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Equity Access in the Arts

Deadline: 11:59 MDT on June 15, 2023

The Equity and Access in the Arts program is one of the ways the Edmonton Arts Council pursues our commitments to increasing support for artists and arts professionals from Indigenous and equity-seeking communities as outlined in Connections & Exchanges: A 10-Year Plan To Transform Arts & Heritage in Edmonton.

Approximately $600,000 is budgeted for this program in 2023

Stream 1: Exploration & Experimentation

Stream 1 supports an individual artist to work on creation, experimentation, or research activities. Grant amounts are fixed at $5,000 to support subsistence and any additional costs to the individual while they take the time to pursue artistic work.

Stream 1 specifics

Stream 2: Skills & Career Development

Stream 2 supports receiving mentorship, attending a residency, or other forms of professional development for artists and arts professionals. Projects may be individual or collective, and grants are available up to $10,000 based on projected expenses, including artist subsistence.

Stream 2 specifics

Stream 3: Artist-Driven Major Projects

Stream 3 supports artistic projects materially ready for production and/or presentation, or projects that involve individual and/or collective creation leading directly to production and/or presentation. Projects may be individual or collective, and grants will be available up to $25,000 based on projected expenses, including artist subsistence.

Stream 3 specifics

Purpose of the program

The purpose of the program is to invest in a thriving and diverse arts community in Edmonton by supporting Edmonton based artists and collectives from communities that face barriers to access. This includes, but is not limited to, groups whose members are treated differently because of systemic barriers that disadvantage people based on their Indigenous heritage, racialized backgrounds, identifying as Deaf or having a disability, sexual orientation and gender identity, and/​or immigration status.

The EAC’s Equity & Access in the Arts grant has three distinct streams, which each have their own evaluation criteria and assessment process. An individual or collective may only apply to one stream at each deadline and may only receive one grant from this program annually from January to December.

What to consider when applying

Read the guidelines carefully to understand the criteria. If you have questions, please contact grants@​edmontonarts.​ca.

  • The EAC will accept only one submission per applicant, per deadline.
  • An individual or collective may receive one grant from this program annually from January to December.
  • An individual may be a part of more than one collective.
  • An individual that is part of more than one collective may not be the primary applicant on more than one application.
  • Eligible applicants for an Individuals & Collectives grant who have experienced systemic barriers can receive funding from both Individuals & Collectives and Equity & Access in the same calendar year. This is an effort by the EAC to re-balance historic inequities in these areas.
  • However, eligible applicants who apply to both Individuals & Collectives and Equity & Access cannot apply with the same project/​work or receive funding for the same project/​work.

Eligibility for individuals

Individuals must:

  • Have an existing and committed practice in any arts discipline (including but not limited to customary and contemporary Indigenous or other cultural work) or have a history of other professional activity in the arts sector;
  • Be 18 years of age or older;
  • Be a resident of the Edmonton / amiskwaciy- waskâhikan region at the time of the application and for the duration of the project. This region includes the City of Edmonton and the Indigenous communities of Enoch Cree Nation, Alexander First Nation, Paul First Nation and Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation (artists may be asked to provide proof of residency);
  • Be a Canadian Citizen, Permanent Resident, or have a valid open work permit.

Eligibility for collectives

Collectives must:

  • Have a majority of members who are eligible Individuals as described above; and
  • Have one individual (the primary applicant) submit an application on behalf of the collective.

Selecting a grant stream

Stream 1: Exploration & Experimentation are fixed at $5,000 

Stream 2: Skills & Career Development may request up to $10,000 

Stream 3: Artist-Driven Major Projects may request up to $25,000 

Read carefully through all three streams to evaluate which one best matches the goals or outcomes of the project.

What is not supported

  • Advanced education, such as would lead to a degree or diploma.
  • Projects that primarily benefit an organization rather than an individual or collective.
  • Costs already supported by the EAC through other programs.
  • Activities or costs that occurred before the application deadline.
  • Equity and Access grants are not intended to support artists who primarily work outside the City of Edmonton and the Indigenous communities of Enoch Cree Nation, Alexander First Nation, Paul First Nation and Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation.
  • Individuals or collectives who have overdue Edmonton Arts Council final reports will not be eligible.
  • Individuals or collectives may not be successful more than once annually from January to December.

Application support

Access Support

Those facing barriers while completing their application may be eligible for Access Support. A barrier can include but is not limited to, language, culture, physical or cognitive limitations, or any inequity that may complicate completing an application. This support provides funding for specialized assistance in conveying the artists’ ideas. This could include hiring a typist, interpreter, translator, or other type of support worker to help with submitting a clear application that accurately reflects the artist’s ideas and intentions.

Normally, professional grant writers are not supported by this program unless they are assisting the artist with a specific barrier. Eligible assistance will be supported up to $500.

Draft application assistance

The EAC offers the opportunity for applicants to have their draft application reviewed before the application deadline. The review process could include:

  • Clarifying which stream best aligns with your project’s goals and outcomes.
  • Help to define the intentions and outcomes of your grant application.
  • Reviewing budgets and support materials.
  • If you would like someone to review your draft application with you, please email no later than 10 business days before the application deadline. Requests for review made after this time may not be possible.

Application process

Through the EAC’s online portal SmartSimple:

  • Complete (or update) an individual profile in the online portal eac​.smart​sim​ple​.ca. This is required by whoever is submitting the application (the primary applicant).
  • Once a profile has been made, the Equity & Access in the Arts application form is made available in SmartSimple under the Open Opportunities” icon. If the applicant already has a profile, the Equity & Access in the Arts application will be visible a minimum of 30 days before the application deadline.
  • If the application is for a collective, all named members of the collective based in Edmonton will need Individual profiles in SmartSimple by the application deadline.

Reporting requirements

Applicants who receive funding through this grant opportunity will be required to submit a report on the work that they undertook. For applications connected to a specific project, the applicant will be expected to assess the outcomes of the project with respect to the goals that they articulated in their application, and well as account for the actual spending of budgets.

Need help with your application?

For further information or clarification on any aspect of your application, please reach out to us. Call 7804242787 or contact grants@​edmontonarts.​ca