Events DC Announces DC Cares Program to Execute $5M Undocumented Workers Relief Package and $10M Cultural Institutions Grant Program
Critical Funding Represents Efforts to Support the DC Community and Invest in City’s Future
(Washington, DC) – June 5, 2020 – Today, Events DC, Washington DC’s official convention and sports authority, finalized its programs for the $5M undocumented workers relief fund through the DC Cares Program and the $10M Cultural Institutions Grant Program.
The DC Cares Program will provide financial assistance to workers in the District of Columbia who have been excluded from federal stimulus efforts and are experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This critical program is in partnership with the Executive Office of the Mayor and the Greater Washington Community Foundation. The Cultural Institutions Grant Program is designed to provide funding to help further enhance Washington, DC’s resident and visitor experience. Both the DC Cares Program and the grant awardees were approved by Events DC’s Board of Directors and represent an important component of the organization’s commitment to building an ever-stronger city.
“On any given day, the DC Government provides for our residents when they seek medical care, attend school, or call police for help regardless of their status. Today, Mayor Bowser applauds Events DC for showing the world that DC cares for all of our residents," said John Falcicchio, Acting Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development.
"While we are known for our work in conventions and meetings, sports and entertainment, Events DC is deeply committed to the local DC community and its residents, many of whom form the backbone of our restaurant and hospitality industry. Supporting our undocumented community is personal —my grandfather came to this country when he was 13 with nothing. He was as an immigrant and couldn’t get a job because of his last name and how he looked. He was hired in a hotel restaurant and began his journey in America. We owe it to our friends in the undocumented community to share in the success we have as a city. The success of our work and projects depend on the vibrancy of our city, thriving non-profits and cultural institutions. The undocumented workers relief fund and the Cultural Institutions Grant Program will help serve our neighbors and make our diverse city stronger and more resilient," stated Max Brown, Chairman, Board of Directors, Events DC. "The relief fund distribution is a critical step forward in helping our city get back on track following the devastation of the pandemic. We also extend our congratulations to the organizations that have been awarded cultural institution grants, each of them is eminently deserving and a terrific example of what we can achieve together to enhance our world-class city.”
The DC Cares Program
The distribution for the $5 million undocumented workers relief funds will be managed through the Greater Washington Community Foundation with the purchase of pre-paid debit cards in the amount of $1,000 per card. The Community Foundation will then disseminate the pre-paid debit cards to designated community-based organizations in collaboration with the Executive Office of the Mayor. The identified community-based organizations will issue the pre-paid debit cards to eligible undocumented workers determined by criteria set forth by the Mayor’s Office.
The Community Foundation is a tax-exempt public charity that manages hundreds of charitable giving funds on behalf of generous individuals, families, and businesses in the Washington, DC metro area. The community-based organization currently designated by the Mayor’s Office to receive the pre-paid debit cards include the following:
- Bread for the City
- The Central American Resource Center (CARECEN)
- Latin American Youth Center (LAYC)
- Mary’s Center
Events DC will continue to work with the Community Foundation to implement ongoing efforts surrounding the DC Cares program to provide future financial assistance to DC workers who by reason of their status do not have access to other COVID-19-related public relief programs. The DC CARES program will be administered by the Community Foundation through its Greater Washington Workforce Collaborative, an initiative with the mission of enabling people to increase their skills, credentials, employment and wages with an emphasis on systems change that eliminates income gaps based on race, ethnicity and gender.
“A core part of Events DC’s mission is to serve and give back to our communities which will help to continue to propel our city forward. The critical cultural grants program will help strengthen these important cultural institutions and empower new programming for generations to come while the undocumented workers relief fund will provide a vital lifeline to our neighbors in need,” said Gregory A. O’Dell, president and chief executive officer of Events DC. “Through the relief funds and the grant program, we are humbled by the opportunity to assist District residents and the extraordinary organizations performing vital work to educate and enhance the lives of Washingtonians and visitors. Together, we look forward to continuing to enrich our community.”
Cultural Institutions Grant Program
The Events DC Cultural Institutions Grant Program is a competitive grant program that offers financial assistance to qualified non-profit cultural institutions based in the District of Columbia that engage in the conservation, interpretation, and dissemination of cultural and artistic knowledge and offer and promote activities meant to inform, educate and attract residents and visitors alike to the District of Columbia. A cultural institution is defined as a non-profit organization that supports or promotes the arts, including a museum or theater, incorporated under the laws of the District. Traditional examples of cultural institutions include museums, libraries, art galleries and studios, theaters, performing arts associations or societies.
In 2019, Events DC issued an RFP seeking proposals from cultural institutions that fit the measures set-forth for the grant program. Events DC received 43 applications, of which 30 met the eligibility criteria. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and its devastating impact on cultural institutions across the District, Events DC will implement an inclusive and equitable distribution of the grant funding, dividing all eligible applicants into three tiers, and each tier will receive the same amount. As a result, every cultural institution that submitted a proposal and met the eligibility criteria will receive some level of funding, maximizing the overall impact of the grant program.
As part of a legislative mandate by the Council of the District of Columbia, Events DC will invest in cultural organizations through the implemented Cultural Institutions Grant Program to help further enrich the cultural experience across Washington, DC for both residents and visitors alike. For more details on the Cultural Institutions Grant Program and eligibility criteria.
About Events DC
Events DC, the official convention and sports authority for the District of Columbia, delivers premier event services and flexible venues across the nation's capital. Leveraging the power of a world-class destination and creating amazing attendee experiences, Events DC generates economic and community benefits through the attraction and promotion of business, athletic, entertainment and cultural activities. Events DC oversees the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, an anchor of the District's hospitality and tourism economy that hosts more than 1.7 million visitors and generates more than $400 million annually in total economic impact, and the historic Carnegie Library at Mt. Vernon Square. Events DC manages the RFK Stadium-Armory Campus (RFK Campus), including Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium, Festival Grounds at RFK Campus, The Fields at RFK Campus, the non-military functions of the DC Armory and the Skate Park at RFK Stadium. Stay current on the 190-acre RFK Campus Redevelopment Project at www.RFKCampus.com
. Events DC also built and serves as landlord for Nationals Park, the first LEED-certified major professional sports stadium in the United States. Events DC manages Gateway DC, R.I.S.E. Demonstration Center and the Entertainment and Sports Arena (www.ESAontheRise.com
), all conveniently located in the Congress Heights neighborhood of Washington, DC.