LOS ANGELES, Calif.— Today the Board of Supervisors approved a motion authored by Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell and co-authored by Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chair Hilda Solis, proclaiming the month of April as Arts Month throughout Los Angeles County. In addition, the motion builds on the County’s commitment to an equitable recovery from COVID-19 by seeking to sustain and expand the Los Angeles County’s Department of Arts and Culture’s Community Impact Arts Grant.
In 2015, the LA County Arts Commission launched the Community Impact Arts Grant (CIAG) to support a wide range of social service and social justice organizations in providing key cultural and social services to County residents. Since then, the Department of Arts and Culture has continued in supporting CIAG grantees who serve diverse communities and populations with incomes below the federal poverty level.
“From mental health care to youth development programs, grantees of the Community Impact Arts Grant provide critical services and show the multi-purposeful role art plays in enriching lives,” shared Supervisor Holly J. Mitchell “I’m proud of the support of the Board in recognizing and strengthening the important delivery system of services CIAG supports. The celebration of April as Art Month allows us to meaningfully recognize the impact of the arts in advancing social justice, healing, and the recovery of our communities.”
“Arts and culture play a critical role in the economic and social resiliency of LA County, not just in our recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, but also in the long-term vitality of our communities,” said Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chair Hilda L. Solis, Supervisor to the First District. “By declaring the month of April as Arts Month, we recognize that cultural inclusion is critical to the overall health and well-being of our families.”
The motion subsequently instructs the Chief Executive Officer, in collaboration with the Director of Arts and Culture and in consultation with the Executive Director of the Anti-Racism, Diversity, and Inclusion Initiative to report back during Final Changes for Fiscal Year 2021 – 2022 to determine what funding sources are available and provide recommendations for sustaining and expanding the Community Impact Arts Grant to ensure equitable funding to organizations serving underserved and the most impacted communities across LA County.
“The Community Impact Arts Grant is an innovative way to provide access to arts programming wherever it happens – in health nonprofits, the human services sector, criminal/restorative justice, community/economic development, and environmental justice, to name a few. Integrating arts into the social services and social justice missions of our grantees is an equity strategy that meaningfully benefits communities, especially communities that are too often underserved,” said Kristin Sakoda, Director of the Los Angeles County Department of Arts and Culture. “CIAG aligns with the Department of Arts and Culture’s longstanding support of diverse arts nonprofits, while also recognizing that not everyone experiences arts and culture through traditional outlets.”
CIAG complements the County’s broader efforts to achieve equity and inclusion by utilizing the creative power of the arts to provide key services to underserved communities, many of which have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic. “Arts programming in the social justice and social service fields address a key need not only in the 2nd Supervisorial district but throughout the County” shared Pamela Bright Moon, LA County Arts Commissioner for the Second District. “CIAG was designed to promote cross-sector work and is essential in supporting the multifaceted arts ecology. I applaud the Board’s leadership in supporting Arts Month by supporting this important initiative.”
Gustavo Herrera, Executive Director of Arts for LA a non-profit that includes a coalition of over 165 member organizations serving communities throughout LA County shared “We thank the Board of Supervisors for their leadership in proclaiming April Arts Month. Today’s vote on the Community Impact Arts Grant is a step forward for LA County towards building a more just cultural infrastructure that centers racial and economic equity in our recovery”
To learn more about LA County’s Department of Arts & Culture, visit: https://www.lacountyarts.org.