London Mayor N. Breed and City Councilor Carmen Chu on Monday announced more than $ 12 million in general operating grants to fund arts and culture organizations. This year’s Grants for the Arts (GFTA) funding is primarily dedicated to the general operating support of arts organizations and also aims to support parades and community festivals to help restore the city’s cultural vibrancy and spur its recovery. economic.
“We know the pandemic has been tough on all of us, but it’s been especially tough on artists and cultural organizations in our city,” Breed said. “The arts are part of what makes San Francisco so special and creates an inclusive atmosphere for all who live and visit our city. In this critical time of our economic recovery, we must do all we can to bring back our community festivals that are loved by so many and support those that contribute to the vibrant culture of our city.
As chairman of the supervisory board, Breed spearheaded Proposition E, which was passed by voters in 2018 and allocated 1.5% of hotel tax revenue to the arts. Due to the loss in hotel tax revenue caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Breed has allocated funds from the General Fund to cover the losses during this year’s budget cycle. Breed’s budget for fiscal year 2021-2022 also includes $ 12 million for GFTA to support arts organizations, as well as parades and festivals.
“Cultural festivals and the arts have always been a vital part of San Francisco’s vibrant community. They draw people to San Francisco, bring communities together and in many ways define our experiences here, ”said Carmen Chu, city administrator. “Supporting our arts organizations during these difficult times is key to our city’s recovery. “
The city administrator has managed GFTA, a program that has provided a stable and reliable source for general operating costs to support arts and culture organizations in the city since 1961. Since its inception, GFTA has distributed over $ 400 million. dollars to hundreds of nonprofit arts and cultural organizations. The GFTA funds more than 250 arts organizations each fiscal year, including those that organize and support parades and festivals across town.
Committed to serving the diverse communities of San Francisco, this is the first year that GFTA has implemented a fundraising process that has used a strong equity lens to focus on deeply rooted arts organizations and serving diverse populations. .
“Having arts and cultural events on every street corner in the city is what people live here and why people from all over the world visit San Francisco. Art and culture are the soul of San Francisco, ”said Vallie Brown, director of Grants for the Arts. “As San Francisco slowly emerges from our long COVID nap, it is vital that we support our arts organizations and our community’s parades and festivals. “
“Live cultural music and dance has been absent from our community throughout the pandemic,” said Roberto Hernandez, CEO of Carnaval San Francisco. “We appreciate Mayor Breed and Grants for the Arts for funding all communities as we begin to recover and heal. “
In addition to parades and festivals, GFTA funds other essential artistic activities, especially those that capture and reflect the experiences of the city’s diverse communities, including BIPOC and LGBTQ communities and cross-cultural collaborations.
“We are fortunate to live in one of the best cities in the world that cares about the stories, artists and arts organizations of BIPOC by making concrete efforts to fund them,” said Rodney Earl Jackson Jr., Artistic Director of the San Francisco Bay Area Theater. Company (SFBATCO). SFBATCO is a Black, Latin and Asian-led nonprofit organization that produces engaging theater that builds community, fosters intercultural dialogue and promotes social justice.
A full list of GFTA grants for fiscal year 2022 can be found here.