Manitoba Music Opens Applications for COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund

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New Fund to Deliver Urgent Micro Grants to Self-Employed Artists and Industry Workers Facing Financial Hardship, Deadline March 31

Manitoba Music is accepting applications for an emergency relief fund to help self-employed music entrepreneurs in Manitoba suffering financial hardship due to lost income and unrecoverable expenses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Applications will be accepted online until March 31 at 11:59 PM CST via Support will be in the form of micro grants. Additional deadlines will be announced if there are remaining funds.

The fund is open to self-employed artists and industry workers who reside in Manitoba and are experiencing a financial crisis due to cancelations as a result of COVID-19 between March 12 and April 30, 2020. 

Manitoba Music’s Board of Directors is seeding the fund with $20,000. Supporters can also donate directly to the fund at Manitoba Music is a not-for-profit, member-based association that does not have charitable status and donors will not receive a charitable receipt.

“We'd like to thank all who have generously donated to the fund. As we continue to experience this global crisis and grapple with the potential impacts on the music industry, we recognize the extraordinary importance of fast emergency relief. We understand that the demand for this fund may exceed our resources, but Manitoba Music is committed to doing what we can to support our community and really appreciate all the music champions helping us,” says Sean McManus, Manitoba Music’s executive director. 

Manitoba Music also encourages music champions to continue other forms of support, including buying music and merch directly from artists, direct donations, and donations to the Unison Benevolent Fund, which has launched a COVID-19 relief fund for Canadian music professionals. 

The music industry is an important economic force in Manitoba. There are over 4,300 FTE jobs created by the Manitoba music industry, $55.1 million in labour income, and $93.8 million in GDP (source: SoundCheck: An Economic Impact Analysis of Manitoba’s Music Industry, 2016). The majority of people working in music are individual entrepreneurs that may not eligible for traditional avenues of government support.

For more info or to apply or donate, please visit

Find more info about other COVID-19-related industry updates at

Updated March 25 from an earlier announcement on March 20, 2020 to reflect the application process.

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