A guide to developing your COVID-19 contingency plan

This guide will help support artists and arts organisations to develop a COVID-19 Contingency Plan. This plan is a requirement for all applications and must be submitted as an attachment with your application.

If you already have a COVID-19 contingency plan, please ensure that it includes all the required information from this guide.

There is some information that you must provide as part of your plan (listed below), however, you can add additional information and provide the plan in any format you choose. See our resources below for a basic Excel template you can use to create your plan. Refer to our guidance of how to format your support material

We will continue to comply with government advisories, including COVID-19 Protection Framework (traffic light settings) and/or border controls. For this reason, when making funding decisions, we may decline a programme or project if it is not viable at the time of notification, regardless of when the project is planned to take place.

Your COVID-19 contingency plan needs to demonstrate how you will undertake or adapt your project under all COVID-19 traffic light settings.

We acknowledge that COVID-19 presents a risk to some types of projects - we need to be confident that you have considered the impact of changing traffic light settings as part of your project planning and have mitigations in place to address these risks.

Risk Management

We see good risk management as:

  • Risk analysis: Identify potential risks to the project and prioritise them.
  • Evaluate and assess each potential risk to identify:
    • Consequence: What are the outcomes if this happens?
    • Impact: How will this affect your project delivery? Will there be additional costs or budget reallocations required?
    • Probability: how likely is it that this will occur?
  • Assign roles and responsibilities to each risk: Who will be responsible for managing this? Who are the decision makers and when will decisions need to be made? For example, when will the decision to adapt, postpone or cancel the project be made? How is this decision communicated? 
  • Capture the actions you will proactively take to minimise the likelihood of these potential risks happening.
  • Create a contingency plan in case traffic light settings change.
  • Set dates to monitor each potential risk as part of your project planning.

What should your contingency plan include?

Your plan will need the following sections (incorporating the information outlined above):

  • What is the potential impact of each traffic light setting on your project? For example, do you need people to be able to gather in the same physical space to create or present your work or do you need access to materials, sites or venues that may be restricted under certain traffic light settings?
  • How might that impact be mitigated, and how could your project adapt to allow for the traffic light setting? For example, could your project be delivered online instead of in-person, or could you defer a live presentation until another date?

What time period should your plan cover?

Your plan should cover the full length of your proposed project, including any planning and preparation time, as well as any delivery phase in the period you are seeking funding for.  

Keeping Creative New Zealand informed

If your project is impacted by COVID-19, whether through a traffic light setting change, or for some other reason, you can refer to your contingency plan and implement the mitigations. If your funded project has been significantly impacted by COVID-19, please refer to our website for scenarios to help you manage this change. It’s important that you let us know about any changes to your original project plan. Email the Funding Services team


Some resources to help you create your plan: