ABO’s Brief for Pre-Budget Consultations 2022

ArtsBuild Ontario submitted a brief for the 2022 Provincial Pre-Budget Consultations calling for a permanent cultural infrastructure fund at the provincial level.

Creative spaces (like theatres, museums, galleries, etc…) are the places where arts and culture happen. Despite their importance, facilities are the most under-resourced component of arts operations. This strain was magnified throughout the pandemic with the closure and reduced operations of cultural venues across the province. With support from the Province of Ontario, arts organizations can rebuild themselves with new digital, COVID-19-safe, and sustainable infrastructure that will allow for the economic recovery of the sector. 

We suggest the following recommendations: 

Establish a permanent cultural infrastructure fund of $15-20 million annually

  • We believe that access to a provincial capital fund for cultural infrastructure is necessary for building COVID-19-safe and digitally-forward creative spaces. This investment would support the sustainability and growth of our cultural assets in Ontario.
  • Our data indicates that arts organizations in Ontario collectively need $300 million to complete current and future capital projects. 
  • We recommend coordinating with the Canada Cultural Spaces Fund, which provides matching funds at the Federal level. Many small to medium-sized organizations struggle to apply to this fund as there is no significant provincial level grant adequate to meet their needs.
  • We are thankful for the reinstatement of the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s Capital Stream – as this is the only provincial fund available for arts organizations and their capital projects. The maximum amount awarded for this grant is $150,000; however, our data demonstrates that the investment needed to adequately support creative spaces far exceeds this amount. 
  • We recommend that this fund be accessible to small to medium-sized arts organizations, to support short-term space leases (under 5 years). 
  • Lastly, arts organizations need support for digital infrastructure. Over the course of the pandemic, many developed digital methods for artistic production and presentation.  Provincial support can mobilize the arts towards a digital future alongside creative spaces with further investment.

Increase the Ontario Arts Council’s base budget to $95 million annually 

  • Many of the arts organizations and artists we serve are supported by the Ontario Arts Council (OAC). According to the Canadian Artists Representation/Le Front des artistes canadiens (CARFAC Ontario), the OAC would require a $110 million base budget in 2022 in order to remain in line with 1991 investment levels. To support the post-pandemic recovery of the arts sector, further investment in the OAC is needed.

Read the full submission here.


Call for Strategic Planning Consultant

Position: Consultant
Tentative Start Date: September 30, 2021
End Date: January 31, 2022
Location: Ontario
Position Type: Contract $6,500

Deadline to submit proposal: September 17 at 5pm.

Introduction

ArtsBuild Ontario (ABO) is the only organization in Ontario dedicated to realizing long-term solutions for building, managing and financing the sustainable arts facilities needed in Ontario’s diverse communities. We are a non-profit arts service organization that provides organizations with training, tools and resources that support the development and management of creative spaces such as theatres, galleries, concert halls, museums and other creative spaces.

ABO is seeking proposals from qualified consultants and/or consulting firms to assist in the development of a three-year comprehensive strategic plan that will focus on our network’s needs, our services, our values and our vision for the future.

ABO is an organization that is working to embed the values of individual and group differences within its working environment. We strive to embrace the diversity of backgrounds and perspectives of our staff, members, arts community, and partners. Indigenous peoples, people of colour, and people across the spectrums of gender, sexuality, age, and abilities are encouraged to apply.

Scope of Work

The consultant shall complete the following:

  • Design and execute a strategic visioning and comprehensive planning process including consultations and workshops with Board of Directors, Advisory Committee, Staff, Funders and Key Partners
  • Develop recommendations for a three-year actionable strategic plan

Anticipated Process

ABO seeks the consultant’s recommendations regarding the best process for developing the strategic plan, to be conducted in two parts:

Part 1: Vision, Strategic Directions and Research

  1. Consultations: Develop consultation framework and questions/issues for staff, advisory committee, funders and key partners.
  2. Research: Integrate related data, stakeholder strategic plans and any relevant research and best practices that compliments strategic directions and stakeholder consultations.
  3. Synthesize: Consolidate consultation feedback and research. After consultation with Board of Directors, identify strategic directions and goals.

Part 2: Write the Strategic Plan

Utilizing information from the first stage, the consultation will develop recommendations for a strategic plan. This plan will serve as ArtsBuild Ontario’s guide for the next three years.

Consultant Qualifications

To accomplish the scope requested, the consultant will need to possess the following qualifications:

  • Experience at successfully developing consensus-based strategic plans
  • Knowledgeable of collective impact or collaborative strategic initiatives
  • Strong facilitation skills
  • Knowledgeable of non-profit/charitable sector
  • Experience at creating a neutral environment for, and soliciting input from, individuals from various sectors
  • Experience at gathering and utilizing data to inform the strategic planning process
  • Knowledgeable in marketing, communications, and branding
  • Knowledgeable in resource/program development

Work Plan

The proposal should contain a detailed description of the activities to be conducted by the consultant in order to complete the requested scope of work, including:

  • Specific activities to be conducted at each stage
  • Who will be involved at each stage
  • A timeline for the activities at each stage
  • Milestones and deliverables tied to those activities
  • A proposed payment schedule

Criteria for Evaluating Success of the Project

The Board of Directors will deem this a successful project when they are given a clear report which outlines the strategic directions, areas of improvement and a recommended action plan. Previous strategic and other corporate materials will be provided to the consultant as background information upon request.

Previous Work Product

The proposal should include at least two examples of written work similar to the scope of work requested within this RFP.

Proposed Timeline

  • September 24-30, 2021: Interview process
  • September 30, 2021: Contract issued
  • October 11 – November 15, 2021: Phase One (Board retreat, Consultations and Research)
  • November 15 – December 13, 2021: Phase Two (Provide recommendations for Strategic Plan)

Please forward proposal to Alex Glass, Executive Director

Email: alex@artsbuildontario.ca

Subject line: Proposal offer: ABO Strategic Planning Consultant


November 2020 Program Updates

After a lot of work behind the scenes, ArtsBuild Ontario is happy to announce some great news about our LEARN IT | BUILD IT | MANAGE IT Workshop and Webinars, and the Creative Spaces Mentoring Network 2021-2022.

LEARN IT | BUILD IT | MANAGE IT

LEARN IT | BUILD IT | MANAGE IT (LIBIMI) began as a two-part workshop and webinar series. That covered 4 key areas that support creative space capital projects:

  • Alternative Financing
  • Community Engagement
  • Building/Renovating
  • Maintaining/Managing Creative Spaces

Part 1 began with workshops in several communities. However, as the health and safety of our participants is of the utmost importance, and in light of concerns regarding workshop attendance during the COVID-19 pandemic, ABO has decided to change these workshops into one-on-one virtual sessions to complement the part 2 webinars.

Our Virtual Consultative Sessions kick off with finishing LIBIMI Part 1! Part 1 covers the topics of Alternative Financing for Capital Projects and Engaging Community in Capital Project and will conclude with two Virtual Consultative Sessions for participants within the Cambridge area.

In these sessions, participants in and near Cambridge with a creative space project in mind will have an opportunity to sign up for a one-on-one consultation with presenters Julia Vlad and Jeremy Freiburger. Presenters will offer guidance and perspective based on their expertise and pertaining to their session topics.

Cambridge Virtual Consultative Sessions are January 12 & 19 2021. Learn more about them here, or apply for a spot here. Applications close on December 10, 2020.

We will have more information about the LIBIMI Part 2 Webinars in the coming months, so please keep a lookout for that!

Creative Spaces Mentoring Network 2021-2022

We’re happy to announce the 2021-2022 edition of the Creative Space Mentoring Network! We are now seeking mentors for current and future iterations of the Creative Spaces Mentoring Network! If you have been part of a capital project, strategic plan, or have the knowledge to share in arts management, the Creative Spaces Mentoring Network provides an opportunity for you to support fellow arts managers and foster strong arts and heritage sectors.

To support our mentors during COVID-19, ABO will provide a one-time honorarium to mentors matched with mentees for CSMN 2021-2022.

How To Apply:

If you are interested in becoming a mentor, please complete this Mentor Interest Form. If you have any questions, please contact Amy Poole, Program Manager, at amy@artsbuildontario.ca or 519-880-3670 ext. 102.

Learn more about the CSMN 2021-2022 program here and stay tuned for when we start looking for mentees!


More Capital Project Case Studies Available Now!

ArtsBuild Ontario is excited to release the second installment of case studies for The Creative Space Case Studies Series! This project features a series of case studies inspired by creative spaces across Ontario that have executed a capital project or renovation.

These case studies analyze the why, what, who, how and ongoing behind each project to provide specific details on each creative space project. This will allow other organizations to better understand what resources and supports they might need to execute projects and sustain their creative spaces.

Along with these new case studies we are also releasing a Best Practice Summary Report that combines the key elements from all case studies!

Case Studies

Canadian Automotive Museum (Oshawa, Ontario)

Dundas Valley School of Art (Dundas, Ontario)

FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre (St. Catharines, Ontario)

Great Canadian Theatre Company (Ottawa, Ontario)

  • Coming Soon!

Idea Exchange: The Old Post Office (Cambridge, Ontario)

Meridian Hall (Toronto, Ontario)

Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre/The Al Green Theatre (Toronto, Ontario)

The Theatre Centre (Toronto, Ontario)

Thunder Bay Art Gallery (Thunder Bay, Ontario)

The Westdale (Hamilton, Ontario)

Best Practice Summary

This project is made possible by the Department of Canadian Heritage.


RESCHEDULED: LEARN IT | BUILD IT | MANAGE IT Workshop in Cambridge

Based on the recommendations from the Region of Waterloo Public Health regarding COVID-19 (the coronavirus), ABO will be rescheduling the LEARN IT | BUILD IT | MANAGE IT workshop in Cambridge, which was originally to be held on Friday, March 20, 2020. All participants were issued a full refund. The NEW date and location is:

Tuesday, May 12, 2020
Cambridge Centre for the Arts
9:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
$10
Register Here

Please note that this date is subject to change based on recommendations provided by the Region of Waterloo Public Health in relation to COVID-19 (the coronavirus). We are monitoring the situation and will provide participants with updates should the date and time of the workshop change.

If you have any questions or concerns about the workshop or the new date, please email Amy Poole, Program Manager, at amy@artsbuildontario.ca.

LEARN IT | BUILD IT | MANAGE IT is supported by the Ontario Trillium Foundation and presented in partnership with the Community Forward Fund and Cobalt Connects.