In 2007 there were 21 federally funded youth arts companies across Australia
by 2014 there were 14
In 2016 there will be 4
In last week’s announcements of Australia Council project funding, 10 of the remaining 13 youth arts companies that were previously funded through the ‘Youth Program Fund’ have been refused funding beyond 2015. This is a devastating blow that has left many companies struggling to work out how to keep their doors open.
Sally Farr from Western Edge Youth Arts states, “This is going to destroy so much of what we’ve built over the last 4 years with Australia Council funds, particularly our emerging artists programs and after school ensembles. I can’t say specifically what the company will need to cut as this is now the big question for our organisation to deal with in the next few months.”
Enlisting the support of the wider arts community and the media, the sector has launched a campaign: #SaveYouthArts, to encourage the federal government and the Australia Council to step in and promise the assistance these small and important companies so desperately need. #SaveYouthArts is running in conjunction with the national #FreeTheArts campaign and we encourage everyone to use both hashtags.
We call on the government and the Australia Council to act immediately by:
– extending the Youth Program Fund in 2016 (as a short term transition measure).
– Working with the sector to restore 2007 levels of national investment in youth arts companies
– reinstating ArtStart program
The health and safety of Australia’s cultural future is at stake and action is needed now. Raise your voice and support #SaveYouthArts by contacting:
Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield
42 Florence Street
MENTONE VIC 3194
Phone: (03) 9584 8347
Phone Toll Free (Vic only): 1300 797 110
PO Box 788
Strawberry Hills NSW 2012
Ph: 02 9215 9000
For further information read our media release: #SaveYouthArts Release December 2015