The Indian American non-profit arts organization India Center Foundation, in partnership with MELA Arts Connect, April 6 announced the formation of The South Asian Arts Resiliency Fund, a grant program for South Asian artists and arts workers in the U.S. in the fields of the performing arts, film, visual arts or literature who have been impacted by the economic fallout of COVID-19 due to postponed or canceled performances, events or exhibitions.
ICF will provide launch funding of $20,000 towards this initiative, according to a press release. The fund will be co-managed by MAC and supported by a crowdfunding campaign, via a GoFundMe page, as well as multiple live streaming experiences. With the community’s support to reach the targeted goal of $500,000, the fund will be able to provide grants to hundreds of arts workers around the country.
In an ongoing survey about the economic impact of the coronavirus on the arts sector, Americans for the Arts has captured a crippling loss of more than $114 million as of April 4, 2020. “And the situation is only going to get worse, before it gets better,” said Raoul Bhavnani, Indian American co-founder of ICF. “Communities count on the arts to rally around, to gather and to find connection, especially in times of crisis, and the South Asian community is no different,” he said. “With necessary physical distancing in place for the foreseeable future, the arts community — artists, producers, agents, managers, administrators, technicians — are unable to perform or produce their work for audiences and are losing their livelihoods. Losses will only continue to mount unless we choose to support artists NOW, and we hope individuals, corporations and other arts organizations will join us in this critical endeavor.”
The fund will provide support for artists and arts personnel in the U.S. through project grants on a rolling basis for the development of work, particularly during the ongoing pandemic, the release said.
Examples of such projects are:
- Creation of music, dance, theater, film, visual arts or literature projects (ongoing or new)
- Research for development of music, dance, theater, film or visual arts projects (ongoing or new)
- Strategic planning by a manager or agent for an artist
- Content creation for project deployment
- Creation of resources for artists to support careers in the arts.
Eligible applicants are United States-based South Asian arts workers in the performing arts, film, visual arts or literature who can demonstrate loss of income because of canceled or postponed engagements due to COVID-19.