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Creative Waco to receive $250,000 grant to support local arts initiatives

Creative Waco is one of only four Texas cities selected to receive a grant from National Endowment for the Arts to be regranted locally.

WACO, Texas — Creative Waco is one of only four Texas cities to be selected to receive the $250,000 National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) grant that supports local arts initiatives in pandemic recovery, according to Creative Waco. 

“This grant is a game changer for Waco at exactly the time we need it”, says Fiona Bond, Executive Director of Creative Waco. “It will inspire arts initiatives that benefit and connect our whole community. Cities our size have a unique role to play in post-pandemic recovery.  The very fact that we were one of only a handful of mid-sized cities across the nation selected for this program puts Waco in the cultural limelight.”

The local arts agency exists to grow and support the artistic and cultural life of Waco, according to the news release.

“The NEA’s significant investment in local arts agencies, including Creative Waco is a key element in helping the arts and culture sector recover and reopen, while ensuring that that American Rescue Plan funding is distributed equitably,” said Ann Eilers, NEA’s acting chair. “These grants recognize the vital role of local arts agencies and will allow them to help rebuild local economies and contribute to the well-being of our communities.”

Creative Waco is one of 66 arts agencies across all 50 states awarded the American Rescue Plan grant. This grant is among the $20,200,000 being awarded nationwide, per the news release. 

$200,000 is available for regranting across 2 years, while $50,000 will support training, administration, research and reporting requirements of the program.

According to the Creative Waco, they plan to use this funding to provide grants for arts initiatives that:

  • Reach, include, and benefit traditionally underrepresented communities
  • Facilitate post-pandemic recovery (social, economic, and/or educational)
  • Connect diverse people and spark healing, understanding, joy or kindness
  • Develop, support, or retain outstanding artistic talent

Any McLennan County-based organization or initiative with arts and culture as part of their mission will be eligible for funding, but grants must result in the generation of new artistic work or programs. The application process is scheduled to be launched in early 2022.

The other Texas cities selected to receive NEA regranting awards were Austin, Dallas and El Paso.

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