Why the Threat to the Arts Threatens Us All

Does your program teach and promote the arts?

Do you have a personal passion for the arts?

Do you have or know kids who have or could benefit from arts programs?

If you answered yes to any of these questions (which should be most of us!), someone in your world stands to be impacted by the funding risks that arts education programs and organizations are currently facing.1

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The Transformative Power of the Arts

Jonathan Herman, Executive Director of the National Guild for Community Arts Education said, “In study after study after study, an arts education has proven to be a substantial contributor to increased learning across the curriculum and to students’ emotional wellbeing.” This translates to potentially reducing poverty and crime, in short, changing lives, which has a ripple effect to us all.

Mr. Herman cited examples of powerful programs supported by public funds:

  • Project STEP provides intensive musical instruction in strings for talented minority students in Boston, as well as opportunities for them to participate in chamber music ensembles and orchestras.
  • Urban Gateways in Chicago offers arts education for the specific purpose of healing trauma in at-risk youth and providing tools for their social and emotional health.
  • Cathedral Arts Project in Jacksonville, FL, evaluates the impact of the arts on juvenile crime prevention and explores arts education for at-risk youth.
  • The Center of Creative Arts (COCA) provides free dance training for students in St. Louis Public Schools and includes an Honors Dance Program with long-term, individualized training to help students achieve their professional goals.
  • Creative Action in Austin, TX, supports teens in creating and performing original plays; transforming public spaces through murals, sculptures, and installations; and developing original filmmaking projects.

Arts Advocacy Day

In 3 weeks, you have an exciting opportunity to support your colleagues in seeking congressional support for the arts.

On Arts Advocacy DayMarch 20 and 21, more than 500 grassroots leaders from across the country will gather in Washington, D.C., to share stories with representatives from Congress about the transformative power of the arts.

The largest gathering of its kind, Arts Advocacy Day is hosted by Americans for the Arts, in partnership with more than 85 national arts organizations. The event includes the Nancy Hanks Lecture on Arts & Public Policy at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Register for the event and get these great benefits:

  • Receive expert arts advocacy training.
  • Take advantage of peer-to-peer learning and networking opportunities.
  • Support arts education policy, the charitable tax deduction, and funding for the National Endowment for the Arts.

If you can’t attend Arts Advocacy Day, now is the time to contact your local representatives to show your support and tell your own story about the power of the arts in your community.


1Americans for the Arts blog: Arts, Humanities and Public Broadcasting Funding Again at Risk