People throughout British Columbia are experiencing the power of art and culture through projects that received funding from the Community Resilience Through Arts and Culture program.
“Arts and culture help lift people up, especially during times of adversity. They are an essential part of our identity and fuel a spirit of resiliency,” said Lisa Beare, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture. “Through these grants, we are working to make life better by supporting projects that harness the power of arts and culture to build healthy, connected communities.”
The program supports arts and culture events, festivals and initiatives led by groups in communities that are experiencing hardship, historic oppression or other challenges. Funding is also focused on cultural revitalization within Indigenous communities, with more than 80% of grants going to projects centred on Indigenous culture, supporting government’s commitment to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
In this second round of funding, the program supported 83 projects in 68 communities in 2018-19. Grants ranged from $2,500 to $15,000.
Examples of projects receiving grants include:
- The Mother's Day Traditional Powwow: a free, inclusive community event, which brought together artists, dancers, drummers, Elders, and Knowledge Keepers for a three-day celebration of Indigenous cultures, families, women, and life-givers. (Britannia Community Services Society, Vancouver)
- Burns Lake Band Commemorative Totem Pole: a project reflecting the revitalization of culture, heritage and spiritual practice. Burns Lake Band will carve and erect a commemorative totem pole to recognize the strength and resilience of its ancestral traditions and culture. (Burns Lake Band, Burns Lake)
- Bent On Art: Kootenay Queer & Trans Art Festival: a series of events designed to promote the work of LGBTQ2S+ artists in the Kootenays, while creating educational opportunities, fostering community connection and promoting resilience through the arts. (West Kootenay Regional Arts Council, Nelson)
- The Tseptekwll Artist Book: a project to engage the community in the arts by creating a collaborative book to hold traditional stories and artwork for generations to come. (Esk’etemc First Nation, Alkali Lake)
- Community Resilience Through Arts and Culture grants support the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples regarding the rights of Indigenous peoples to maintain, control, protect and develop their cultural heritage, traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions.
- In 2017-18, 61 grants were awarded in 55 communities.
- Nearly 30,000 British Columbians in small communities around the province participated in events and programs resulting from the funding in 2017-18.
For more information and a list of funded projects, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/sports-culture/arts-culture/arts-and-culture-initiatives/community-resilience