Emergency Readiness, Response, and Recovery

While artists and arts organizations often play an active role in the healing process after disasters, the frequency of 21st century emergencies has also demonstrated that the arts and culture sector itself is highly vulnerable. Time and time again, creative careers and creative economies have suffered great loss and devastation, which has often included severe damage of unique cultural artifacts and venues. Cultural workers and arts organizations are generally underprepared for emergencies, and underserved when disasters strike.

National Coalition for Arts’ Preparedness and Emergency Response

The Coalition is a cross-disciplinary, voluntary task force involving over 20 arts organizations (artist/art-focused organizations, arts agencies and arts funders) and individual artists, co-chaired by CERF+ (Craft Emergency Relief Fund + Artists’ Emergency Resources) and South Arts. Coalition participants are committed to a combined strategy of resource development, educational empowerment, and public policy advocacy designed to ensure that there is an organized, nationwide safety net for artists and the arts organizations that serve them before, during and after disasters. Grantmakers in the Arts (GIA) members active with the Coalition have been meeting at GIA’s annual conference to guide and educate foundations, arts agencies, art service organizations and corporate grantmakers interested in becoming more emergency ready and effective in their emergency relief efforts and grantmaking. Click here for the executive summary of the Coalition’s 2014-2020 plan.

Recommended Resources & Publications

If you are currently working in an area affected by an emergency, the Coalition’s Essential Guidelines for Arts Responders is your first step.

The GIA library includes a number of resources addressing emergency readiness and emergency response and recovery, policy and planning documents, reports from funders about their experiences addressing disasters, and links to a number of helpful websites.

Posted on August 8, 2017 by Monica

The U.S. Department of Arts and Culture has released a guide to arts-based work responding to disasters or other community-wide emergencies. The guide is intended for artists, emergency management agencies, funders, policy-makers, and communities responding to natural and civil emergencies with the intent to help communities organize and respond with care, compassion, and impact.

Read Art Became the Oxygen: A Guide to Artistic Response.

Posted on October 11, 2016 by Monica

From The Advocate:

The Arts Council of Greater Baton Rouge is offering Creative Relief grants to professional artists and nonprofit arts and culture organizations that were adversely affected by the flood.

Individuals and organizations with a history of arts programming whose sites, materials, equipment or collections were damaged in the recent flooding may apply.

Read the full article.

Posted on October 6, 2016 by Monica

South Arts has published a list of resources for artists and arts venues in preparation for Hurricane Matthew in the southeastern United States. Resources include AgilityRecovery’s hurricane readiness checklist, the CERF+ Studio Protector online guide, and resources from FEMA and American Red Cross.

Read more

Posted on June 7, 2016 by Monica

National Endowment for the Arts has released a summary of proceedings from a convening entitled “Readiness and Resiliency: Advancing a Collaborative and National Strategy for the Arts in Times of Emergencies” held on April 19, 2016 in Washington, DC. The NEA convened a cross-sector panel of experts working in the arena of arts and emergency readiness to outline strategies to advance the work.

Read the report.

Posted on October 8, 2015 by SuJ'n

The National Coalition for Arts Preparedness and Emergency Response has recently updated the Essential Guidelines for Arts Responders Organizing in the Aftermath of Disaster: How to Help and Support your Local Artists, Arts-related Small Businesses, and Arts Organizations. This is a primer for state and local arts councils, arts service organizations, community foundations, and other non-profit groups to effectively assist artists and arts organizations impacted by Hurricane Joaquin and other disasters across the country.

For additional resources on arts recovery and response, please visit ArtsReady's website.

Posted on September 18, 2015 by Steve

Wildfires have devastated various parts of California in recent days, and artists and arts communities are among those affected. The California Arts Council has assembled some information that may be useful to those impacted, as well as others who would like to help and need guidance as to how. Many useful resources are also available in the Emergency Readiness, Response, and Recovery group on the GIA website.

Posted on May 29, 2015 by Steve

Record rainfalls, flooding and tornadoes continue to plague the country’s mid-section. And your GIA peers who are involved in the National Coalition for Arts Preparedness and Emergency Response are offering expertise and assistance to artists and cultural organizations affected by the extreme weather.

Theresa Scanlan of American for the Arts has been in touch many of the local arts agencies in Texas and Oklahoma to assess how and where aid is needed.

CERF+ is reaching out to artists in the craft disciplines. You can find out more at craftemergency.org.

The Actors Fund has offered emergency financial assistance to performing artists and entertainment professionals in Texas, Oklahoma, and Arkansas. Details are available at actorsfund.org.

If GIA members have additional information to share about their relief and/or recovery efforts in the storm areas, please let the National Coalition know and they’ll use their networks to get the word out. You can send information to NCAPER Consultant/...

Posted on May 27, 2015 by Steve

This message is going out to CERF+'s contacts in the areas of Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas affected by flooding recently, as well as statewide arts organizations. We hope you and your neighbors are safe and have been able to avoid loss from the flooding.

CERF+ would like to make sure that any professional artist working in a craft discipline seriously affected by the disaster is aware of the emergency relief assistance available from CERF+. If, as an artist, you have suffered loss, please contact them at relief@craftemergency.org. or call (802) 229-2306.

If, as an arts organization representative, you know of artists in the disaster areas, or plan to correspond with your artist constituents in the near future, please pass this information on to the folks at CERF+. If there are organizations that directly work with artists in your community that you think CERF+ should be aware of, please send along their contact information.

Posted on October 8, 2014 by Steve

Organized by GIA’s Support for Individual Artists Committee and the National Coalition for Arts’ Preparedness and Emergency Response, this preconference is an examination of the readiness, response, and emergency support systems for artists. It will be held on Sunday, October 12 at the GIA 2014 Conference in Houston.

Posted on September 20, 2014 by Steve

New York Cultural Affairs Commissioner Tom Finkelpearl and Office of Emergency Management Commissioner Joseph Esposito have announced the launch of CultureAID (“Culture Active in Disasters”), a response and recovery network committed to strengthening New York City’s cultural community before, during, and after disasters.

CultureAID was developed in direct response to Hurricane Sandy—which struck New York in October 2012—and to the increasing threat that severe weather and climate change pose to the region. In the days and weeks following Sandy, an enormous amount of information, technical and financial assistance, and other resources were made available to affected groups and individuals. CultureAID was developed as a way to reduce redundant communications and make efficient use of the resources available. CultureAID will also help the community prepare for the next potential disaster by sharing resources and best practices about emergency preparedness throughout the year. Cultural organizations, artists, and other stakeholders in New York City are encouraged to visit www.cultureaidnyc.com to learn more about the network. Organizations are encouraged to join by...