, Universal Music Group, the Gerald L. Lenndard Foundation, Sony Corporation, and Fender Musical Instruments Corp.
Additional support for the fund was provided by YouTube Music, who backed SOSFest, a fundraising event benefiting the NIVA ERF.
According to NIVA, while the fund previously focused solely on providing relief from the pernicious industry malaise of COVID-19, the latest iteration will expand the fund’s mission to cover additional unforeseeable circumstances, including natural disasters, and future pandemics, while providing a backstop for companies still struggling with the impacts of COVID-19.
“These venues and promoters contribute in immeasurable ways to the vibrancy of the nation’s diverse communities and economy,” said Lisa Gedgaudas, co-chair of the NIVF ERF Committee and program manager, Cultural Affairs Arts & Venues with the city and county of Denver. “While NIVF’s ERF is limited in resources compared to the federal funding we have seen, it is our social responsibility to have this program in place to help represent our independent contributors that are hardest hit and facing severe and catastrophic emergencies beyond their control. From pandemics to fire and floods, the new evolution of the ERF program stands in preparation for a stronger recovery in the face of various climate emergencies that may continue to impact independent venues in our communities over time.”
Applications are being accepted on a rolling basis throughout the year and reviewed as received on a case-by-case basis by the ERF Committee under the direction of the NIVF Board of Directors.
“The long-term continuation of this program will support venues and promoters across the country when a crisis occurs,” said Hal Real, president of the NIVF Board and World Cafe Live in Philadelphia. “We encourage live music fans and sponsors to donate to our Emergency Relief Fund so we are ready to assist the next time independent venues and promoters are in dire need of assistance.” This Emergency Relief Fund is just one of several programs that NIVF is developing to proactively support the independently owned and operated anchors of our communities.
More detailed information about the fund, including a link for those that wish to apply or donate, can be found at www.nivferf.org.