City of Vancouver allots funds for new grants program to support emerging artists

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      Budding artists in Vancouver have something to look forward to in 2016.

      City council on Tuesday (December 15) voted unanimously to carry out a pilot program in 2016 to support new artists through small grants.

      The Independent Arts and Culture Fund will have an allocation of $52,000 from the city, and will be administered by a group called ArtStarts in Schools.

      The city partnered with the Vancouver-based nonprofit dedicated to promoting art among young people and supporting artists in B.C. because the Vancouver Charter allows the city to provide grants only to registered societies, service co-ops, and charities.

      “As a result, the City does not provide grants directly to individuals or unincorporated organizations,” according to a staff report.

      The report explained that the program will build the “capacity and confidence of emerging artists”.

      “Investing in the creative economy through innovative partnerships is a key strategic direction in Vancouver’s Culture Plan,” the report stated. “Supporting the new partnership initiative with ArtStarts in Schools will expand civic grant support to emerging, innovative artistic practices, create new strategic opportunities for young people to begin a life-long engagement in the arts, and improve access to civic cultural grant funds for individual artists, who are currently underserved by the existing cultural grants framework.”

      Council voted on January 20 this year to develop a $50,000 yearly program to support new local artists.

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