A Message from AFA Board Chair Mary Rozsa de Coquet
I am pleased to share with the arts community that the Alberta Foundation for the Arts (AFA) Board of Directors has approved its 2022-23 spending plan based on the current provincial allocation, which was maintained at $25.6 million this year.
There is no doubt the impacts of the pandemic continue to be felt in our arts community. Our priorities this year are to continue to provide stable support for Alberta’s arts organizations and to maintain funding levels for programs that support individual artists. We will also prioritize ongoing engagement activities to ensure our support remains effective and responsive.
The AFA continues to work on implementing its pluralism policy in alignment with the development of a new strategic plan. The board is currently reviewing the final report provided by Parodos Social Marketing, who were engaged in 2021 to provide the AFA with recommendations for actions the AFA could take in implementing this policy to promote equity, respect and understanding. The AFA will continue to reach out to underrepresented groups and address accessibility issues.
Pluralism also promotes artistic activities in and through the arts that foster social and wellness outcomes for Albertans and pave the way for sector growth through cross-sectoral partnerships and enhanced public profile. There will be funding support for such pluralism projects through the Organization Activation Projects grant this year. More information will be shared with the community on this grant and the AFA’s full scope of pluralism initiatives in the coming months.
Finally, we are pleased to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the AFA Art Collection in September 2022. This is a significant milestone that the AFA will recognize throughout the year, including through funding that will go directly to artists. More information on this will be shared in the coming months.
On June 14, Alberta moved to the third and final step of the government’s phased removal of public health measures for COVID-19, which means that all government-enforced health mandates are now removed. While most restrictions that directly affected arts activities were eliminated when the province moved to Step 2 on March 1, this still represents a major milestone in moving towards full recovery of the sector. We are hopeful this will spark the increased return of arts audiences and a grateful embrace of Alberta’s arts scene.
We look forward to reviewing the results of the 2021-22 intake of Organization Activation Projects grant program, which provided funding to organizations to support relaunch, recovery and organization adaptability. Funding was disbursed earlier in 2022, and reports will be due later in 2022-23. The AFA will use this information, as well as additional feedback we intend to collect from our clients this year to inform any future supports to help the sector return to full capacity.
As we look forward to a brighter future, with the vibrancy and creativity of Alberta’s arts sector returning to its full capacity, the AFA remains committed to providing support and contributing to the development of our provincial arts community.
Mary Rozsa de Coquet, Chair
Contact the Chair at firstname.lastname@example.org