Nov 17, 2014

Make a difference: Support the arts in your community

Dear FAC fan, visitor, patron,
You participate in and support arts and culture in our community. You know and appreciate the power they can have in creating a vibrant and thriving city. As the CEO of your Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, like you, I believe arts and culture are fundamental to a healthy and flourishing community, and I am asking for your help.

My first week on the job I met with four families whose kids had participated in our Youth Documentary Film Academy, an exciting collaborative effort between the FAC, filmmaker Tom Shepard, and other community members. Parents from each of these families thanked me for helping their child find a passion. They wanted me to know that their children had a newly-found confidence and vitality developed through the artistic expression of their stories, some of which were difficult and painful. I was amazed at the talent of these young artists and the emotive power of their films.

As a testament to the power of this program, one of these kids, Bailey Francisco, was honored in October as this year's Rising Star at the Pikes Peak Arts Council Awards!

We want to open doors of artistic expression and experience for many more in our community. We want to do more innovative programs. Unfortunately, we don’t have sufficient resources. We can only do so with your support.

Across the country, organizations like ours receive substantial portions of their funding from government sources. Last year, we received less than 1% of our funding from any public sources. That means we are uniquely and totally dependent on the generosity of individuals like you who agree that it is vital for the health of our city to have a thriving and accessible arts community.

Our Board of Trustees believes in the Fine Arts Center so strongly that they have pledged more than $100,000 of their own resources this year to our cause. And now they are issuing a challenge to the community to match that amount in our year-end campaign.

Please consider giving generously. As you reflect on your charitable giving for the year, I ask you to move the Fine Arts Center higher up on your list of priorities. Your tax-deductible gift will support our programs for at-risk youth, for children from under-resourced communities who lack arts education in their schools, and for military personnel participating in our Military Artistic Healing programs. Your gift buys art supplies and theater make-up and pays for great art exhibitions that we bring to town. And during this year-end season, you can answer the challenge from our committed Board of Trustees with your own valuable donation.

Arts and culture are good for the soul. For the soul of the individual and for the soul of the community. Join us in creating a vibrant and healthy city. Help us reach more young people like Bailey with the power and joy of art. I look forward to seeing you soon, and often, at your Fine Arts Center!
All the best,
Why the arts pay
1. True prosperity . . . The arts are fundamental to our humanity. They ennoble, inspire us and build bridges among different cultures.
2. Improved academic performance . . . Students with an education rich in the arts have higher GPAs and standardized test scores, lower drop-out rates, and better attitudes about community service.
3. Arts are an Industry . . . Nonprofit arts organizations generate $135 billion in economic activity annually, supporting 4.1 million jobs and generating $22.3 billion in government revenue.
4. Arts are good for local merchants . . . The typical arts attendee spends $24.60 per person, per event, not including the cost of admission on items such as meals, parking, and babysitters.
5. Arts are the cornerstone of tourism . . . Arts travelers are ideal tourists—they stay longer and spend more.
6. Arts are an export industry . . . U.S. exports of arts goods (e.g., movies, paintings, jewelry) grew to $64 billion in 2010, while imports were just $23 billion—a $41 billion arts trade surplus in 2010.
7. Building the 21st Century workforce . . . Creativity is among the top 5 applied skills sought by business leaders.
8. Healthcare . . . Nearly one-half of the nation’s healthcare institutions provide arts programming for patients, families, and even staff.
9. Stronger communities . . . A high concentration of the arts in a city leads to higher civic engagement, more social cohesion, higher child welfare, and lower poverty rates.
10. Creative Industries . . . 905,689 businesses in the U.S. involved in the creation or distribution of the arts that employ 3.4 million people.

SOURCE: "Top 10 Reasons to Support the Arts," 2014, Randy Cohen, Americans for the Arts

David Dahlin | President & CEO

Nov 12, 2014

FAC By the Numbers

Top 10 reasons Insert Card Final.pdf