A total of $1.5 million Covid-19 relief grants were given to 30 Midwestern arts and culture organisations through the United States Regional Arts Resilience Fund.
According to the announcement from the US non-profit regional arts organisation Arts Midwest last week, each of the 30 organisations will receive between $50,000 and $55,000, after a gift from an anonymous donor to the Fund.
The United States Regional Arts Resilience Fund began in June 2020 after the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation allocated portions of a $10 million emergency grant to each of America’s six Regional Arts Organisations.
Arts Midwest’s philanthropic investment model is equity-focused and trust-based and, according to the announcement on their website, rural communities, Indigenous communities, and communities of colour were integral voices in the funding process.
With the goal of investing in ‘historically under-resourced arts and culture organisations across the United States as they work to weather the Covid-19 pandemic’, 22 of the funded organisations are led by and serving people of colour and/or Indigenous communities, and 11 are based in rural areas.
According to Arts Midwest’s announcement, the Regional Arts Resilience Fund will continue to support organisations across the Midwest beyond this first wave of funding.
“These organisations play a critical role in the civic and economic vitality of our communities and are core to our quality of life in the Midwest,” said president and CEO of Arts Midwest, Torrie Allen, in a statement for the announcement.
In the meantime, the recovery of the arts sector in Ireland may take until 2025 if nothing is done to mitigate the impacts of Covid-19, revealed a report from Expert Advisory Group to the Arts Council this summer.
The Music & Entertainment Association (MEAI) Ireland posted on Facebook this week:
“While we still await working opportunities for larger groups and productions, we will still be fighting for increased financial support across our sector in providing performing opportunities and reinstatement of the PUP at €350 for those unable to return to work.”
Even Eurovision winner Niamh Kavanagh has resorted to working as at Tesco helps to meet the bills, as she recently shared with The Irish Times.
On the bright side, the Government has previously allocated funding for the Arts sector as extra supports, with the most recent being the €6 million Live Performance and Music Industry Support Packages which were announced by Minister Martin yesterday.