I had to take a break from the traditional Blog schedule to share some thoughts. I like many of you "share" on facebook the news about arts funding and like many of you I write emails to my elected officials about the importance of arts funding. For the longest time I had very little knowledge about what these "funds" actually were and why they were important to me and my community. But over the past three years I have become extremely familiar to what this actually means. We are not in a good place.
That is the truth. The truth that is difficult for an optimist like myself to admit.
I love the arts, no, I have a deep and profound respect for the arts. I live in awe of its ability to impact, change, and develop my community. I believe that it is important to the five parishes that NCLAC serves of Jackson, Bienville, Claiborne, Union, and Lincoln. I have seen the importance of the arts in a community but more importantly I have witnessed what the lack of cultural events can do to our home.
I could quote sources citing the importance of arts funding but I know through conversations with my community that I don't need to. You have seen the positive results from arts programming and know all to well the negative effects it's growing disappearance has on our home.
In the past three years NCLAC has seen increased support from individuals and corporate donors, we have done a close evaluation of our programming and have been extremely fiscally conservative and responsible with our budget. However, non profits depend on a diverse stream of support and loosing funds from state-wide grants will make a huge dent in our ability to adequately serve our community.
This leaves me questioning this morning "what will we do"?
Leigh Anne Chambers, Executive Director, NCLAC