New city scheme to improve access to small arts grants

Published Monday, 09 November 2020

Almost £72,000 is being made available as part of a small grants scheme to support cultural activities in Coventry that are less likely to participate in the arts.

The funding for arts project is being set up as part of a bidding process and funding rounds will run every six months for the next two years. Each round will offer similar grants of between £5,000 and £12,000 to applicants amounting to £72,000.

In total £375,000 is earmarked for funding small arts projects over the next two years until Autumn 2022.

It’s hoped the funding scheme will further support activities during City of Culture 2021 and up until the Commonwealth Games in 2023.

Cllr David Welsh, Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, said: “We plan to issue four call outs for funding every six months because it is especially important to help the sector during these difficult times.

“All funded activities need to demonstrate that they can operate a Covid safe approach.

“We will be getting in touch with the successful projects for this first round and will be following it up with the next bidding process opening in January 2021.

“This enables the Council to use its limited funds to leverage funds in other resources including those from the Arts Council lottery projects fund, from trusts and foundations, from earned income and sponsorship.

“We’ve been pleased, and not surprised, by the level of interest so far.”

Project grants are offered for activities which enable those groups furthest from cultural activities to participate.

The Council is supporting small arts grants so that cultural organisations can continue to deliver activities over the next two years and beyond.

Eight grants have been awarded in this round and the successful projects are being notified next week for activities happening up until March 2021.

Eight grants have been awarded in this round. The organisations to which funding is being awarded are Grain Project CIC, Highly Sprung, Imagineers, Koco Community Centre, Open Theatre, Photographic Archive Miners CIC, Stamp Theatre and Wriggle Dance for activities happening up until March 2021.

Requests were accepted between £5,000 and £12,000 with partnership funding of 20 per cent required. Activities proposed had to be primarily for the public participation in arts, and must be delivered by professional artists.

Support for third party arts organisations through grant funding is the primary way in which the Council develops cultural activities in the city. This includes revenue funding against the core costs of the most established cultural assets and grants for discrete activities

To be eligible for funding, applicants have to be constituted not-for-profit arts organisations. Advice on applying for future funding will be available from [email protected]

In assessing the applications, priority was given to projects actively working with groups which are least engaged in cultural activity ie people with disabilities (a corporate Equality Objective), people from minority ethnic backgrounds and residents from the ten least engaged city wards. These wards were identified through the Coventry Cultural Place Profiler which used data from the Household Survey 2018, combined with ticketing data.


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