The Greater Houston Area Arts Community Needs Our Help.
At this time, the emergency Relief Fund for Artists and Arts Workers has been fully expended. All funds have been distributed to those in need through panels of community and arts experts who reviewed applications. Please see ready.haatx.com for more and ongoing information about financial and other forms of help. And sign up for the HAA newsletter, where curated recovery and resilience resources are shared every two weeks.
If you are interested in supporting another area of our work outside of The Greater Houston Area Arts Relief Fund, please visit the Houston Arts Alliance donation page, so that artists can continue being bold, productive, and strong.
The Greater Houston Area Arts Relief Fund for Artists and Arts Workers will offer grants to artists and arts managers to supplement lost wages because of COVID-19. Most recently, in response to the February 2021 Winter Storm, the fund will be flexible to take applications to support both COVID-19 and help in areas related to individuals affected by the storm. These emergency grants will cover basic need expenses such as food, rent, and medical needs, and related damages and losses to the Texas Winter Storm. After we help our arts community with the most basic needs, we will turn to help nonprofits to sustain their work..
About the Fund:
This collective of arts organizations launched the Relief Fund for artists and arts workers on April 1 because our community was in distress. Canceled contracts, reduced hourly work, and layoffs meant our community members were struggling to pay rent, access basic healthcare, and pay for food.
Over the last few months, you have donated, collectively, over $330,000 for these members of our community and HAA has been able to distribute over 500 emergency relief stipends. And, because the pandemic continues to further impact our communities economically and medically, we will be continuing the fund.
Houston continues to be one of the hardest-hit cities in America. And the arts are one of the hardest-hit sectors. We have nearly 60% unemployment, and more than half of earned income and donations, both, are lost. Organizations are closing. Artists are struggling. Amber Cleveland, an artist, and owner of a small art school told us, “I’ve been applying to as many opportunities as I could find and only heard back from a few places. The money from the Relief Fund was the first to come and that gave me hope.”
Artists and arts workers are what make up our thriving and vibrant arts scene. And those people NEED our help. There is no better time than today to show love and support than now. All the funds raised go to artists and arts workers in our community. Make a donation to help support and protect what brings us joy, what makes meaning out of confusion, and what connects us as Houstonians.
You Can Help by Making a Donation to the Greater Houston Area Arts Relief Fund.
To ensure the greatest impact for the Greater Houston Area arts community, the following organizations are partnering together:
City of Houston's Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs
Dance Source Houston
East End Cultural District
5th Ward Cultural Arts District
Fresh Arts/Arts District Houston
Galveston Historical Foundation
Houston Arts Alliance
Houston First Corporation
Houston Museum District
Mid-America Arts Alliance's Engage Houston
Midtown Cultural District
Theater District Houston
University of Houston, the Kathrine G. McGovern College of the Arts
This effort is in part supported by the City of Houston.
As damage continues to accrue, a survey of economic impact from March 27, shows nearly $50M in real and anticipated losses for Houston's arts community.
•Artists felt the financial sustainability of their artistic practices was precarious prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.
•Even with external sources, artists’ individual incomes are low, with a majority earning less than $30, 000 annually.
•Almost 1 in 5 artists in the region do not have health insurance.
Artists and Arts Workers: To apply to receive a grant, visit: bit.ly/Apply4ArtsRelief
Resources for the Arts Community: https://ready.haatx.com/covid-19
Thank you for ensuring the arts community is bold, productive, and strong.
Images Courtesy of dabfoto creative services/ David A. Brown and Kasey Marsh