The National Endowment for the Arts in Washington, D.C., has announced that it has awarded five grants totaling $900,000 to arts organizations and agencies in Maine. Out of the $84 million in new grants issued to 1,144 organizations in every U.S. state, the NEA will disperse $795,000 to the Maine Arts Commission to ensure it citizens maintain access to the arts, according to a news release from Ryan J. Leighton, marketing and communications director.

In announcing the grants, Mary Anne Carter, chairwoman of the National Endowment for the Arts, said, “These awards demonstrate the continued creativity and excellence of arts projects across America and the nimbleness of our nation’s arts organizations in the face of a national crisis that shuttered their doors for months. By funding arts projects in every U.S. state, territory, and the District of Columbia, the National Endowment for the Arts again celebrates the opportunity to make the arts available to every corner of the country and to see how the arts can heal and unite us.”

In May, the commission staff and grant panelists virtually reviewed 235 applications requesting just more thanr $1 million. Compared to last year’s funding cycle, the commission is receiving a $38,000 increase from the NEA than previous fiscal year.

“Given the fact so many people in Maine’s arts and culture sector are facing a financial crisis, I hope to distribute our funding early in the new fiscal year,” said Julie Richard, executive director of the commission.

Below is a list of grants in Maine that are part of this recent announcement by the National Endowment for the Arts: Maine totaling $900,000:

• Maine Arts Commission, $795,000, Augusta, Partnerships — State & Regional;
• Points North Institute (aka Camden International Film Festival), $25,000, Camden, Art Works — Media Arts;
• Haystack Mountain School of Crafts (aka Haystack), $15,000, Deer Isle, Art Works — Visual Arts;
• Portland Ovations, $50,000, Portland, Art Works — Presenting & Multidisciplinary Works; and
• Telling Room, $15,000, Portland, Art Works — Literary Arts.