Guildhouse is continuing to advocate for artists as the full impact of COVID-19 is realised and we encourage you to stay in touch if you require any further assistance.

You can find all the current information we have around COVID-19 on this page. We will be keeping it updated as new information and resources come to light.

Our response to date

  • The Guildhouse Office is remote, but fully operational to support and service members
  • You can reach us through all the normal channels, plus new video channels to support 1:1 meetings and small group sessions.
  • We continue to honour our commitments to artists who are currently involved in our programs and will continue to do so.
  • Our current call outs are going ahead as planned with the knowledge that some timeframes may need to shift.
  • We remain in close communication with our partner organisations and artists about implications for upcoming programs.
  • We are contributing to national and state advocacy to ensure the impact on the sector is heard. Where possible, we are exploring alternative modes of delivery to ensure our programs continue to be available, including extending existing initiatives.
  • This resources page will be a key repository for essential advice, official reference material and stimulus funding opportunities.

Reputable sources of information

There is a lot of information currently circulating about COVID-19 and how to look after yourself during this crisis. We recommend consulting these official sources to keep informed.


SA Health

Australian Department of Health

World Health Organisation

Smart Traveller (information for Australian travellers)

Australian creative sector unites to secure our cultural life

Guildhouse has joined over fifty of Australia’s leading arts, creative, cultural and entertainment industry bodies to send a clear message to the Prime Minister: act now to ensure that Australia’s cultural life survives COVID-19.

Targeted stimulus to a value of 2% of the $111.7 billion industry is urgently required to save hundreds of thousands of jobs and prevent business closures, so that Australia’s social and cultural life can adapt and survive through COVID-19’s perils.

The industry group’s letter has been sent to the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition, key Government and Opposition Front Benchers, each state and territory minister for the arts or creative industries, and all lord mayors.

“At this most debilitating time in Australia’s cultural life, our creative, cultural and entertainment industries require urgent support to ensure that jobs and infrastructure survive to inspire Australians through this crisis – and well beyond,” the letter says.

“Cultural and creative activity contributes in excess of $110 billion to Australia’s economy each year, employing hundreds of thousands, with a high proportion of sole trader contractors, SMEs and casuals. Our audiences, here and around the world, number in the millions. Every day, we entertain, educate and inspire.

“Our venues and other programs have been closed down by government order, without any industry support.

“Our work relies on gatherings, and national and international touring, both small and large, in remote locations, in regions and in cities. We were the first industry to be hit, with announcements of cancellations and closures making front-page news across the country. And we will be one of the last able to trade again.”

This collective response calls for specific and urgent action for the creative sector.

Funding for South Australian practitioners

On Tuesday 24 March, The Government of South Australia’s Department of the Premier and Cabinet announced a $1.5 million COVID-19 package for our arts sector. What does this mean for you?


  • There are 5 Organisations Collaboration Grants (up to $100,000) available for major arts and cultural organisations, the small-to-medium sector and independent artists to achieve employment outcomes to explore new ways of working together, creating and developing work, and engaging with audiences. Applications close Tuesday 14 April, 5 pm.
    Please note: Independent artists and smaller organisations must be the primary financial beneficiaries of this grant with the major organisation contributing in-kind resources and organisational capacity (such as staff time or facilities).
  • Flexibility – Arts South Australia has been empowered by the SA Government to provide maximum flexibility to the sector including repurposing existing funding agreements, enabling contracts with arts workers to be honoured, providing fast tracked funds and reducing administrative burdens.
  • Mental Health – The South Australian Government has made a $50,000 donation to Support Act, who operate a 24/7 Wellbeing Helpline for Australian arts workers.
City of Adelaide: Arts and Cultural Grants

The City of Adelaide’s Arts and Cultural Grants are currently open for eligible artists and organisations to apply for projects taking place July 2020 – July 2021. Applications close Monday 20 April.

You can apply for grants for:

  • Artistic Development (up to $20,000 over a three-year period, with up to $8,000 made available in any one year)
  • Public Art (up to $8,000)
  • Community Programs and Events (up to $8,000)
  • Live Music Enterprise (up to $5,000)

They are also welcoming Quick Response and Cultural Promotion grants applications of up to $2,000 to help you make and promote innovative content to enable Adelaide’s communities to connect to creative pursuits in alternative formats given the current requirements for social distancing.

For all enquiries please contact Natali Rojas Palacio, Arts and Cultural Development Coordinator, on 0466946512 or

Update from Australia Council for the Arts

The Australia Council has announced its first Response Package to support artists, arts practitioners, arts groups and arts organisations coping with the impact of COVID-19.

This includes proceeding with Four Year Funding, suspending upcoming investment programs and introducing new programs. More information available here.

On 31 March, the Australia Council released an update initiating a new Resilience Fund and reopening applications to their Arts and Disability Mentoring Initiative.
  • The 2020 Resilience Fund (approximately $5M) includes three streams:
    Survive – small grants for individuals and groups (up to $2,0000) and organisations (up to $5,000) to offset or recoup financial losses due to cancelled activity.
    Adaptgrants for individuals and groups (up to $10,000) and organisations (up to $20,000) to adapt their practice and explore new operating models.
    Creategrants for individuals and groups (up to $10,000) and organisations (up to $20,000) to continue to create artistic work and develop creative responses in a time of disruption.
    Applications are now open and there are no closing dates for these programs. You will be notified of the outcome and, if successful, you will receive funding within six weeks of submitting your application.
  • Applications to the Arts and Disability Mentoring Initiative (6 x $30,000) have been reopened. If you are an individual artist or arts worker with disability, these grants can provide support to extend your arts practice, networks, skills and ambition. The new closing date is Tuesday 14 April, midnight (AEST).

Are you facing financial hardship?

On Sunday 22 March, the Australian Government announced a second $66 billion economic stimulus package. But you may be asking, what does this mean for me?


  • Over the next six months, the Government is temporarily expanding eligibility to income support payments and establishing a new, temporary COVID-19 supplement to be paid at a rate of $550 per fortnight. This will be paid to both existing and new recipients of JobSeeker Payment, Youth Allowance Jobseeker, Parenting Payment, Farm Household Allowance and Special Benefit. Affected sole traders, casuals, freelancers and contractors can apply here.
  • A loan guarantee scheme has also been implemented to support small to medium-sized businesses. It is free to access and will be repayment-free for six months.
  • The Government is providing tax-free payments between $20,000 and $100,000 to eligible small to medium businesses and not-for-profits that employ people. These payments will help with cash flow so businesses can keep operating, pay bills and retain staff. Payment will be delivered by the ATO as an automatic credit in the activity statement system from 28 April 2020. Businesses can find out more here.
  • You are now able to draw on your superannuation and access up to $10,000 of your super if you need it. However, we recommend you use this as a last resort since for many artists and arts workers there may not be much to draw from. If you’re in a position to do so, we recommend preserving your super so you have access to it when you need it, during your retirement.
On Monday 30 March, the Australian Government announced that they would be providing a $130 billion JobKeeper wage subsidy to support employers and employees. What does this mean for you?


  • Sole traders, full time and part-time employees (including those who have been stood down) as well as casuals (who have been with their employer for the previous 12 months) are covered by this scheme, as outlined in the Prime Minister’s media release.
  • JobKeeper payments of a flat $1,500 before tax per fortnight will be made via the ATO to employers to pass onto their employees. The funds will be available in May, and backdated to 30 March, to protect anyone who’s lost their job as of 1 March or works as a sole traders/casual.
  • The Centrelink partner income threshold will rise to $79,000, which will make a lot more people eligible for income support payments.

This package responds directly to priorities outlined by industry and worker groups all over Australia, including last Friday’s creative industry letter. It requires legislation to be enacted by the Australian Parliament so in the absence of details at this early stage, the ATO has set up a page for employers and sole traders to register for updates about the scheme.

Further resources
  • The Australian Banking Association has information that may assist if you are experiencing financial hardship.
  • Further details about the Federal Government’s support measures for can be found at the Australian Taxation Office website.
  • The Australian Government has set up a Jobs Hub to supporting businesses and those Australians looking for work. You can find advertised vacancies in the health and care sectors, transport and logistics, some areas of retail, mining and mining services, manufacturing, agriculture and government sectors, among others.
Other funding opportunities
  • The AMP Tomorrow Fund awards up to $1 million in grants each year to amazing Australians doing great things in their communities. The grants can be used for a range of activities, including travel, equipment, study costs, research and more.
IF Loan

Guildhouse offers interest free IF Loans from $1,000 to $5,000 to members working in any artform and at all career stages.

The loan can be used for almost any creative endeavour from design and production, to exhibition costs, equipment or materials purchase, research development, marketing and promotion costs through to grant top-ups or gap funding.

Make sense of your finances

Are you trying to make sense of the Australian Government stimulus offerings? Is there such a thing as ‘too small’ in the small business stimulus?

If you are figuring out your next steps financially amid the COVID-19 pandemic, both the short and long term impact on your practice, In Real Terms with The Real Thiel is the webinar for you.

Experienced Chartered Accountant Lauren Thiel (The Real Thiel) specialises in working with creatives and has been hosting free webinars to support the Guildhouse community through these difficult times.

If you are interested in participating in a webinar with Lauren, please get in touch and let us know via phone on 8410 1822 or email us at

Please note: To facilitate a conversational tone and participant interaction, places are limited to under 10 participants in each session.

Lauren has been sharing advice around COVID-19, including financial advice unpacking the latest government initiatives, on her blog. We recommend hopping over for some clear, concise tips.

Have your say

Now is the time for action! The Government needs to hear from creative practitioners and arts workers about the impact of COVID-19.
  • Share the impact of COVID-19 on your practice and the sector more broadly through this online survey developed by NAVA.
  • Contact Australian Government’s Treasurer, Josh Frydenberg, and/or your local MP. NAVA has compiled a sample letter and plenty of tips on how to adapt it across different platforms. You can also find a list of industry information on COVID-19 impacts, statistics and specific stimulus priorities. Please use what you need to support your message using this Advocacy Toolkit.
  • Take to social media. Tag your posts using #DontCancelCreativity and #supportartists however you can.

Your Guildhouse insurance policy

If you are an Accredited or Allied member of Guildhouse, you may be wondering what your insurance policy covers.

The insurance policy attached to Guildhouse membership is a public liability and personal accident policy.

The personal accident component does not cover you for illness, including COVID-19. The policy relates to any accident that prevents you from working on your practice.

You can find out more about your insurance policy using our insurance fact sheets:

Guildhouse Accredited Member Insurance Fact Sheet

Guildhouse Allied Member Insurance Fact Sheet

Take care of yourself and your community

At this difficult time, please know that help is near.
  • The Australian Psychological Society has put together some useful strategies which can help both adults and children cope with the stress or anxiety experienced as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
  • Call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or text the helpline on 0477 13 11 14.
  • Beyond Blue can be reached on 1300 224 636 and has a comprehensive list of national helplines and websites that you can use.
  • For the National Sexual Assault, Domestic Family Violence Counselling Service call 1800RESPECT for their confidential information, counselling and support services.
  • The Zahra Foundation is available to assist South Australian women and children affected by domestic and family violence, empowering them and providing pathways towards economic independence.