Anchor Investor with announcement of Shaping Tomorrow Grant
Erie Arts & Culture received a Shaping Tomorrow Grant from the Erie Community Foundation on Tuesday, April 8th to launch Erie Arts & Culture as the backbone organization for arts & culture in our region. The Shaping Tomorrow Grant in the amount of $238,959 will be distributed over a three year period; this grant will help Erie Arts & Culture achieve its strategic goals as outlined in the recent merger with the Erie Downtown Arts & Culture Coalition.
“Over the last two years, we engaged our Partners and volunteers to help assess how we could best serve the Erie Region through the advancement of arts and culture. We incorporated their feedback into strategic goals that are shaping the future of Erie Arts & Culture. The Erie Community Foundation’s investment breathes life into this work and is a reflection of their commitment to strengthening the vibrancy and vitality of the Erie Region” says Amanda Brown Sissem, Executive Director of Erie Arts & Culture.
Erie Community Foundation support will be used to consolidate the organization’s multiple websites, introduce online grantmaking tools, and provide capacity-building resources to partners/members with a priority on measuring impact. Additionally, the Shaping Tomorrow grant will enhance annual support to partner organizations and arts and cultural projects in Erie County, and aid in the development of a collaborative endowment-building strategy and marketing tools in partnership with the Erie Community Foundation.
With this grant, the Erie Community Foundation becomes the second Anchor Investor for Erie Arts & Culture. New to Erie Arts & Culture in 2014, Anchor Investors are businesses, corporations, government agencies, foundations or individuals contributing at a leadership level and pledging to give at the same or a progressive level for multiple years. The Erie Community Foundation joins the first Anchor Investor Erie Insurance Group who made a recent pledge of up to $380,000 over the next three years.
“The ‘Anchor Investor’ concept is based on the desire to create a greater impact for the general public by uniting major donors and providers to think strategically about the health and impact of arts and culture as community assets,” says Sissem. “Multi-year commitments create stability by allowing both arts and cultural providers and the investors to plan their budgets and shift focus from solicitations to evaluating and understanding the impact of the investment.”
Research shows that arts and cultural activities help to increase educational achievement, inspire health and healing, attract a creative workforce/businesses, engage and connect people and build vibrant neighborhoods. “These are all relevant conversations in the Erie Region but creating a real impact on these issues takes a dedication of time and resources,” Sissem adds. “The Anchor Investor helps encourage providers of arts and culture to enter these conversations knowing they will have support for a timeframe necessary to make a difference. We are extremely encouraged by the commitment of the Erie Community Foundation to work with us to achieve these goals.”