Capacity Building

In the non-profit and arts sector we use the term “capacity-building” a lot but we seldom stop to compare notes about what we mean by the term.  To many non-profit staff and volunteers, it is all about the money and certainly more dollars builds our capacity. . . as long as those dollars are not wasted.  But there are other considerations in capacity building that can help us do more with what we have and position us to grow.

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Of interest to northern ON theatre artists and students

IMPACT THEATRE (Sioux Lookout)
is pleased to announce another great workshop in

Acting, Writing, and Directing for Film happening in Sioux Lookout, September 30-October 2, 2011.

We welcome all established and emerging artists between the ages of 13 to Adult within Northwestern Ontario to participate!

The goal of this workshop is to build the skills and regional connections needed to make a film adaptation of A ROUGH TRANSLATION- an original theatre production IMPACT Theatre created that addresses boundaries within dating relationships, identity and hope . To accomplish our goals we have invited the Actors Training Centre of Manitoba to provide intensive training related to acting, writing and directing for film. Our thanks to the Ontario Arts Council for the funding that has made this professional level workshop possible!

Mark these dates on your calendar!

Advanced Acting, Writing, & Directing for Film

Date: Sept 30 (6:30-9pm), Oct 1 (9-4), Oct 2 (9-4)

Instructors: Jeff Skinner & Nicholas Burns, Actors Training Centre of Manitoba

Location: Sioux Lookout, Queen Elizabeth High School (To be confirmed)

Who: Ages 13- Adult

Fee: Early Bird (by Sept 16): $50 Regular: $60

We we would be happy to provide billeting for out of town guests!

Just contact us to let us know what you need!

Workshop Description:

In this advanced level workshop participants will work with a professional film writer/editor to learn techniques to effectively tell a story through film. Using the story of A ROUGH TRANSLATION as a spring board for discussion participants will be introduced to different ways to address challenging subject matter and then given the opportunity to practice those techniques. With the coaching of a professional director and acting instructor participants will learn advanced acting techniques that bring a story to life ! Participants will have the chance to further their skills in the areas that interest them most including writing, storyboarding, acting, and directing. Through this workshop IMPACT Theatre hopes to connect with regional artists who might take part in the film adaptation of A ROUGH TRANSLATION, however all artists are welcome to attend.

* It is assumed that participants have some prior experience or training in acting, writing and/or film.

Artist Biographies:Jeff Skinner’s artistic career is very diverse and includes acting, writing, directing and producing in theatre, film and television. He has performed in over close to a hundred theatrical productions, films and television shows including The Big White with Robin Williams, Falcon Beach for Global and Scared Silent with Penelope Ann Miller. He is currently a partner in Two Lagoons Entertainment and enjoys sharing his skills and experience as an acting Instructor/Coach with the Actors Training Centre of Manitoba.

Nicholas Burns works as a freelance writer and artist creating storyboards using conventional and computer media. He has written many scripts for educational and mainstream comics, radio plays, short films, TV movies and feature films. He has storyboarded dozens of feature films, TV movies and music videos and has become well know in the industry as a “script doctor” with the ability to help writers and tell their stories. He has also written, produced and directed a mocumentary, Snoring, which was a winner at MocDocs and was broadcast nationally.


Register Early as Spaces are limited! See Attached Registration Form.


If you have any questions or want to learn more, contact:


Erin (EJ) Horvath, Director IMPACT Theatre
807-737-0019

Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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Celebrating the Life of Cayle Chernin Apr. 25

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Monday April 11, 2011

Celebrating the Life of Cayle Chernin Toronto, ON…

Join us for an evening of memories and entertainment honouring the life and work of celebrated Canadian actress, Cayle Cherin. In support of the newly founded Cayle Chernin Memorial Fund and hosted by David Gale and Deb Filler, this celebration will play for one night only, Monday, April 25 at 8:00 p.m. at the Bloor Street Cinema, 506 Bloor St. W. The evening will include musical performances, spoken word and dance, with performances by Tabby Johnson, Rosie Shuster, Steve Shuster, Spirit Synott, Jillian Rees Brown & Women of the Rock, Susan Gross, Kirsten Bishopric, Theresa Tova, Vladimir Jon Cubrt & Aidan Devine, Jayne Eastwood, Stanley Endersby, Keith McKie, Michael Fonfara, Johnny Wright, Robbie Rox and others (performers are subject to change).

Personal and professional anecdotes, photos and film clips will shared by Cayle’s closest friends and family and her loving husband, actor Dwight McFee.An online auction has been launched in support of the Cayle Chernin Memorial Fund and includes great gifts, exciting nights out, one-of-a-kind art and more. There will be plenty to bid on including autographed film and television memorabilia, singing lessons and photographic services; theatre tickets to Soulpepper, Tarragon, Factory Theatre and passes to Hot Docs, the Female Eye Film Festival and the Bloor Cinema. Don’t miss out on great items including clothing, jewellery, art and home decor from Dreamboat Lucy, 72 Jem Street, Theodore 1922, Tulips and Sunflower, McKenna Photography and Gift Certificates for Pineapple Kensington, Bungalow, Crema, Crush Wine Bar, The Lakeview Lunch and much, much more. The auction will run from April 12th to April 26th only. To sign up and bid on great items, visit http://vonality.com/caylecherninmemorial/.

A special thanks to Vonality for hosting the auction.

The Cayle Chernin Memorial Fund was created to commemorate the nurturing spirit of actress Cayle Chernin. The fund will award an annual cash prize to an emerging female artist in the performing arts, alternating yearly between theatre and film/digital media performers. The fund will and is administered by the Creative Arts Savings and Credit Union.

Cayle Chernin, actor, documentary filmmaker, teacher, mentor, and star of Don Shebib’s classic Canadian film Goin’ Down the Road and its recently completed sequel Down the Road Again, passed away on February 18th. Cayle was known for her talent, generosity, imagination, intellect and incredible smile. She was also valued for her commitment to women’s issues. Her career spanned more than four decades in film, on stage and developing new works and encouraging up and coming artists.

This is a Free Event, with donations being accepted for The Cayle Chernin Memorial Fund. Special thanks to Equity Showcase Theatre, The Creative Arts, Bloor Cinema and Paupers Pub, for their support of this event.

Find us on Twitter @caylesmemorial, and visit our Facebook page at Friends of Cayle.

– 30 –

Media Contact: Zoe Carter, Producer Cleopatra’s Needle Productions 416-346-0467 / cleopatrasneedle@bell.net

Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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Canadian Classical Music Coalition inaugural meeting

(Rec’d from George Zukerman)

The newly formed Canadian Classical Music Coalition [Coalition Canadienne de musique classique] [CCMC] is hosting a round-table discussion on the problems of programming classical music, at 2 p.m. on Monday, Nov 8, in the Alberta Room at the Westin Hotel.

The Coalition hopes to speak with one voice on issues of urgent need and interest to all areas of classical music interest, and we expect to submit recommendations to the conference for future consideration.

Please join us to express common concerns for the future of classical music in Canada.

Here is the proposed agenda for the meeting:

Canadian Classical Music Coalition/ Coalition Canadienne de musique classique

CAPACOA Round-Table – a part of the 2010 CAPACOA conference

SUBJECT: Proposed advocacy for classical music within CAPACOA

Date: Monday, Nov. 08 Time: 2 p.m..

Place: Alberta room Westin Hotel, Ottawa

AGENDA
(1) Opening remarks: – a chance to lead in the revitalization of classical programming and touring . Background and reasons
(2) Creating a community of classical music from Coast to Coast to Coast.
(a) can the Coalition become a “membership” organization?
(i) staffing and funding
(ii) dues?
(iii) increasing membership
(b) what is the Coalition’s role in relation to other existing organizations?
(3) Starting with CAPACOA
(a) how can CAPACOA be encouraged to stimulate the inclusion of more classical music programmes in volunteer and facility-managed series across the nation?
(b) how can CAPACOA join in the national efforts to return CBC Radio to its mandated role as public broadcaster of classical music and otherwise encourage national broadcasting of classical content through CBC or other broadcast outlets?
(c) how can CAPACOA best support moves to maintain and strengthen the operating and touring funding needs of Canadian classical music arts organizations and artists, both at home and abroad?
(d) which organizations [national or Provincial] do we approach next?
(4) Resolutions re the above for submission to CAPACOA
(5) New business from the floor
(9) Next meeting plans and adjournment

gzuk@telus.net George Zukerman
rgambrel@hotmail.com Rick Gambrel
scalesb@aol.com Barbara Scales
rmissen@sympatico.ca Robert Missen

Mail:
George Zukerman
2306 Harbourgreene Drive
Surrey, BC V4A 5J2
(604)538-5057
Fax (604)536-5037

Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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PLEASE POST: September 29, 2010

Unsolicited Scripts and Project Submission Guidelines

Canadian Stage accepts unsolicited scripts and previously produced projects for consideration for production.

Founded in 1987 with the merger of CentreStage and Toronto Free Theatre, Canadian Stage is one of Canada’s leading not-for-profit contemporary theatre companies. Led by Artistic & General Director Matthew Jocelyn, Canadian Stage produces and showcases innovative theatre work from Canada and around the world, allowing its audience to encounter daring work guided by a strong directorial vision and a 21st-century aesthetic. The company prides itself on presenting trans-disciplinary work and work in translation that pushes the boundaries of form and style. The company reinforces the presence of Canadian art and artists within an international context through work that mirrors the cultural diversity of Toronto. Canadian Stage has a long-standing commitment to education and enhancement programs for the public and investing in the art form by nurturing and developing theatre professionals while producing thought-provoking theatre and quality entertainment in Toronto, one of North America’s largest theatre centres. For more information, refer to canadianstage.com.

Submissions of both scripts and trans-disciplinary projects will be accepted in hard copy format only (no electronic submissions). DVDs and support materials are welcome. Submissions are reviewed by a reading committee made up of staff, artists and community members, and each project will receive a response within six months. Please note we do not provide a critique of your script or dramaturgical feedback.

Guidelines:
– Please provide two (2) copies of all materials including script or production project details including an outline of the play’s developmental history, artists involved and any other support materials.
– When possible, our committee members read each script blindly before looking at supplementary materials; please do not include your name on each page of your script.
– Please include a large self-addressed stamped envelope if you wish to have your materials returned.
– Our committee will review a script or project once.
– We will only review one script or project per writer per season.

Please send submissions to:
Unsolicited Script and Project Submissions
Attn: Natasha Mytnowych
Associate Director of Programming
Canadian Stage
26 Berkeley Street
Toronto, ON M5A 2W3
Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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An open letter to Kevin Krueger from Headlines Theatre

Received from Headlines Theatre

An open letter to Kevin Krueger,
BC Minister of Tourism, Culture and the Arts

August 19, 2010

Art is the psyche of a society

Dear Minister Krueger:

I am a co-founder of Headlines Theatre (1981) and have been the Artistic Director since 1984, having worked in the professional theatre since 1975.

As I know you are aware, it has been a very difficult year: specifically for arts and culture in British Columbia, and for all social services. The devastation of current funding cuts is creating permanent damage in what used to be a healthy community. Very recently, however, the difficulty over funding cuts has escalated into a deep concern for our eroding democracy.

I am grateful to Jane Danzo, past Chair of the BC Arts Council for the courage, commitment, and integrity it took for her to resign, in order to be able to speak openly about the relationship between government and arts funding. The alarm bell she is ringing about lack of consultation, erosion of a sacred arms-length policy, and the inexplicable history of the government ignoring the advice of its own bipartisan Standing Committee on Finance to restore arts funding is essential. Her letter is available here:

http://www.scribd.com/doc/36032945/Jane-Danzo-s-Letter-of-Resignation

There are, however, other things that need to be said:

Somehow, in the midst of deep cutting, you have found “new money” that equals $30 million dollars in Legacy Funding (over three years) to alleviate the effects of cuts to the arts. These funds must be given to the BC Arts Council with no strings attached so the Council can do its job: nurturing arts and culture in BC.

I would like to give you the benefit of the doubt, Minister Krueger. I hope that when you announced the “Arts Legacy” program “to celebrate and renew the pride and excitement British Columbians experienced during the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games”, with a timetable in which the programming must happen during the month of February 2011, the anniversary of the Olympics, that you somehow meant well. I am trusting that you do not fully understand the ramifications of these actions.

Government exists at arms length of the content of cultural expression across Canada for very important reasons. Cultural expression is the psyche of a society. When governments in other countries use culture for their own ideological agendas, people around the world have legitimate reasons for concern.

Freedom of thought and expression is crucial to a healthy individual and to a healthy society. Do we condone any level of government telling citizens what they can or should think in BC? I hope the answer to that question is an emphatic “no”.

Humans think in metaphor. Art is a metaphoric language. Diversity of artistic expression is the manifestation of a society’s psyche. When funding is available to arts and cultural groups with the caveat that the work must focus into a certain arena, as is the case with the Legacy funding, this is an attempt to control the content of artistic expression.

Throughout history, when governments have tried to control the content of cultural expression, whether from a left or a right ideology, societies have suffered terribly. All of us must be vigilant. It does not go unnoticed, for instance, that the logo of the BC Arts Council used to read “supported by the Province of British Columbia” and now reads, “an agency of the Province of British Columbia”. Someone decided to change the letterhead and it must have happened as part of an ideological shift regarding the purpose of the BC Arts Council and the artistic expression it has facilitated.

We appear to have entered a frightening time in BC and all of us need to pay attention. This IS how the fragility of democracy erodes. It is a very slippery slope.

Minister Krueger, I urge you, having found $30 Million in the midst of deep and devastating cutting, to give the funds to the BC Arts Council, no strings attached, and let them do their job.

Sincerely,

David Diamond, Artistic and Managing Director
Headlines Theatre

Headlines Theatre
323 – 350 East 2nd Ave
Vancouver British Columbia V5T 4R8
Canada

Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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Canadian Corporations vow to continue charitable support

The big news in the recently released Trends report on philanthropic giving from Ketchum Canada, is that Canadian corporations intend to hold the line on their charitable giving this year. For the past 20 years, Canadian corporate giving as a share of profits has been slightly on the increase. Each year Canadian corporations have put more actual dollars into philanthropic giving and also dug deeper into their pockets. This year they going to have to dig much deeper just to keep the dollar amount at the same level in the companies surveyed in the quarterly report.

Many companies suggested that their multi-year commitments meant that they had an inability to do much to respond to new requests for funding. At the same time companies report many more new requests coming across their desks as charities feel the pinch.

Austere times have meant a shift in priorities for corporations. Galas are going to find it more difficult to sell corporate tables as company heads find it difficult to justify thousands for black tie dinners when they are laying off staff and the charitable needs of healthcare, housing and poverty relief are in the news daily. Many charities are responding with changing their fundraising events or radically scaling them back.

Arts, culture and sports will be the losers as corporations continue to migrate funding to education, healthcare, and community programs.

Accountability is a key word in corporate funding these days. Corporations are selecting priority areas for their charitable dollars and now more than ever, projects seeking funding need to demonstrate how their activities are a fit with corporate goals. Reporting back to the funders on the reach of their corporate dollars–while always an important step in fundraising–is not an absolute requirement for ever being funded again by the corporation.

The 7 tips for non-profits in tough times is well worth reading this small quarterly.

Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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Grantwriting Basics — Grantwriting 101

There’s a lot about writing grant applications that crosses international borders and disciplines. I have written successful grant applications since about 1985 for projects as disparate as women’s fitness programs, community centre building upgrades, the establishment of a foodbank, the founding of a community music school, building improvements for a Black History museum, a Jewish children’s theatre production, an outdoor opera festival, a science-fiction themed audience outreach series surrounding a new opera festival, new music commissioning, outdoor music/theatre in the Ontario northwoods, and scores of more conventional arts projects.

Since the bulk of my grantwriting has been in the Canadian arts–where I have to assume a type of applicant and type of funder–that will be the basis of my examples.

Corporate fundraising uses some of these same techniques but as it is substantially a different process than grantwriting, it will not be explicitly covered in this article. Corporate foundations, on the other hand are foundations and should be handled as a part of your foundation campaign.

IDENTIFYING POTENTIAL FUNDERS

Know your government funders and programs: If you are an arts or non-profit management professional, you likely already know the major funders for your program activities. In the arts at the national level you will be researching programs primarily from Canada Council and Heritage Canada. (From time to time other departments offer programs for foreign travel, international marketing of arts events.) Provincially, you will be looking at provincial arts councils and tourism programs that are available to support marketing for cultural events. Municipally or regionally, you will be looking at the programs of civic, regional, or county arts councils and regional/local tourism initiatives. Don’t be afraid to call the Officers administering the programs to ask what programs fit your activities. Book a meeting with them if you are a new grantwriter, or new to the discipline, organization or geographic area. You may learn about programs that fit your planned activities that you didn’t spot on the website, or in the literature. Establishing a good relationship with your Grants Officer is a really important first step in grantwriting for an organization.

Subscription databases: If you can afford them and you don’t have a good list of funder contacts in your organizational records, you may want to subscribe to one of the subscription databases that are out there. They are expensive but it will only take one additional foundation grant that you would not have received to pay for the Bigonline database or Foundation Search Canada . Even one year of a subscription database will help you build your list of funders to the point where you may not need this resource in future years if cost is an issue. Note that these resources are not without some errors. I have found that where my organization has had an active relationship with a foundation, I have often had more accurate information regarding contacts, programs or even contact information changes. Building and maintaining your own contact list geared to your own program relationships/fits is irreplaceable.

Public tax information of charitable foundations: Okay, you can’t afford an online database but you don’t have much of a list of past donors in your organization. In fact the most recent foundation files are dated 1999? Sigh. I have so been there and done that. My commisserations!

Here is a real tip. Foundations are in themselves charities. As such they have to file a charitable information return with Canada Revenue. And that return is available to you free ONLINE. You can search the name of any foundation you are interested in, or search on a search term like “Foundation”, or by city, to net yourself a list to browse through. You can open up the information to see who is on the Foundation’s board and which organizations they have given to in the year of the return.

See below a screen shot of a search on all private foundations in Ontario sorted by city. All those with icons of returns on the right have accessible returns.

Buried deep within the return you will find a list of the projects and organizations funded by the foundation and the amount of each grant. This, together with the listed mission of the foundation, will give you a strong indication about whether this foundation is a fit for your programs and also what level your ask should be at for a program such as yours.


Finally access the foundation contact information of those foundations who fit and add that contact and any other information about website, deadlines, application forms and process to your grantwriting calendar.

Search public and foundation funders of projects like yours: You know who your competition is, who your colleagues are in the community and in neighbouring communities, and a little skill with online search engines and you are able to come up with some unique search terms that will generate a list of programs and services like your own. When you see a pattern of funding projects like your own, pull out all the stops to track that foundation or charitable giving program down. These are key funders with high probability of success.

Don’t forget local family foundations: Sometimes we overlook family foundations in our neighbourhoods who may not have a discernible pattern of giving to projects like our own. That is because their giving is focused on all quality of life projects IN OUR BACKYARD. They give a little bit to fitness, some to amateur sport and some to education. If we are looking for “arts funding”, we may never find them. However as the local symphony or community arts organization in their community of interest, we fit solidly within the mandate of their foundation and they want to support us! Don’t deny them the chance to give us their money.

PREPARING ORGANIZATIONAL AND PROJECT PROFILES: Annually when your next season is well advanced in planning and before the first major operational grants are due, it is a good practice to update Organizational and Project profiles. This main document will be used in the following ways:

  1. As is for press-release backgrounders, potential board members, foundation appeals to foundations
    that lack a set process, as backgrounders to foundation appeals with more targeted content in the main application.
  2. Tweaked for foundation appeals where the emphasis is on an aspect of the program, expanding some sections, condensing or omitting irrelevant content
  3. As fodder to cut and paste into relevant sections of government grant applications and into the application forms for those increasing numbers of foundations that have a formal application process.

Your organizational profile document will be about 4 to 7 pages long and will include the following, organized into sections and illustrated with photos, charts and graphs as needed:

  1. Mission, Incorporation date and charitable number–if you have a briefer version of your Mission, you may want to use it here.
  2. Brief history of the organization (updated, brief, and engaging)–focus on accomplishments, programs, community impact, staying away from tedious details that are of internal archival interest only. Quotes are great!
  3. Artistic or Leadership statement–Put a photo of your conductor or theatre artistic director beside their own words on what is exciting and valuable about your upcoming program. Don’t under-estimate the ability of Artistic Leaders to frame the importance of their work. If they won’t write something for you, give them a phone call, write down what they said and send it to them for approval. It will help you as a grantwriter. You may be looking at a season that looks like a hodge-podge. You have no “hook” to hang your thoughts on, but when the Artistic Director tells you the season is a “dialogue between the conventional and the new, the audience’s taste and the pressure for artistic innovation”… wow… you are off and running with and angle for your prose.
  4. Main Program Description–Describe your artistic season or core programs. While you might start with brochure content here, don’t stop there. You want to think always from the standpoint of impact. What are the benefits to the community, artists, the art form, ties to education or multiculturalism in your program? How is this program a stretch for your organization, or the artists in your orchestra?
  5. Community Outreach/Education and/or Adjunct Programs–separately describe your audience development and outreach programs. Start with and update the descriptions of annual and recurring programs. Next add what is special and unique about this years programs and share details of one-time programs. Illustrate your content with examples and photos from last year’s successful programs. Include participant’s quotes. Their words are always going to include more weight than yours, no matter how hot-shot you think you are as a grantwriter!
  6. Organization–Who are the key players? Brief bios of artistic leadership and management here. Organizational challenges and triumphs. Any major projects in the coming year. (A Board List will accompany where appropriate).
  7. Financial Position of the Company--If you have a debt, here’s where you explain it. If you have a surplus, here’s where you explain why it is needed and why it can’t be used for operating. Do you need to save to repair the roof next year, or are you on a cycle with a festival every two years? This is only a good news over-view, you’ll need a detailed explanation for funders if you have serious explaining to do. (You’ll attach financial statements where needed).

PROJECT PAGES:

  1. In addition to your main project description prepare single sheets for specific adjunct and optional projects. Are you going to have two composers visit schools next year? Prepare a “Composers in the Classroom” page. Are you going to have musicians from your orchestra give workshops? Prepare a “Young performers workshops” page. Are amateur ensembles going to play before your concerts? Prepare a “Community Overtures” page.
  2. Update or create project pages from the former years projects. If you had a successful collaboration with a youth choir last season, do a one-sheeter on it.
  3. Try to keep your project titles consistent as that will allow you to send three sheets on “Young Artist Spotlight” that detail past and planned activities. Although the activities may have slightly different aspects, the one linking idea–in this example, young artists on the stage–will allow you to build a case for this stream of activity within your organization.

These one sheeters will be used for:

  1. Targetted foundation and corporate appeals
  2. Reports to donors on prior projects funded
  3. Fodder for larger applications
  4. To add to or tweak applications to foundations where added emphasis is needed to match the funder’s priorities or mission.

YOUR GRANTWRITING CALENDAR

  1. You can use MS Outlook, a database, or a spreadsheet to construct an annual calendar for you to chart the deadlines and progress of your grantwriting.
  2. Be sure to keep and include your accumulated knowledge arising from your past successes and failures with the funding body. Many funders ask you when you applied to them last, what for and what was the result.
  3. As you talk to officers, look at websites, add all information into your grant calendar listing. Link to application forms and guidelines where those exist.
  4. Where deadlines are given, you can enter those along with your own projections of when to schedule work on this grant. Many foundations will give vague information such as “meet before the end of each fiscal quarter”. You will have to either find out the deadline or plan to have the application in well before the deadline might be anticipated to fall.
  5. You will determine patterns in your calendar which will allow you to schedule grantwriting weeks where you will lock the doors, turn off the phones for some part of the days and focus on a series of foundation appeals or a major operating grant. In my experience, given basic knowledge and writing skill, the major determiner of a successful grant is the time invested.

GRANTWRITING TEAM TASKS:
“Team, what team?” you ask. I smile as I have certainly written many grant applications on my own. However, there are ways to divide up the tasks to work with one or two other staff members in assembling materials for your more major grant applications. Even if it is only you on your lonesome, it may be helpful to you to think of working on your grant applications in terms of these tasks which may be extracted and assigned.

  1. Pre-read grant application forms, program guideline sheets AND final checklists, making a list of everything you will need for the grant. Please note that due to over-sight, omission or sadism, there will often be some item that you cannot get at the last minute which will only appear on one of three of these documents, usually the final checklist. If you only look at that as you prepare to mail your application, you will be up a creek without a paddle. Be sure you have defin
    ed the deadline properly: is it “postmarked by X date”, “in our office before 5 pm on X date”, or “in our office before midnight on X date”.
  2. Solicit, acquire and create a file of all needed external and internal documents: These can depending on the program include: financial quotes on equipment you are intending to purchase with grant funds, artistic statements from artistic leaders, signed releases from creative partners, signed Motions of the Board authorizing the application, copies of Letters of Incorporation, signed Financial Statements, work samples on CD’s, copies of scores, letters from references, marketing materials, marketing plans from companies on retainer, resumes of partners, etc. You will want to chart progress on these items to avoid nasty surprises.
  3. Create an electronic “fodder” file: On your computer network create a folder into which you throw copies of all documents likely to be of use to you during the grantwriting process. (You will delete these copies later). This will save you oodles of time in searching and opening and re-opening the same documents as you look for re-useable content. These documents will include your organizational profile, individual program sheets/descriptions. Strategic planning documents. Past grant application to the same government body. Recent grant application to other government bodies. Documents on financial planning. Statistics, budgets, and copies of marketing materials.
  4. Fill in grant cover sheet (get signatures done well in advance).
  5. Create separate documents for your main prose sections for the application.
  6. Cut and Paste–Use your current organizational profile and any other relevant content in your fodder file. Do a rough cut and paste of the material into the program sections where it best fits and might be helpful. Do not worry at this point about duplication. You are merely positioning the material for convenient accessibility.
  7. Statistics and Budget pages: Do these as fully as possible before starting on the prose. You can cut the time you spend on editing prose a lot more easily than truncating the time on stats sheets and Budgets. Trends evidenced in these sheets will help frame the prose.
  8. Write and edit. Self-explanatory as this seems, determine well in advance who the lead writer is and who gets to say, “this is done”. Arguments on these points seem to happen frequently in mid-sized to larger organizations and make a tense process much worse.
  9. Proofread.
  10. Make the required number of copies and prepare as required
  11. Checklist of everything submitted
  12. Copy to file.
  13. Cover letter
  14. Mail, courier or hand-deliver. Nothing quite compares with the festive atmosphere in the line-up at the last post-office open in a major city on the deadline of a major grant. It is a time to meet old colleagues and catch up with the news from last year. But really, we’d much prefer to have been home at 5 pm rather than be in a post office at 10 minutes to 10 pm.

WRITING TIPS

  1. Make a plan: List everything you want to tell the funder in brief points.
  2. Make it easy for them to give you the money by using their language. In addition to the application forms and guidelines that shape your writing, be sure to take time to read annual reports, strategic planning and online copy from your potential funding body. As you read, highlight (or electronically extract if possible) the prose in their documents that resonate powerfully with what you do or are proposing. Put this in your “fodder” file. Organizing your argument under sub-headings that echo their goals and priorities, using their language makes it easy for funders to see where your activities and plans fit their funding priorities. I worked with one great grantwriter who called this, “finding the money words”.
  3. Tell your positive story first. Find several key points in each section that are strong positives. Put them upfront and in strong brief language. Use quotes from stakeholders, partners and leaders to enliven and add credibility.
  4. Address negatives briefly and honestly – move quickly to your positive plans (the only exception to this is applications for organizational effectiveness projects where you are making a case for the needs of your org.)
  5. Keep to length guidelines: Find out how flexible your funding body is in length guidelines. If they have some flexibility, don’t abuse them. Sometimes copy from one question might be adapted and moved to another question that allows for a more lengthy response.
  6. Have you hit all your high notes? Look back at your list from No. 1. In your edits and moving blocks of copy around have you failed to tell some of your positive stories? See where you can fit those missed notes back in.

If you follow all these steps you will maximize your success with funders. Remember that the funders want to give you the money but you have to show them why and how your activities are the best place that they can invest in order to achieve their goals.

CONCLUDING THOUGHTS:

  • Be honest: Any dishonesty or misrepresentation in your application will assure you have a very short relationship with the funder, so you want to be sure that you’ll deliver on everything you have outlined. Fudging on postage dates is mail fraud, unfair to your colleagues and creates a nasty, unethical climate in organizations where leaders coerce staff into going along with submitting applications days after deadline with an old postage meter label. Expose this where it occurs. If extensions are needed due to dire circumstances, often there is a way to submit a barebones application with additional material coming as updates.
  • Don’t forget to file your reports. A part of successful grantwriting is filing reports as required. Since you are reporting on last year’s activities anyway, send reports even to those funders that don’t require them.
  • Recognize your funders: assure that funders have the logo recognition and thanks that meets or exceeds the funder’s expectations. Forgetting the Canada Council logo on your program book today, means you will not want to send that program to them with your next application, no matter how good it looks. When logos and thanks are part of your development team plan, meeting your final requirements and giving courteous acknowledgement is assured
Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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Rally to save the CBC Orchestra

HUGE RALLY TO SAVE CBC RADIO ORCHESTRA
SUNDAY APRIL 20 AT 2 P.M. AT THE CHAN CENTRE AT UBC

Wednesday April 16, 2008 … Standing on guard for the CBC Radio Orchestra, April 20 at 2:00 pm CBC Radio Two listeners are following up on last week’s successful staging of a coast to coast National Day Of Action to demand CBC brass back down on their apparent systematic destruction of the Radio 2 network and their decision to replace it with programming completely foreign to its core audiences. The rally Sunday is a call to the CBC Board and Management to restore the CBC Radio Orchestra within a revitalized CBC Radio Two.

The rally on Sunday starting at 2:00 pm is an hour before the orchestra’s regularly scheduled, and nearly sold-out, performance at 3:00 pm.

The natural amphitheatre at the Chan entrance is a dramatic location, which will accommodate an impressive number of supporters, while allowing the 1,200 concert-goers easy access.

“It’s not the usual sort of prelude to an afternoon of live music at the Chan” said Canadian Music Centre head Colin Miles. “This situation has become a flashpoint for the general downgrading of CBC by the people who have been entrusted with our precious public broadcasting system.”

“We are seeing the end of a cultural treasure that serves Canadians coast to coast and is an essential player in our musical exports to the world. Elimination of the CBC Orchestra is the destruction of our ability to tell our stories. It amounts to censorship and stifling of free expression of our composers” he stated.

“At 2 cents per year per person, how can CBC management, the board and Parliament agree to this? The issue has now been raised on the floor of the House of Commons and we will be keeping the pressure up.” added Colin Miles.

Three years ago CBC management stopped the CBC Orchestra from working in the studio to record music for broadcast and CDs and told they could only give public performances. Renting concert halls and paying for publicity to promote concerts is expensive. This orchestra has a recording studio that was built for them and well trained creative producer, recording engineer and orchestra librarian on staff. CBC management needs to be reminded what power in creating programming they have by keeping their orchestra. We are calling on CBC to restore the orchestra and get the musicians back into the studio to do what they do best for the benefit of all of Canada. As the CBC Radio Orchestra’s own webpage states “With an audience as diverse as the Canadian experience, we create engaging musical radio programs, commission and perform new works as well as established classics, and showcase exceptional Canadian performers and conductors.”

Rally organized by:
Save the CBC Orchestra Committee
Based in Vancouver, Reaching Across the Country

For more information:
Joan Athey 250-294-6040 to April 18; 604-908-9124 April 18, 19 & 20.
Laurie Townsend 604-822-9161
www.StandOnGuardforCBC.ca

Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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CBC changes–Letter from the President of the Canadian League of Composers

published with permission of the author:

Dear members of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage,

I am writing to you as President of the Canadian League of Composers, and request that you enforce the Broadcast Act of 1991 with regard to CBC radio.

Recent changes in CBC’s broadcasts diminish the long-standing working relationship between Canadian composers of concert music and the CBC, as well as their required commitment as public broadcaster to provide rich, original content that reflects the diversity of Canada.

You may refer to my report on the meeting I had with CBC Senior Management <http://www.stopcbcpop.ca/CBC_New%20Music_Dec05.htm>.

Please note the lack of commitment to the Canadian Music composed by our membership of 400 composers (which, when added with the Canadian Music Centre’s Associate Composers equals 1000 artists).

Most importantly, recent changes at CBC Radio Two meant the cancellation of Two New Hours, the only program dedicated to Canadian Art Music. It had a devoted and plentiful following, and its loss is devastating to our field. Moving more closely to the commercial broadcasting category of “Adult Contemporary”. the CBC begins to emulate commercial radio, counter to its mandate as a culture-driven–not numbers-driven broadcaster. Radio One’s programs Freestyle and The National Playlist are two recent examples of the move to commercialism prior to the recent changes at Radio Two.

Significantly, Canada was instrumental in formulating and signing a recent UNESCO act pledging to support and respect diversity of creation in all its forms. In making the current changes, we feel that the CBC is, by including content available on commercial radio, reducing the diversity of public broadcasting. Canadian poets, scientists, writers, composers, etc. are losing their place on Canadian Public Radio, and we request that the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage carefully review and enforce the CBC mandated role in our culture.

Unfortunately, as stakeholders in the CBC, we were not informed of this meeting, and are therefore unable to arrange our presence on such short notice, but as president of the organization representing Canadian Composers, I represent to you the collective views and concerns of our membership.

Sincerely,

Dr. Paul Steenhuisen

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Bread and Roses Life, L. Rogers
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