At least one Vancouver organization will be directly benefiting from the several million dollars in pandemic relief coming for arts and culture organizations.
As announced in a recent press release, the B.C. government will be providing a total of $4.3 million in grants to 189 artists and organizations in the Lower Mainland. The money comes as the province recognizes arts organizations have been faced with temporary closures of venues and restricted audience sizes, but have soldiered on.
“People in the arts have used their ingenuity to find new ways to keep creating despite the pandemic,” said Melanie Mark, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport. “Artists are so vital to our social and cultural fabric. These grants are empowering artists and organizations throughout B.C. to adapt their platforms so they can continue inspiring us.”
The Health Arts Society in Vancouver is one such organization to benefit from the grants having received funds to move their Concerts in Care from in-person to digital, so seniors could still enjoy the work of B.C.’s professional musicians.
“Our audiences are seniors living in care - the demographic most gravely affected by the pandemic,” said Raymond Aucoin, managing director of Health Arts Society. “The current isolation underscores the importance of maintaining a conduit between our elders and the performance community. It has been vital to pivot concert delivery to reach our audience online.”
These grants to support arts and culture organizations’ recovery are made possible in part through $5.3 million from StrongerBC: BC’s Economic Recovery Plan. The BC Arts Council administered the grants, which are now fully distributed. More than 135 artists and 155 organizations throughout B.C. have received a total of $6.6 million to support their adaptations.