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States announce new Covid-19 arts funding

Arts funding bodies in Victoria and New South Wales have announced new funding initiatives for the creative sector in response to Covid-19.

Victoria: $16.8 million ‘survival package’, including $2.2 million Sustaining Creative Workers Fund

In Victoria, a new $2.2 million Sustaining Creative Workers fund will offer quick-response grants to support the work of Victorian creative practitioners impacted by Covid-19.

The fund will be open to ‘professional independent creative practitioners, sole traders, freelancers, collectives and micro-organisations/businesses’, including those working in the literary sector, whose work and livelihoods have been negatively impacted.

Grants of $5000 will be available for individuals and $10,000 for micro-organisations/businesses (those that employ fewer than five ‘full-time equivalent staff’). Additionally, $2500 in access funding will be available for creatives with a disability, and disability-led organisations.

Applicants must have ‘at least five years of professional experience’, with the exception of ‘Deaf and Disabled creatives/artists and arts workers or disability-led micro organisations/businesses’, who are eligible ‘at all career stages’.

Applications for the funding open on 30 April and applicants can apply at any time up to 1 June 2020 ‘or until the funding pool is exhausted’.

The fund will be delivered by Creative Victoria in partnership with Regional Arts Victoria and Arts Access Victoria.

The initiative is part of a wider $16.8 million ‘survival package’ announced by the Victorian state government to provide ‘immediate support to Victorian creative organisations and individuals to sustain employment, develop new works and provide opportunities for creative community participation’.

In addition to the Sustaining Creative Workers fund, the package includes a $13 million Strategic Investment Fund to be shared by ‘almost 100 non-government arts and cultural organisations’ including La Mama Theatre, Heide Museum of Modern Art, the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Clunes Booktown Festival, Ilbijerri Theatre and Kaiela Arts.

The remaining portion of the ‘survival package’ (approximately $1.6 million) will be invested over the next three weeks through the VicArts Grants, Music Works, and Innovation in Marketing programs.

Create NSW announces $1.68 million in new funding, joint Covid-19 research project

Create NSW has announced new funding initiatives and the repurposing of existing funding totalling $6.34 million to support independent artists and small to medium arts organisations. New initiatives and increased funding make up approximately $1.68 million of this total.

Key initiatives include six new fellowship opportunities, valued at $30,000 each, to be offered for individual artists and groups to experience digital residency programs, professional virtual placements and professional development provided by NSW organisations including the State Library of NSW and Byron Writers’ Festival; over $1 million for accommodation assistance through a six-month rent and outgoings waiver that will support 38 arts organisations housed across the Create NSW arts property portfolio of buildings; $450,000 for a new Covid-19 Support Round, a new arts funding program specifically targeted at those impacted by Covid-19; and a $350,000 funding increase to Small Project Grants.

To see the full range of support measures, visit the Create NSW website.

Create NSW has also partnered with the Australia Council, other state funding bodies and independent research consultants Patternmakers and WolfBrown to fund a research project investigating impacts of Covid-19 on the arts and cultural sectors. The Covid-19 arts attendance impact study will track sentiments and behaviours around engaging with the arts amid the pandemic crisis. According to Create NSW, ‘Regular release of results will observe changes as they occur and support the sector’s recovery from this crisis.’


Category: Local news