Weathering the Economic Storm Fund Helps Stabilize Arts Groups

Elementz, The Hip Hop Youth Arts Center

Greater Cincinnati funders joined together to help arts and culture organizations stabilize operations during tough economic times. The funders (see below) established the Weathering the Economic Storm Fund to help both individuals and nonprofits reduce the devastating effects of the economic downturn. The Fund recently awarded $160,000 in grants to 26 small and midsize arts organizations. The grants will help pay for fixed costs that are not typically covered by other grants, for example, utilities or audit fees. Another $40,000 was designated from the fund to add to the Fine Arts Fund’s Working Capital Loan Fund.

The Tristate region has a long tradition of community support for organizations that provide access to the arts. As a critical piece of both our local heritage and our regional economy, it is important to support these organizations all of the time, but especially now as many arts and culture organizations are struggling to survive through unprecedented economic challenges. Arts and culture funding provided by the Weathering the Economic Storm Fund is specifically intended to support small and midsized arts and culture organizations that typically have little or no endowment or financial “cushion” to fall back on in times of crisis.

Grants may be used toward fixed costs such as occupancy costs, utilities, insurance, audit fees, and others that are typically not covered by other grant programs. “These grants will help lighten the financial burden for many organizations, allowing them to stabilize some arts jobs and programs,” said Ellen Gilligan, Vice President for Community Investment, The Greater Cincinnati Foundation (GCF). GCF convened the group and manages it on behalf of the funding partners.

The Weathering the Economic Storm Fund was established by GCF and partners in March as a response to the current economic crisis. The first round of grants focused on providing assistance to families in need and help them re-establish financial stability and economic security.

The following organizations received grants in this round:
 
Art Links
Ballet Tech Ohio Performing Arts Association
Bi-Okoto Drum and Dance Theater
The Carnegie Visual & Performing Arts Center
Cincinnati Boychoir Inc.
Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra
Cincinnati Landmark Productions
Cincinnati Shakespeare Company
Clifton Cultural Arts Center
Madisonville Arts Center
Contemporary Dance Theatre, Inc.
Elementz
Ensemble Theatre of Cincinnati
Fitton Center for Creative Arts
Frank Duveneck Arts and Culture Center
Kennedy Heights Arts Center
Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, Inc
Know Theatre of Cincinnati
Learning Through Art
Linton Chamber Music Series, Inc.
Madcap Productions Puppet Theatre
Middletown Arts Center
Oxford Community Arts Center
Visionaries and Voices
Vocal Arts Ensemble of Cincinnati
Women Writing for (a) Change Foundation

The following organizations have contributed to the Weathering the Economic Storm Fund and share the decision-making about grants from the fund:
 
The Butler Foundation
Christ Church Cathedral
Clermont Community Fund of GCF
The Ruth J. & Robert A. Conway Foundation
The Thomas J. Emery Memorial
The Carol Ann and Ralph V. Haile Jr./U.S. Bank Foundation
The Health Foundation of Greater Cincinnati
The Andrew Jergens Foundation
Macy’s
The Mayerson Foundation
National City Foundation
Northern Kentucky Fund of GCF
The Daniel and Susan Pfau  Foundation
Procter & Gamble Fund of GCF
William Cooper Procter Fund
Scripps Howard Foundation
United Way of Greater Cincinnati
Women’s Fund of GCF
Craig Young Family Foundation
 
More than dozen individuals and GCF donors, including every member of The Greater Cincinnati Foundation Governing Board, have also made contributions to the fund.


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