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May 10, 2016 Update


Funding Model:

The BC Arts Council has developed a new Four-Stream Funding Model to describe the categories of its funding support. The model includes Professional Arts, Community Arts, Strategic Initiatives, and Partnerships. The BC Arts Council is committed to continuing a process of review to ensure that funding streams and programs meet the needs of the province’s arts and culture sector. Please see the Backgrounder for additional information.

Program Change:

NEW Enhanced Capacity
Beginning in the fall of 2016, organizations receiving Operating Assistance will be able to apply for new Enhanced Capacity support, concurrent with their extended cycle intake application. This funding is intended to help organizations build capacity and respond to strategic priorities, challenges and opportunities and will offer enhanced support for operations for the duration of the funding cycle. This approach allows flexibility in response to organizations’ fluctuations in cycles of activity or capacity needs, while still providing stable, base operating support.

NEW Interim Special Project Assistance Program
Prior to transitioning to the Enhanced Capacity approach over the next two years, the BC Arts Council is offering an Interim Special Project Assistance Program. Eligibility for the program will follow the same guidelines as previous Capacity & Sustainability and Innovations programs. There will be one intake only and submission deadline is July 4, 2016. The maximum award available is $30,000. Guidelines and application form will be available four to six weeks before the application deadline. A permanent program to support Strategic Opportunities for project funding applicants will be launched in 2017.

August 12, 2015 Update

In 2014/15 the BC Arts Council engaged in a program review to re-assess how to deliver funding more effectively and efficiently, while responding to the emerging realities of arts organizations across the province. This was the first time in Council’s history that a comprehensive review has taken place.

The structure of the review was designed to be iterative, flexible and open-ended. As such, although the consultation and recommendation periods from the initial phase are complete, implementation and further review will continue to take place.

Through the consultation process, we developed the following high level recommendations, to be implemented over the next three years:

1) Simplify and Define Funding Streams
2) Streamline Operating Assistance Programs
3) Realign Operating Assistance and strategic funding programs
4) Simplify and Restructure Delivery of Professional Arts Funding for Artists and Organizations

Some recommendations are already being implemented, such as the introduction of the Streamlined Operating Assistance Program, with extended funding cycles, starting in 2015/16. Further detail on the recommendations from this phase of the review, as well as next steps, will be available in Fall 2015

December 1, 2014 Update

Throughout the month of October, BC Arts Council staff held 13 community consultation sessions in 12 B.C. communities: Prince Rupert, Smithers, Prince George, Courtenay, Kelowna, Kamloops, Cranbrook, Nelson, Surrey, Chilliwack, Victoria and Vancouver.

The meetings were open to all interested stakeholders. Attendees were encouraged to read the program review discussion document in advance of the meeting so that they could come prepared to discuss the specific implications of the current program review, focusing on Capacity and Sustainability, Innovations and Operating Assistance programs.

Through this process, BC Arts Council staff have heard important feedback from artists and arts organizations about the needs of their communities in relation to the programs under review concerning:

  • Regional considerations
  • Opportunities for collaboration and exchange across province
  • Relationship between program assessment criteria, particularly Artistic Achievement and Community Engagement
  • Balancing increased access to funding programs with strategic priorities and limited resources
  • Interplay between community and professional mandates
  • Range of capacities within organizations
  • The importance of Operating Assistance: “keeps the lights on”
  • Mechanics of streamlining for Operating Assistance
  • Relationship of Special Projects to core funding programs
  • Needs of Aboriginal artists and arts organizations

The updated staff presentation from the community consultations is available here .

Initial results from the program review process are expected to be available in early 2015.

November 10, 2014

The online feedback form is no longer available. If you have any questions, please contact Allison Bottomley at allison.bottomley@gov.bc.ca.

October 17, 2014

Community Consultations underway

Since October 6, BC Arts Council staff have hosted community meetings in Prince Rupert, Smithers, Prince George and Courtenay, where we have heard important feedback from artists and arts organizations about the needs of their communities in relation to the programs under review.

From October 20-24, we will be hosting meetings in Kelowna, Kamloops, Cranbrook and Nelson. Meetings in Victoria and the Lower Mainland will take place the week of October 27. Please see the updated itinerary and information below for details.

Vancouver meetings scheduled

The BC Arts Council will be conducting two community consultation sessions in Vancouver in conjunction with our current program review.

  • Oct. 28 - 3:30-5:30 pm at the Native Education Centre (285 East 5th Ave.)
  • Oct. 30 - 9:30-11:30 am at The O’Brian Centre for Vancouver Opera (1945 McLean Dr.)

These meetings are open to all interested stakeholders, however, capacity is limited. Attendees are encouraged to read the program review discussion document in advance of the meeting and should come prepared to discuss the specific implications of the current program review, focusing on Capacity and Sustainability, Innovations and Operating Assistance programs.

In order to attend one of these sessions, please rsvp to sheryl.jones@gov.bc.ca to register, indicating the meeting you wish to attend. Space is extremely limited. You will receive confirmation of attendance.

Meetings are also being held in Surrey and Chilliwack on October 29; if convenient, attendees from the region are encouraged to consider attending in those communities in order to balance the demand and limited capacity for the Vancouver sessions.

  • Surrey - 10am-noon at the Surrey Arts Centre (13740 88 Ave.)
  • Chilliwack - 2-4pm at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre (9201 Corbould St.)

If you are unable to attend one of our community meetings in person, or have more to say, you have until November 10 to complete the online feedback form; please send us your comments - your voice and opinion are valued.

September 12, 2014

Important Update Regarding BC Arts Council Programs

Program Review and Upcoming Community Consultation Activities

The BC Arts Council is conducting a review of Special Project programs (Capacity & Sustainability and Innovations) and Operating Assistance programs to address the changing needs of the arts sector in B.C.

The review incorporates engagement and consultations with artists and arts organizations, the Council’s advisory committees and juries, other funding bodies, arts and cultural communities, and stakeholders. Public meetings will be taking place in several B.C. communities, and an online feedback questionnaire will be available through this web site on September 30.

A discussion document has been created to provide background and context as the review process enters the next phase of community consultation. In addition, the BC Arts Council Strategic Plan: 2014-2018 was released earlier this year. It serves to guide the development of policy and program priorities as Council strives to support the creative and innovative capacity of the arts and cultural community and represent the interests of the creative sector.

Please see the itinerary of proposed Community Consultations for the list of meetings taking place this fall.

BC Arts Council is grateful for your interest and welcomes your participation in the program review process.