Cariboo North arts groups attract strategic investments to encourage business partnerships

The program is supported by a range of private and public sector funders

Three Cariboo North arts, culture and heritage groups have attracted $16,000 in matching incentive funding that could leverage as much as five times that amount in business partnerships.

The program, supported by a range of private and public sector funders, including the Government of British Columbia, has proved very successful in communities in various regions across B.C. artsVest has already helped almost 150 small to mid-sized B.C. arts groups acquire skills and make alliances that will help them continue to make their communities great places to live, work, visit and build a future. In 2013/14, artsVest BC communities raised from three to six times their matching grants, from local businesses.

“In rural British Columbia, arts and culture play an important role in communities by providing citizens of all ages access to cultural experiences and opportunities for artistic inspiration,” said Coralee Oakes, Cariboo North MLA. “The artsVest program enjoyed a successful debut in the Quesnel region this year, helping local arts and culture organizations expand their funding base. Congratulations to all artsVest participants, organizers and local business for their support.”

“The Quesnel Art Gallery Society is very pleased to have been pre-approved for a matching grant from artsVest BC/Business for the Arts,” said Betty (Elizabeth) Watson, Director, Quesnel Art Gallery. “Response from local business has been very good and we are hopeful that it, along with other fund-raising initiatives, will allow us to employ a staff person at the Gallery in the not too distant future.”

This year a total of 63 organizations located in Prince George, the Cariboo Chilcotin, Thompson/ North Okanagan, Kelowna, the Fraser Valley and Nanaimo have qualified to participate in the artsVest BC program. Cariboo North groups participating in 2014/15 are: Arts on the Fly Festival Society, Bella Coola Music Festival and Quesnel Art Gallery.

artsVest™ was developed by Business for the Arts and expanded across Canada in 2011. It is currently also operating in Ontario, Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia and Toronto.

Founded in 1974, Business for the Arts is Canada’s only national charitable organization of business members who support the arts. Our vision is to inspire Canada’s business community to partner with the arts to ensure a thriving cultural sector. We connect, educate and invest to bridge the gap between business and the arts.

For more national information, visit www.businessforthearts.org. For more BC information please contact: Kathleen Speakman, Program Manager k_speakman@businessforthearts.org, 250 927 4360, www.artsvest.com.