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Cleveland City Council Allocates $3 Million for Transformative Arts Projects

Updated: Dec 3, 2023

CLEVELAND, OH - In a move that will infuse Cleveland's distressed communities with a much-needed dose of artistic inspiration, the Cleveland City Council has authorized a generous allocation of $3 million in ARPA (American Rescue Plan Act) funds to spearhead transformative arts projects. This initiative aims to invigorate areas with high BIPOC populations that have been historically overlooked in terms of arts investment.

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The $3 million fund is not earmarked exclusively for murals but instead is intended to fuel a wide array of transformative arts projects. This broad approach ensures a diversity of creative expressions and endeavors, which will contribute to enriching the cultural tapestry of these communities.


Back in March, the mayor and council appointed the seven-member Transformative Arts Fund Committee. This committee, representing both the East and West sides, is entrusted with overseeing this groundbreaking initiative.


The committee members comprise a diverse group of individuals who bring a wealth of experience and unique perspectives to the table. The team includes Gina Washington, Susie Underwood, William Washington, Vince Robinson, Letitia Lopez, Gwen Garth, and Deidre McPherson.


This initiative is a testament to Cleveland City Council's commitment to leveraging art as a powerful tool for community transformation. By prioritizing investment in areas that have historically lacked arts funding, the council is taking a significant step towards fostering creativity, inclusivity, and cultural vibrancy in these communities.


Art has long been recognized as a medium that transcends barriers and promotes dialogue, understanding, and unity. This investment by the Cleveland City Council underscores the belief that everyone, regardless of their socioeconomic status or racial background, should have access to the transformative power of art.


The decision to allocate these funds is not just about beautifying communities; it's about empowering them. It's about giving voice to stories that have remained untold and providing a platform for self-expression, creativity, and change.


In the coming months, Cleveland residents can look forward to witnessing an array of innovative arts projects that will undoubtedly add color, depth, and vitality to their neighborhoods. These projects will not only transform physical spaces but also have the potential to reshape perceptions, inspire dreams, and bring communities together.


The Transformative Arts Fund Committee's work is just beginning, and it will be exciting to see the fruits of their labor as they use these funds to make a tangible difference in Cleveland's distressed communities. This is an investment in the city's future and a testament to the transformative power of art.

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