LOCAL CULTURAL COUNCILS
FAIRHAVEN CULTURAL COUNCIL &
NEW BEDFORD CULTURAL COUNCIL
JULY 26 2023
IN-FOCUS ARTICLE: An Opportunity to Learn About Your Local Cultural Councils
If you’re an artist living and working in the South Coast communities of Fairhaven or New Bedford, Massachusetts, this is a good time to get to know about your Local Cultural Council (LCC). LCCs are managed by volunteers in your community. Some are practicing artists. Some are not. Some are art industry professionals. Some are just art lovers!
Local Cultural Council members serve their respective communities. They have an interest in and support the arts, humanities, and/or sciences of the individuals, organizations, and institutions of their creative community. Diversity is more than a catchword and it means many things. The more diverse your Local Cultural Council is, the better it can serve its representative membership. Anyone may apply to join. You can assist with the Council’s duties as strictly a member or offer your time and energy as an officer. Officers are generally re-elected annually, but it may vary from council to council.
Both councils need volunteer members. Council members generally meet in person or via Zoom an average of four times a year. Right now, the focus of this article is solely on the Fairhaven and New Bedford Cultural Councils for two reasons. First, both councils need members. For individual artists, this is a perfect opportunity to join. Why? Because, as a council member, you will get first-hand knowledge of how your council works. And yes, you can still apply for a grant as a council member or council officer. How? Simple, at the appropriate time, when your application comes up for review and a vote, you just recuse yourself.
What skills and talents are both councils seeking? Artists and non-artists with computer, internet, and social media skills. Those with finance and marketing skills are also encouraged to join. And, to assure that the council reflects the diversity of the creative community it serves, the councils seek members who want to assure that their community or interests are best represented.
Still not sure, visit a scheduled meeting (posted on each council’s Facebook pages) and ask the members what they have gotten out of serving on the Council. More than likely, you’ll learn that the members have an interest in the cultural life of their community and believe that the arts enhance the quality of life of residents. Attend a scheduled project that has been identified as being funded by the Mass Cultural Council through the efforts of its local council and speak with the presenter or organizer.
Second, the purpose of this article is to give you a heads-up that the new Local Cultural Council grant cycle will begin on September 1 and close on October 19. So, it’s a great time to join your local council and learn how it works. Volunteer your time and talent and applying for a grant may benefit you! Remember, the Mass Cultural Council and its local councils work hand in hand to elevate the state’s rich culture and quality of life.
Ready to be a part of improving how we all live, work, and play while assisting your fellow council members in amplifying your represented community’s creativity, helping with funding and resources, expanding relationships, and involving yourself in needed transformational changes to better maintain and grow your creative community? Contact your Local Cultural Council today!
DISCLAIMER: Ron Fortier is a member of the New Bedford Cultural Council, the Fairhaven Cultural Council Chair, and a past grantee as both an individual artist and as the co-founder of The Artists Index.
MASS CULTURAL COUNCIL:
FAIRHAVEN CULTURAL COUNCIL:
NEW BEDFORD CULTURAL COUNCIL:
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