The Culture and Heritage department is accepting applications from arts organizations within for operating grants and project grants until Oct. 19.

The Culture and Heritage department is accepting applications from arts organizations within for operating grants and project grants until Oct. 19.

Cultural grants available

NANAIMO – Changing made involving the culture grant process.

The City of Nanaimo is inviting arts and culture related groups based in Nanaimo to apply for Culture and Heritage operating grants and project grants for 2016.

Chris Barfoot, City of Nanaimo Culture and Heritage coordinator, says project grants replace the events and festivals grant that the city offered in years past.

“We are looking for groups to maybe show and highlight some of the collaboration projects that they are working on as well as the events,” Barfoot said.

Earlier this year, city council and the Culture and Heritage department were questioned about how the recipients of the grants were determined.

As a result, the department held public review sessions and have made a few changes to the grants program.

“We met with all the groups past and present and … we heard about their concerns and with the review … we addressed we believe as many of those concerns as we could,” Barfoot said.

Among the changes is the formation of the Culture and Heritage Commission, a group made up of members not affiliated with the Culture and Heritage department.

The commission, which  replaces the Cultural Committee and Nanaimo Community Heritage Commission, will make recommendations as to which groups received funding and the amount of funds. The recommendations are then brought forward to city council, who then decide whether to approve the grants.

Barfoot says the grant assessment criteria is now much easier for groups to understand and that his department will be able to help groups with the applications.

“The assessment criteria is now clearly defined. It is now a weighted assessment criteria, so groups will know ahead of time what they are being assessed on and to what extent,” he said.

There will now be a grant appeal process for groups who feel that they didn’t receive a fair amount of money.

“Any appeals to the grants would go to a new committee for review,” Barfoot said.

The application deadline for both grants are Oct. 19 at 8:30 a.m.

For more information, including application forms, please visit http://bit.ly/1OfceiT.

arts@nanaimobulletin.comTwitter: @npescod

 

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