The Broward Cultural Division, working with local arts leaders, distributed more than $2.5 million in additional CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) funding to nonprofit arts organizations in Broward County. The funding helped preserve jobs and support organizations forced to limit operations due to the pandemic. Grants were distributed to existing Cultural Division grantees by December 30 and reimbursed expenses incurred prior to December 9.
In May, Broward Cultural Division also provided $428,000 in financial assistance to 38 Broward-based non-profit cultural organizations impacted by the COVID-19 crisis via one-time supplemental grants from its Broward Arts Relief Fund, bringing the Division’s total COVID relief funding to more than $3 million. The funding secured for this initial lifeline was made possible with sales proceeds from the Florida Arts License Plate Program.
After first covering public health costs, the Broward County Board of County Commissioners, led by arts advocate and Broward Cultural Council member, Mayor Steve Geller, approved the CARES Act allocation for arts and culture nonprofit organizations.
“This funding came at a crucial time for not only the organizations and institutions but for the County’s tourism industry as well. The arts and culture sector is an essential component for our community’s public health and for our local economy.”
Broward County Mayor Steve Geller
“People look at support for arts and culture as an optional luxury, but it is so much more than that. This significant allocation solidifies the County’s ongoing support of the impact of arts and culture in our community” said Geller.
Throughout this year, Broward Cultural Division worked with Mayor Geller as well as with local arts leaders who included NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale Director and Chief Curator, Bonnie Clearwater, Broward Center for the Performing Arts President/CEO, Kelley Shanley, and Museum of Discovery & Science President and CEO, Joseph P. Cox, who championed the effort that secured this funding.
Cox stated, “As the Museum had to temporarily close our doors to the public for nearly eight months, the Broward Cultural Division CARES Act grant allowed us to continue to provide virtual and offsite STEM (Science. Technology. Engineering. Math.) programming and curriculum support for educators, students and families. This investment by Broward County allows us to deliver programming and continue to serve the needs of our community.”
“What has been a devastating year for the arts, has also been a time of opportunity as we’ve been able to reexamine the essential role of arts and culture in our community”
Cultural Division Director Phil Dunlap
To view a current list of the County’s reopened arts organizations who received this funding, visit ArtsCalendar.com/Reopening. Please check with individual organizations about their health and safety guidelines.
The Broward Cultural Division advances arts and culture throughout greater Fort Lauderdale by investing in the creative sector and providing capacity building opportunities for artists, organizations and creative talent through events and activities that fuel Broward’s creative infrastructure. The Cultural Division includes the county’s Public Art & Design program, as well as grant programs that provide over $4.5 in annual support for Broward-based cultural organizations and artists, and engages the community in education and advocacy initiatives that support arts education at the local, state and federal levels. For more information on programs, grants, calls-to-artists and more, visit Broward.org/Arts.