With the COVID-19 pandemic forcing local artists to cancel work for the foreseeable future, the Arts Foundation of Cape Cod (AFCC) is stepping up to assist them by launching the Cape Cod Arts Relief Fund.
“Our creative community is potentially facing devastating impacts as a result of the economic fallout from this pandemic. This fund will address that urgent need,” said AFCC Executive Director Julie Wake. “As the Cape’s regional arts nonprofit, we have an obligation to ensure that these impacts are minimized so our local artists can continue making art when this is over.”
Applications are now available at www.artsfoundation.org. One-time relief funds of up to $500 per individual artist will be distributed beginning in late April. Applicants must be artists who live, work, create, and/or perform on Cape Cod and have been financially impacted as a result of the pandemic.
The AFCC has already raised more than $10,000 for the fund and has set a fundraising goal of another $20,000 by May 1st. Funders include artist and teacher Pete Hocking of Provincetown, Terrence Meck and The Palette Fund, RogersGray, and the AFCC Board of Directors.
A second phase of this effort will focus on cultural nonprofits and ways the AFCC can support them once the pandemic is over.
“We’re working to build a stronger, more robust grant bucket where we can provide general operating support in the fall,” Wake said. “Between now and then, we’re working closely with local arts organizations on what life will look like post-pandemic and how we can help with everything from general operating budgets to bolstering virtual programming to creating more access to the arts for everyone.”
AFCC Board Chair Kathryn Kayajan highlighted the importance of the arts as a major economic driver to our region.
“The arts create jobs, attract tourists, and draw much-needed revenue to the Cape’s year-round economy,” she said. “Now is the time to support our artists who bring us so much joy, not just during good times, but difficult ones like we’re currently facing. We also need to stand by our cultural nonprofits and their employees who bring us world-class exhibits, plays, concerts, poetry readings, lectures, and more that inspire us, enrich our lives, and give it meaning.”
The AFCC is seeking business partners as well as donors to meet its fundraising goal in order to help as many artists and nonprofits as possible. Those interested in donating should contact Julie Wake at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Over the next few weeks, the AFCC will be engaging local and regional artists to host virtual performances on social media to raise awareness and donations to the relief fund. Anyone interested in hosting a virtual fundraiser should contact Julie Wake.
“We are one community, and that’s how we’ll get through this,” said Wake. “This is a time to come together and support those who need it most. The future of Cape Cod’s cultural landscape depends on it.”