The COVID-19 pandemic has brought social and cultural life to an unprecedented global standstill. While all levels of society are affected by this crisis, a high number of independent cultural practitioners find themselves in a financially precarious situation. As culture continues to be an essential part of our lives, we would like to encourage artists of all disciplines to respond to our call for submissions by sending us projects which are accessible to audiences despite the current challenges of social distancing. We accept new initiatives as well as projects which have already been implemented and are ongoing. With the call for submissions Close from Afar, the Swiss Cultural Fund (SCF) seeks to support innovative ways of producing art and bringing culture to people in times of restricted mobility. We aim to give a maximum of six one-off grants of £1000 to projects and formats that find creative ways of responding to the restrictions we are currently confronted with.

It is our Fund’s mission to bring the work of Swiss and/or Swiss-based cultural practitioners to British audiences and by doing so, to contribute to intercultural dialogue between Switzerland and the United Kingdom. While free movement of people between the two nations is currently restricted, we nevertheless aim for cultural projects to cross the channel and find audiences in the United Kingdom. The SCF and the Embassy of Switzerland in the United Kingdom will help to promote selected projects to audiences in the United Kingdom via the Connec+ newsletter, the SCF website, social media channels and the Fund’s annual publication.

While the long-term consequences of this crisis for the cultural sector are not yet clear, we are forced to reconsider our understanding of what a cultural gathering or intervention could look like and how this could be brought to audiences and participants. New Connections – Close from Afar seeks to connect the UK and Switzerland but potentially also numerous other cultures and individuals by supporting projects that contribute to the aim stated above.

We will assess applications in accordance with our usual criteria, taking into account reasonable limitations resulting from the current COVID-19 situation where possible and appropriate.

To read more about the guidelines for this call and to access the application form, please click on the link below.


For more information, please contact us via

The deadline for this call is Sunday, 31 May 2020.

Applicants will be contacted within three weeks of the deadline.