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23 July, 2021

Increased funding for First Nations performing arts

A new four-year fund for emerging arts organisations will strengthen the Queensland Government’s investment in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander performing artists and companies in Queensland.

Uncle Josiah Omeenyo (Umpila Dance Leader from Lockhart) with Pryce Centre's Baiwa Kazil Youth Company. Image: Marc McCormack

Minister for the Arts Leeanne Enoch said as part of the Government’s commitment to celebrate and elevate First Nations arts in Queensland, the First Nations Pathways Fund 2022-2025, opening today, will support First Nations emerging performing arts organisations that create and present new work.

“As home to the world’s oldest continuous living cultures, we have a unique opportunity to support the growth of both Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations and culture,” Ms Enoch said.

“This new investment will also ensure audiences can experience the quality and diversity of First Nations arts and cultures, engage in truth-telling, and share Queensland’s rich history, languages, and stories.  

“Support through this fund will enable organisations to focus on their future and help deliver on Queensland’s plan for economic recovery from COVID 19, developing new work, creating jobs and new career pathways for First Nations artists and arts workers.

“The First Nations Pathways Fund was an important outcome of the Queensland Government’s Creative Together 2020 – 2030 Roadmap, and its newly-established First Nations Arts and Cultures Panel.

“First Nations organisations hold Country and culture at the core of their businesses and share stories through various art forms. That’s why the First Nations Arts and Cultures Panel has been engaged in developing this program,” Ms Enoch said.

The four-year First Nations Pathways Fund will offer $60,000 to $100,000 per annum to eligible Queensland-based First Nations organisations to support operational costs, with an additional $30,000 per annum dedicated to supporting the specific growth needs of the business.

Minister Enoch said an initial collaborative business needs analysis will be undertaken by a First Nations business consultant to support the sustainability of successful applicant organisations, and to determine the specific development needs that will best enable them to thrive.

“It is anticipated that this dedicated funding to support specific business needs, means successful recipients will develop a diverse and sustainable revenue model that delivers strong employment, programming and service delivery outcomes,” Ms Enoch said.

“This is so important for ensuring a successful and exciting future for First Nations culture and storytelling.”   

The fund closes in September with applications assessed and announced in November 2021. 

Funding through the First Nations Pathways - Performing Arts Emerging Organisations Fund 2022-2025 is to support activities from  January 1, 2022 to December 31,  2025.

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