New SCFD survey data signals threat to arts and culture sector due to economic challenges of the pandemic
If you just can’t live without live music. If your holiday season won’t be complete without the Nutcracker or Granny Dances to a Holiday Drum. If you treasure a childhood memory of the zoo or a favorite exhibit at a museum. If you can’t remember a summer when you didn’t attend your favorite festival. Now is the time to act.
That was the message sent by government and cultural leaders as they launched the Arts through it All holidays campaign urging all who can to give back and support our arts and culture organizations during their holiday giving. The public awareness campaign, with the tagline of Gifts of Art from the Heart and a call to action to remember arts and cultural organizations in holiday gift giving or charitable giving, will launch in early December and run through the holiday season to ensure arts and culture endure.
Recent survey data from the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District (SCFD) show that the economic distress caused by the pandemic for arts and culture organizations is dire. For more than half of the organizations funded by the SCFD’s voter-approved sales tax revenue, the earned revenue loss during the pandemic has been significant or nearly total. Data collected also shows that 33 percent of the jobs created by these organizations have been lost to furlough, layoff or elimination. Three quarters of the organizations said they were only moderately confident, or not confident at all their organizations would survive the pandemic.
“The arts and culture that we all love are under real economic threat. Months of dark stages and shuttered venues are simply not sustainable for these groups. And hundreds more small, local organizations are at a breaking point,” said SCFD Executive Director Deborah Jordy. “This holiday season we’re asking all who can to act to ensure that when conditions are safe once again, we can gather to hear our favorite Colorado musicians, watch a new play, or visit a museum to see a visual art exhibition.”
The pandemic and economic recession have had a disproportionate and devastating effect on the local creative sector. The Arts through it All campaign will encourage individuals to consider the arts in their holiday gift giving by giving the gift of an arts subscription or membership, or shopping online at a cultural gift shop, or simply making a charitable contribution either directly to a local arts organization or to one of the arts relief funds, such as the COVID-19 Arts and Culture Relief Fund. An immediate opportunity will be Colorado Gives Day on Dec. 8 where individuals can connect with their favorite cultural organization to give. The holiday Arts through it All campaign will encourage:
- GIVE a donation to local arts and culture organizations and relief funds
- GIFT a membership, subscription or class
- SHOP local and support artists
More information at artsthroughitall.org.