Guidance for Our Partners and Grantees During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Dear Partners and Grantees,

We hope this message finds you and your loved ones well. As we continue to address the challenges presented by the current public health crisis, the Terra Foundation has been working to find ways to support our grantees and local Chicago community. 

The Terra Foundation is proud to be an initial funder of the Arts for Illinois fund, which will support arts organizations as well as individual artists and artisans, with one-time grants of $1,500 for individuals and between $6,000 and $30,000 for organizations. 

We encourage others to join us in helping the creative community through this challenging time. 

We continue to reach out to our partners in Chicago and around the world as we understand the impact of this crisis on your work, and we continue to look for ways to support our communities. We are committed to being as flexible as possible regarding your projects that have been impacted. We will get through this together.

May you, your colleagues, family, and friends remain healthy and safe. 


The Terra Foundation Team


For Our Grantees

Is the Terra Foundation for American Art open?
Yes, the Terra Foundation is open; however, health and safety of our staff and community is our top priority. Our staff at both our locations in Chicago and Paris have been working remotely since March 16, 2020. All events at the Paris Center have been canceled, and the Paris Center Library has been closed until further notice

How can I reach the Terra Foundation?
The easiest way to reach the Foundation staff is by email. Contact information may be found on our staff directory page. If you have a grant related inquiry and do not know who to contact, please email You may also call our main number (+1 312 664 3939) and leave a message for a staff member.

Are grant payments still being processed?
Yes, the foundation will make all grant payments according to the schedule originally outlined in the grant agreement. If you require future payments sooner than originally scheduled, please reach out to your Terra Foundation program director. We may not be able to accommodate all requests for early payment but will do so if we can.

Have grant application or reporting deadlines changed?
For now, grant deadlines remain the same. However, if you require an extension on your letter of inquiry, grant proposal, or grant report, please reach out to your Terra Foundation program director. We will do our best to accommodate such requests.

Any future application deadline changes will be announced on our website or via our e-news. Sign up for our e-news.

If a scheduled payment is dependent on a report and you are unable to complete the report on time, please contact your Program Director to discuss an alternative schedule.

What should I do if the schedule, budget, or plans for my funded project have changed as a result of COVID-19?
We have heard from many of you with active grants for projects taking place over the next few months. It is your decision whether to postpone, reimagine, or cancel your projects, and the Terra Foundation is committed to being as flexible as possible regarding grant implications. The foundation will accommodate reasonable schedule changes (including no-cost extensions) and budget reallocations.

Please reach out to your Terra Foundation program director or to so that we may work with you to determine how to adjust the grant to accommodate new schedules and budgets. It is important that changes be discussed with program staff and documented via emails or online requirement forms so that you and the foundation both have a record of the changes.

My funded project involves travel. What should I do?
The Terra Foundation will accommodate reasonable requests for schedule changes. When you are ready to reschedule, please keep the following in mind:

  • Book fully refundable lodging ONLY. This likely means that travelers will need to stay in hotels rather than apartment-sharing services like Airbnb or VRBO.
  • Book flights whenever it makes sense to do so. However, if you need to reschedule, the foundation will ask for a schedule change and a budget revision before you rebook.

What if I need to cancel my funded project?
It is important for a representative from your organization to speak by phone with the Terra Foundation program director associated with your grant to discuss options, as there may be other ways the funds could be used to achieve goals related to the funded project.

What should I do if I’ve canceled or postponed my funded project and I’ve incurred cost that cannot be refunded?
We understand that it may be impossible to recover all grant funds associated with projects that were postponed or cancelled. If grant funds have been expended and cannot be refunded, please contact your Terra Foundation program director. The foundation may request an expenditure report for the project, as well as a revised budget if there are plans to reschedule at a later date.

The COVID-19 crisis has strained my organization. Can the Terra Foundation help?
We understand that organizations will be dealing with the short- and long-term effects of this global pandemic for the foreseeable future.

As such, the Terra Foundation has contributed to the Arts for Illinois Relief Fund. Through this fund, Illinois-based artists and arts institutions are eligible for unrestricted funding to make up for revenue lost during the COVID-19 crisis. Please visit Arts for Illinois for more information.

This FAQ will be updated should additional funds become available for COVID-19 recovery.

If you have questions, contact your Terra Foundation program director or