AMaGA to deliver 3 million dollar support package to regional culture, heritage and arts organisations

AMaGA to deliver 3 million dollar support package to regional culture, heritage and arts organisations

In 2020, at the height of the pandemic, AMaGA, in partnership with the Federation of Australian Historical Societies (FAHS) made a submission to government seeking urgent support for small scale cultural groups throughout Australia who, at the time, were closing their doors and suspending operations due to lockdowns and other COVID-19 restrictions.

Ahead of May’s federal budget, Minister for Communications, Urban Infrastructure, Cities and the Arts, Hon Paul Fletcher MP today announced a significant regional support package in recognition that community arts organisations such as local museums and galleries as well as historical societies are a central part of regional economies and cultural tourism. These – often small – organisations, maintain, protect and display Australia’s heritage and the stories that accompany it.

The $3 million Culture, Heritage and Arts Regional Tourism (CHART) grants program will assist community arts, heritage and cultural organisations in regional Australia as they recover from the impacts of COVID‑19.

The CHART program will, via AMaGA, make grants of up to $3,000 available in 2021-22 to support these organisations to continue their preservation of Australia’s cultural heritage, including through the telling of the stories of their local communities in a post-pandemic environment. The initiative will also promote interstate visitation to regional areas that have been most affected by COVID-19.

In a joint statement today, AMaGA President, Robin Hirst and National Director, Katie Russell said, “We’re delighted to see the government respond so fulsomely to AMaGA’s advocacy on behalf of our members to recognise the importance of culture in community. The package Minister Fletcher has announced today provides a very welcome boost to community arts, heritage and cultural organisations in regional Australia. This support will energise community cohesion and wellbeing after such a long period of isolation and uncertainty.”

It is expected CHART eligibility criteria will be reasonably broad in order to allow the greatest variety of community groups, volunteer organisations, small museums, galleries and historical societies to re-boot their important work. It is anticipated CHART grants could assist with, for example: the cost of additional COVID-19 cleaning and hygiene measures, the display and preservation of collections, and events that engage regional communities.

The CHART grants program will open for applications in the 2021‑22 financial year.

Further details about the CHART program will be made available on AMaGA’s website, including eligibility criteria and how to apply, once program guidelines are finalised. An official launch and information sessions will take place at the AMaGA National Conference in Canberra, 7-10 June 2021 and concurrently released online.

More information will be available here and on the Office for the Arts website: https://www.arts.gov.au/covid-19-update 

 

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