Sustaining Creative Workers Initiative

Regional Arts Victoria is working in partnership with the Victorian State Government on the Sustaining Creative Workers initiative.

The initiative seeks to support the continued work of Victoria’s independent creative practitioners who have been negatively impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19).

Sustaining Creative Workers delivers quick-response funding to independent creative practitioners, sole traders, freelancers, collectives and micro-organisations/businesses whose work and livelihoods have been negatively impacted by coronavirus.

It will support creatives, across all creative disciplines, to continue to work in their creative field, adapt to change, research and develop projects, develop their product or skills, and/or connect with new audiences or markets.

The regional stream of the program is supported by the Victorian Government through Creative Victoria and administered by Regional Arts Victoria.

The Sustaining Creative Workers initiative guidelines for regional applicants are available for download here.

Funding available

Applications in the regional stream will be accepted for requests of:

  • Up to $5,000 for individuals, sole traders and freelancers
  • Up to $10,000 for collectives, micro-organisations and businesses*

* Micro organisations/businesses are those that employ less than 5 Full Time Equivalent staff.


Who can apply

Sustaining Creative Workers accepts applications from regional** Victorian-based independent creative practitioners, sole traders, freelancers and creative micro organisations/businesses, with at least five years of experience, that have been negatively impacted by coronavirus.

Applications are encouraged from a wide range of creative disciplines including, but not limited to, visual arts/craft, literature, contemporary dance/physical performance, community creative practice, circus, cabaret, music, sound art, theatre, fashion, design, screen and digital games, multidisciplinary and experimental work.

The initiative will support activities including (but are not limited to):

o  Planning and adaptation to the newly emerged environmental context
o  Research and development
o  Products and/or skills development
o  Exploration of new ways to engage audiences for existing or new work
o  Development/exploration of markets for your creative work

Given the uncertain environment, confirmed outcomes or presentations are not required for this program.

** Please note: this information is for regional Victorian applicants. If you are based in metro or outer metro areas, are a First Peoples’ practitioner, or if you identify as a Deaf or Disabled practitioner, Creative Victoria has dedicated funding streams to support you. Head to Creative Victoria’s website to apply. 

How to apply:

Round opens: 9:00am, 30 April 2020 via SmartyGrants. A link will be available here at that time.

The program will be open on an ongoing basis and applicants can apply at any time up to 1 June 2020 or until the funding pool is exhausted. Only one application is accepted per applicant over this period.


Image: Kirsten Bradley – Why Listen to Bees. Photo by Keelan O’Hehir.

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