CARES Act - Virtual Programming Grant

Virtual Programming for Distance Learning

Massachusetts continues to be hard hit by COVID-19. Virtual Programming for Distance Learning will remain a valuable way to provide services during these times.

Libraries may use Virtual Programming for Distance Learning grants to support increased public access to library virtual programs. Programming for all ages should be considered. Libraries are strongly encouraged to work with local museums and local cultural institutions to enhance virtual programming.

Funds may be used for:

  • Equipment such as tripods, green screens, recording equipment, access to software or online subscriptions to create videos, audio recordings, print and digital materials (canva, stopmotion apps, screencast services, trivia and other remote resources, etc.) [Funds may be used to purchase computers/laptops, tablets, and WI-FI hotspots if a library can certify that it complies with the Children’s Internet Protection Action (CIPA),  or will undertake actions to come into compliance within one year. For more information on CIPA, please contact Paul Kissman.]
  • Virtual performers may be paid with grant funds. Must be educational in nature, not entertainment
  • Materials for developing remote learning kits (for example) that can be distributed to patrons for curbside pickup or at locations outside the library, such as grocery stores, school meal sites, little free libraries, post offices. Books purchased with funds must be circulating or for in-house use. Funds may not be used to purchase prizes, rewards, or swag.
  • Supplies may be purchased for storywalks and virtual storytimes (for example) things like books, felt board, puppets.

If these sessions are recorded, they will be uploaded to the statewide video library.  All virtual events will be included in the statewide calendar to help increase awareness and participation.


$1500 - $3500


Any library that is a member of MLS can apply. Public libraries must be certified in state aid. Round one recipients of these grants are not eligible for round two.


Round Two:

  • Application opens - December 28, 2020
  • Applications due - January 15, 2021


Round Two is closed.

Applications for the second round are due January 15, 2021. Applicants will be notified in February 2021. Libraries should plan projects to take place between March - September 2021 with some flexibility in the starting date. Grant funds can only pay for costs incurred after a signed contract. We cannot reimburse for earlier expenses. All funds must be expended by September 30, 2021. 

Application Help

Contact Lyndsay Forbes for assistance or questions.

Manage Your Grant