The Arts Council of Northern Ireland recognises the significant challenges of the fast-changing COVID-19 situation and the impact it is having on an already hard-pressed arts sector. Our Arts Officers and Assistants are currently talking to arts organisations and later today, we have arranged a meeting with the Department for Communities to assess what additional support might be offered to the arts sector in order to come through this crisis and continue to deliver the great benefits you provide to our wider community. We are currently considering revising our current grant administration requirements to alleviate some of the burden facing you; please refer to our website – http://www.artscouncil-ni.org/.
Please be assured that all of Arts Councils currently funded programmes will be delivered where possible. Arts Council are working with each individual organisation to assess the impact on your work and on that of individual artists as this public health emergency unfolds over the coming months.
Some have been asking whether they should cancel planned shows, events and activities, however these are matters for individual boards and each will have to take those difficult decisions. The Arts Council realises the financial implications for you concerning income particularly for individual artists, whose already precarious earnings are likely to be further affected by the situation.
Please look out for updates in the coming days and weeks and please do keep in touch by email with your arts officer. http://artscouncil-ni.org/contact-us.