Why We Need a Cultural Artists Plan For Emergencies (CAPE)

The LSPU Hall has offered many CAPE fundraisers over the years, as well as assisting visiting and local productions fundraise for the fund through their ticket sales.

The LSPU Hall has offered many CAPE fundraisers over the years, as well as assisting visiting and local productions fundraise for the fund through their ticket sales.

 

Sometimes life throws a few hurdles at you, and when you’re in the middle of creating your art, the results can be devastating to your career.

Never mind that, without the benefits of traditional careers, there’s a good chance you have no idea who to turn to for help.

That’s why the Cultural Artists Plan for Emergencies (CAPE) Fund was created in 2005 with help from ACTRA Newfoundland. Since then, it’s become a lifeline for artists in Newfoundland and Labrador who find themselves in unexpected crisis situation.

If you work in culture, arts, and entertainment within the province you are able to apply for this one-time mean of support if you need it.

It all came about after a difficult year full of tragedies for the Newfoundland and Labrador arts community, where artists needing immediate assistance found themselves without aid. And, of course, help wasn’t easily available.

As artists, we know that our livelihood can fluctuate from month to month, or even day to day. Things can often be unstable; after all, most artists don’t seek an artistic path to gain riches.

So when things get really, really bad, how do we recover? What do we have to fall back on?

Since 2005, the fund has provided over $60,000 in funding to artists of all backgrounds (theatre, music, film, visual art, literature). If it’s a major catastrophic event or a medical issue requiring immediate assistance, artists can be sure their application is handled confidentially and quickly. Artists can sometimes receive cheques as quickly as 48 hours.

Why is all of this important? CAPE allows professional artists to emerge from a crisis with dignity and confidence. Without this kind of aid, we could be stifling the voices of so many artists within Newfoundland and Labrador.

But CAPE needs help, too.

In 2016, six applications came to CAPE and now funding is depleting. You can donate directly to the fund. All productions at the LSPU Hall (Resource Centre for the Arts) also offer the choice to opt-in to adding 50 cents to each ticket to be donated to the CAPE fund. If you are hosting an event here, please consider this easy way to help give back. You can also contact CAPE with other means of fundraising support. The arts community thanks you!

Big thanks to all those who have already donated and expressed their support for CAPE!

Candice Walsh