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.

April 30, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

The Flamboyan Arts Fund and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, with additional support from Broadway Cares, launched a $1 million emergency relief fund to support individual artists and cultural organizations in Puerto Rico to help mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the arts and culture sector in the island.

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April 27, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

In a recent Monument Lab podcast, artist Mel Chin says the lesson from the coronavirus pandemic situation and other situations “is to exercise self-critique and empathy. How do you have to rekindle it for each situation,” he says.

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April 17, 2020 by admin

Abigail Savitch-Lew, Eli Dvorkin, and Laird Gallagher

Center for an Urban Future (CUF) is an independent, nonprofit think tank that generates innovative policies to create jobs, reduce inequality and help lower income New Yorkers climb into the middle class.

New York City’s vibrant arts and cultural sector has endured extraordinary challenges over the past several weeks. In an effort to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus, the city’s thousands of independent theatres, nightclubs, galleries, and performance venues have gone dark, and countless arts organizations have been forced to cancel nearly every event, opening, workshop, and public program on their calendars. For these organizations—and the many working artists employed by them—the economic impact of this mandatory shutdown is unlike any in recent memory.

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April 15, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

As arts grantmakers navigate the current stages of "a prolonged effort to stem the impact of COVID-19, many are already looking beyond the pandemic," as Mike Scutari writes at Inside Philanthropy.

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April 15, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

A page in Medium seeks to help Native Americans find actions and answers in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. Michael Woestehoff, Navajo Tribal Citizen, compiled an information hub of agencies taking action as well as details on gaming facilities, Bureau of Indian Education (BIE) school closures, to tribal leader emergency declarations.

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April 13, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

The University of Florida, supported by ArtPlace, a ten-year project to position arts and culture as a core sector of community planning and development by supporting creative placemaking across the U.S., released of a COVID-19 Arts Response repository.

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April 8, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) announced guidelines to distribute funding to nonprofit arts organizations from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act "to preserve jobs and help support organizations forced to close operations due to the spread of COVID-19," according to the announcement.

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April 6, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker announced recently a new relief program to provide financial assistance to the city’s creative scene and cultural organizations impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, The Chicago Sun Times reported.

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April 4, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

In Denver, a fund at the city’s public funding agency - IMAGINE 2020 Artist Assistance Fund – was modified for a state-wide partnership to offer relief for artists across the state of Colorado, and, in the process, nearly tripled in amount available to individual artists, according to a press release.

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April 1, 2020 by Carmen Graciela Díaz

The "literally overnight evaporation of gigs, commissions and sales": that is what the coronavirus crisis, as Next City puts it, has meant for many of America’s nearly 5 million cultural workers.

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