COVID-19 UPDATE: Two more reports to help deal with the crisis

Report 1: Indiana Originals launches new app to help independent businesses

A new mobile phone application, created by Indiana Originals, helps Hoosiers find and support local businesses faster and easier. Through the app, Indiana Originals is supplying a curated list of Indiana owned-and-operated companies, headquartered in Indiana and not part of an out-of-state chain. The application features a map allowing users to select a location and see Indiana Originals in that area.

“Independent businesses put three to five times more money back into our local economy,” said Mel McMahon, co-founder of Indiana Originals. “Our members want to stand out from their national competitors and let the consumers know they are here creating healthier, stronger communities and more jobs in Indiana. We exist to encourage a local preference and facilitate greater use of local services, art, food and more. Every business on and our app is certified local. When you see the badge, you know you are supporting local.”

Each business featured on the website and the application has applied for Indiana Originals membership. Consumers can search the website and application for free. Businesses pay a membership fee to be listed and receive a variety of tools to grow their business and show Hoosier pride. Download the application for free in the Apple App Store or Google Play.

For more information about Indiana Originals, visit

Report 2: Indiana Humanities offers over $500,000 in funding relief

Nonprofit organizations that provide public humanities programming are invited to apply for funding relief due to the current COVID-19 pandemic. The grants will range from $5,000 to $15,000, depending on the size of the organization’s budget, and can be used only for general operating support.

Funding for the grants, which will be administered by Indiana Humanities, has been provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act economic stabilization plan appropriated by the U.S. Congress. More than $500,000 will be awarded to Indiana humanities organizations.

The deadline for the Indiana Humanities CARES Grant application is May 8. Award notifications will be made on May 22.

Only tax-exempt organizations whose core mission is to provide public humanities programs may apply. This includes (but is not limited to): libraries and archives; historical societies/heritage groups; museums (with a humanities focus); historical homes and sites; and other nonprofits whose core mission centers on developing and implementing humanities programming.

Groups that do not offer strong humanities programming, as well as religious organizations, government agencies, K-12 school and colleges and universities, will be ineligible.

“Humanities organizations are vital cultural organizations at the heart of our communities,” said Keira Amstutz, president and CEO of Indiana Humanities. “We are grateful to the U.S. Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities for providing us with this opportunity to support these essential community anchors or institutions during this time of need. Our goal is to get these funds out across the state quickly and equitably, just as intended.”

Additional CARES funds from the National Endowment for the Arts for arts and cultural organizations will be available through the Indiana Arts Commission. In total more than $1 million will be available to cultural institutions in Indiana.

A webinar with additional information will be available on April 29. For more information and to register for the webinar, visit Questions can be directed to George Hanlin, director of grants, at