CARES Act and Books that Open Up Worlds

From the Director Dena Wortzel

In these tough times, I’m happy to share some hopeful news. Financial help is coming for nonprofits who work in the humanities! Last week we learned that $75 million is set aside for the National Endowment for the Humanities, of the roughly $2 trillion in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, or the “CARES Act.” Some of these NEH funds will be distributed to state humanities councils like the WHC, to help us respond in our states. We are so grateful to our legislators for understanding the vital role that our cultural organizations play in lifting us up as individuals, and in sustaining our communities.

As I write, we don’t know when we will receive these emergency funds or how much we will receive. And while we are hopeful, the news from organizations around the state about the impact of the virus is sobering. No amount that we receive will meet the need among all the nonprofits who bring the humanities to communities throughout Wisconsin.

I can tell you this about whatever emergency funding we receive:

  • No CARES funds will be used for WHC overhead. 100% will directly serve communities throughout Wisconsin.
  • No grants that we award with CARES funds will require matching funds from grant recipients.

Once we have CARES funds in hand, we will work as fast as possible to start making grants to eligible nonprofit organizations.

So please subscribe to our ENewsletter to get future emails from me and check Facebook regularly. We will make a general announcement as soon as we have funds available and a process in place with clear information on eligibility, funding criteria, and as simple an application process as we can manage given federal requirements.  In the meantime, we will do our best to answer questions but please refer to the website before contacting us if your question is about CARES or other grants.  The website will always have the most current information on funding opportunities.

Be well, and thank you for being with us in these truly difficult times.





P.S.  I’ll be in touch over the coming weeks, but don’t hesitate to contact me via email anytime. Meanwhile, all administrative processes related to our regular grant program are continuing normally.


It is books that are the key to the wide world; if you can’t do anything else, read all that you can. — Jane Hamilton

Many of us are wondering what we can do…to keep sane, keep ourselves entertained, and keep engaged with the wide world right now. When in doubt, we say, pick up a book.

So we asked for some recommendations. Here are three+ that we hope will point a new direction in your literary explorations!

Thanks to Maria Parrot-Ryan, Roberta Maguire, and Joe Salmons for sharing. Please be in touch if you have a book recommendation to share!


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