ArtsGreensboro Gathered to Celebrate the Launch of the Inaugural Community Elevation Grant Program
On October 11, the ArtsGreensboro team hosted a celebration recognizing the official launch of the Community Elevation Grant Program. The Steering Committee, Street Team, and Board of Directors joined the fun to reflect on the tireless work that went into organizing the grant program. The evening was filled with fellowship and inspiration for future projects.
Internal discussions about the Community Elevation Grant program began early in 2020. The ArtsGreensboro team saw there was a need to connect with East Greensboro and decided to act. The program fosters community engagement by developing creative collaborations among community members, local artists, and arts organizations. In hopes of bringing sustainable art-based solutions to East Greensboro,
ArtsGreensboro formed a steering committee consisting of local leaders with personal connections to East Greensboro to discuss the desired outcomes of the grant program. The group reached a consensus that the projects should reflect the rich history and values of the community, and the best way to do that was to involve the community directly.
A street team of volunteers was tasked with entering each East Greensboro neighborhood and starting these conversations. The street team flooded community centers, housing developments, and apartment complexes with flyers and surveys, calling for other residents to share their opinions with ArtsGreensboro. Active Listening Discussions took place in central locations of East Greensboro every weekend in July to garner feedback and promote the grant to local creatives. At the end of the summer, the data was analyzed to best inform the steering committee’s decision-making for the grant cycle.
The opening of the grant application signifies the start of something groundbreaking. During the celebration, everyone in attendance shared their reasons for working on the grant and what outcomes they were most excited to see. The room was full of proud East Greensboro natives, NCAT Aggies, local business owners, and community leaders who wanted to make a positive change in their community. Though everyone had different backgrounds, a shared passion for art and creativity impacted most people’s decision to join the project. Everyone was proud of the progress made in just four short months, but the real work has only begun. Following the close of the grant application, ArtsGreensboro and the Steering Committee will begin organizing and facilitating the creative projects set to be completed next spring.
The arts are for everyone; they connect and inspire us. ArtsGreensboro is charged with creating a more equitable arts sector for all in Guilford County. Through initiatives like the Community Elevation Grant Program, ArtsGreensboro can close a gap and bring creative resources to historically underserved groups. We want our community to be the place where art thrives; to do this, everyone needs access to the resources they need to create.
ArtsGreensboro invests in programs that provide access to the arts for all citizens, support arts integration in our schools, build capacity for our arts community, and unify the community through the power of the arts.