Pursuing a career in the creative or cultural sector can be fraught with challenges. It's not uncommon for individuals emerging in their careers to live from paycheck to paycheck, making it difficult to establish any type of substantial financial safety net. Those who operate in the gig economy aren't guaranteed the comfort of a steady paycheck, which means their monthly income often fluctuates. These conditions can make it extremely hard for individuals in the sector to be adequately prepared when an emergency strikes.
Through Erie Arts & Culture's newly formed Emergency Financial Assistance Fund, creative and cultural professionals, which includes artists of all disciplines, who have experienced a disruption to their income stream can request up to $500 in assistance from Erie Arts & Culture. Awarded funds can be used to assist with basic living expenses, such as housing, utilities, or groceries. The objective is to provide financial support in moments of crisis to those in the sector who are experiencing financial hardship. This fund is made possible through generous donor contributions to the Erie Arts Endowment and support from Arundel Cellars & Brewing Company.
To be approved for assistance, individuals must meet three key criteria.
1. Demonstrate that they are a creative or cultural professional
2. Demonstrate that they have experienced a disruption to their income stream
3. Demonstrate a need for assistance
Award amounts range from $150 to assist with groceries to $500 to assist with rent.
The next round of funding through the Emergency Financial Assistance Fund will resume after January 1, 2021. In the meantime, if you have an emergency that requires immediate attention, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.