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Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS

National Grants Program



2014 Grant Rounds

Until we can assess the success of our current fundraising campaign, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS will not be able to accept applications in 2014 from any service providers that have not previously been a part of BC/EFA’s National Grants Program.  Please contact Brian O’Donnell at 212.840.0770, ext. 226, for further information.

Food Service and Meal Delivery Grants
The deadline for the Food Service and Meal Delivery grant round was December 13, 2013. On January 23, 2014, $1,565,000 was awarded to 117 service organizations. View the complete list of 2014 awards.

Nationally Recognized Service and Public Policy Grants
Applications for this grant round will be available in February 2014. The deadline will be March 14, 2014. This round is by invitation only.

National Grants for Emergency Assistance Programs, Direct Services, Substance Abuse and Harm Reduction Services, Quality of Life Programs
Applications for this grant round will be available on April 18, 2014, and will be mailed to those organizations that received a grant in 2013. The deadline will be May 23, 2014. Unfortunately, we will be unable to accept grant proposals from organizations that have not received grants from Broadway Cares in the past. Grant applications will be reviewed in July 2014 with checks sent before September 30, 2014.


Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is one of the nation's largest HIV/AIDS-related grant-making foundations, granting approximately $8 million annually and more than $145 million dollars since 1987.

Equity Fights AIDS and Broadway Cares were founded as separate AIDS-related fundraising organizations in 1988. Since their merger in May of 1992, Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS (BC/EFA) has had an unparalleled history of fundraising and grant-making in response to the AIDS epidemic.

BC/EFA’s ability to keep pace with the epidemic by continuing to raise millions of dollars year after year is a testament to the ingenuity, resourcefulness and generosity of the American theatre community.   More significantly, it is also a testament to the lasting impact the AIDS epidemic has had on the artists and professionals in the theater, dance and classical music industries. It is through their efforts that the majority of this fundraising is achieved.

Funding support has been divided between support for The Actors Fund, the employee assistance program of the entertainment industry, and BC/EFA’s National Grants Program, which assists hundreds of community-based organizations that provide services for people with AIDS and their families at a grassroots community level nationwide.

BC/EFA’s National Grants Program

The ongoing funding support provided through the National Grants Program is an essential component of BC/EFA’s commitment, specifically to people with AIDS outside of the entertainment industry and the organizations that serve them.  

BC/EFA’s National Grants Program was conceptualized with two objectives. The first was to responsibly grant funds as quickly as possible so that organizations responding to the AIDS crisis would be able to address the constant state of emergency that people with AIDS faced during the early days of the epidemic.

The second was to spread BC/EFA’s resources to as many organizations throughout the country as possible in order to create an awareness of HIV/AIDS among service providers and to use relatively modest grants made by BC/EFA to leverage greater resources to address the needs of all communities affected by HIV/AIDS. 

The HIV epidemic has grown and intensified beyond the gay community, particularly in communities of color, with a high incidence among women and their children, as well as in persons with substance abuse histories.   HIV has always reinforced or created economic hardship. Therefore, BC/EFA saw a need to focus its National Grants Program on direct services such as food programs, support programs for clothing and personal hygiene items, and emergency assistance programs to avoid evictions or loss of health insurance. 

At the same time, BC/EFA was compelled to develop funding options that supported the integrity of families and the quality of life of people living with AIDS. Funding became available for family support, including bereavement support, burials for family members, summer camps, recreational and cultural outings and alternative therapies.

BC/EFA also demonstrated its leadership by being among the first to fund needle exchange programs, long before most other funders supported these programs, and even before New York State decriminalized syringe possession.

One Grant Round Per Year – Becomes Three

Initially BC/EFA’s National Grants Program committee met once a year to award grants to AIDS service organizations in six categories:  Food Services; Emergency Assistance; Direct Services; One-Time Expense; Substance Abuse and Harm Reduction Services; and Quality of Life Programs.

In March 2002, BC/EFA initiated a second grant round for a small subset of Nationally Recognized AIDS Service Organizations, as well as a number of organizations doing advocacy and public policy work that affects the hundreds of service providers BC/EFA funds.  These are organizations whose mission as providers of HIV/AIDS services and/or advocacy is nationally recognized as pivotal within a large geographic area or an area with a particularly high concentration of those living with HIV/AIDS.  

BC/EFA serves as a grant making conduit between Broadway audiences (groups that immediately respond to the fundraising appeals made by entertainment professionals) and people living with HIV/AIDS. Consistent with this ideal, our grant making targets direct services. Nothing embodies this concept more than ensuring a person who is sick has a decent meal. In January of 2006, BC/EFA determined to make the Food Service Organizations category its own separate grant round affording the opportunity for a larger award than was available in the overall national grant round awarded every spring.

We heard from both the entertainment community and our donors who said that while they are still deeply concerned about HIV/AIDS, they were also worried about the ability of people homebound with other life threatening diseases such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and chronic hepatitis to receive regularly delivered meals. In the last two years, a number of the largest meal delivery programs have tried expanding their services to include those with other debilitating illnesses.  Because we believe that this expansion of services is a smart, strategic plan, beginning in January 2006, BC/EFA offered those food service and meal delivery programs with expanded missions the opportunity to receive larger grants of up to $35,000.   This not only offers assistance to more people in need, but in doing so encourages increased funding opportunities in a very difficult fundraising climate, thereby ensuring that delivered meals will continue to be provided to people with AIDS for the foreseeable future.

Past Giving

Since its founding in 1988 through June 2011, more than $76 million has been distributed by BC/EFA through our National Grants Program.

Broadway Cares was created in 1988 specifically to raise funds within the theatre community to be distributed through grants to AIDS service organizations in New York City and across the country.  During the four years from 1988 through the merger of Broadway Cares with Equity Fights AIDS in May 1992, $1,067,000 was granted to 85 AIDS service organizations by a committee made up entirely of theatrical professionals. Following the 1992 merger and through 1996, this same committee granted an additional $4,740,000.

In 1996, the National Grants Committee was refigured to include both AIDS service providers and those in the theatre community active in raising funds for BC/EFA. Since then, BC/EFA has granted $64 million more to more than 450 AIDS and family service organizations nationwide.

2014 National Grants Rounds

BC/EFA has completed the first of three grant rounds that make up the 2014 National Grants Program.

The three grant rounds are:

2014 Food Service and Meal Delivery Program Grants

On January 23, 2014, the National Grants Committee, chaired by BC/EFA Trustee Ira Mont, met to consider applications in the Food Service grant round. $1,565,000 was awarded to 117 Food Service and Meal Delivery Programs. View the complete list of 2014 awards.

2014 Nationally Recognized Service and Public Policy Grants
The grants committee will meet in March to award these grants.

2014 National Grants for Emergency Assistance Programs, Direct Services, Substance Abuse and Harm Reduction Services, Quality of Life Programs
The grants committee will meet in June to award these grants.



For all inquiries and further information, please contact: Brian O’Donnell, grants manager, at odonnell@broadwaycares.org or at 212.840.0770, ext 226.

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Broadway Cares/Equity Fights for AIDS

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Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, tax-exempt charitable organization.

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