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  • Writer's picture#LetUsBreathe Collective

Stimulus Package for Humanity: Open Call for Submissions

Updated: Apr 3, 2020


The Stimulus Package for Humanity is a micro-commission program inviting artists, creators, healers, and humanists to submit proposals to develop new content at the intersection of justice & pandemic. The effort is produced by the #LetUsBreathe Collective in partnership with FreeWrite Arts & Literacy, the Envisioning Justice Network, and Illinois Humanities.

The #LetUsBreathe Collective challenges the arts & humanities community of Chicago and beyond to write, rap, illustrate, record, collage, and otherwise illuminate this historic transformation of social systems in response to COVID-19. As efforts to flatten the curve reshape capitalism, incarceration, housing, electoral politics, and every other crevice of our personal and institutional lives, creatives have an opportunity to tell the story with a vision for what new worlds are possible. Imagination is contagious.


The #LetUsBreathe Collective prioritizes agency and inclusion. In our effort to transform the often transactional nature of philanthropic culture, we invite you to interact with these guidelines in whatever way feels authentic to you. If any of these questions feel inaccessible or you want to do something else, feel free to send us a message. Our commitment to redistributing money to folks will not be impacted by unconventional approaches to responding.


Commissions The #LetUsBreathe Collective will commission digitally-shareable creative content, including but not limited to:

  • Illustrations (collages, paintings, drawings, cartoons, poster designs, graphics, and other visual media)

  • Videos (music, spoken word, storytelling, skill-shares, comedy sketches, meditations, animation, etc)

  • Songs

  • Podcast Episodes

  • Musical Compositions

  • Poems

  • Short Film

  • Short Fiction

  • Short Plays or Monologues

  • Virtual Healing Salons (i.e. 60 minute live reiki or tarot webinar) What else? Pitch us! All submissions should be shareable in a video, audio, image, or text file format. Live content should be hosted at an open link at a time mutually agreed upon by artist and the Collective. d at an open link at a time mutually agreed upon by artist and the Collective.

Submission Guidelines

Proposals can be submitted via Google forms.

  • Emerging and experienced artists, creatives, healers, & humanists are invited to submit proposals for a commissioned response to the COVID-19 pandemic through a social justice lens.

  • We invite content that responds to or provokes thought around how the pandemic intersects with incarceration, criminalization, immigration, labor, health systems, housing, environmental, family, and food justice.

  • We invite content that is shareable in a digital format.

  • We invite content that includes the phrase “I believe in a world…,” the logline for FreeTown 2020, the #LetUsBreathe Collective’s land activation series, outdoor organizing space, and abolitionist mecca, slated to launch May 2020, which will likely be rescheduled due to current events.

  • Content commissioned through this Stimulus Package for Humanity may be used for publicity for FreeTown, in virtual formats this year or in live events in the future. If you decline to give us permission to use your work in this way, it will not impact our decision to redistribute money to you.

  • Creators otherwise retain proprietary rights to their content.

  • Collaborations with up to 5 individual collaborators may be proposed. Please get consent from any potential collaborators before listing them.

  • Proposals will be evaluated and approved on a rolling basis by 4-5 volunteers from the #LetUsBreathe Collective until all funds are exhausted. The sooner you propose, the sooner we approve!

  • Proposals will be evaluated based on need, alignment with themes, and diversity of media (we hope to commission a range of media, rather than a bunch of the same type of thing).

  • Approved proposals will receive a micro-commission of $100. We realize this is modest and we know a bunch of artists have been impacted by the cancelations of their gigs! We want to touch as many people and stimulate as much creative thought and activity as possible, with the limited resources we have.

  • Proposals with multiple collaborators will receive $100 for each individual, up to five.

  • Commission will be paid as soon as your proposal is approved via CashApp or PayPal. If neither of these platforms work for you, let us know and we’ll work with you to find an arrangement that does!

  • We ask that completed projects be shared with us within two weeks from notice of approval, but can be submitted earlier for quicker payout. If you need more time, let us know.


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