5 December 2020 The Irish Film & Television Network
Significant stimulus supports and grants for the Arts announced by Minster Catherine Martin
24 Jul 2020 : Nathan Griffin
Minister Catherine Martin
The department for Media, Tourism, Arts, Culture, Sports, and Gaeltacht has announced a range of support and grants to aid the arts and culture sector, which has been significantly hit in recent months in light of the ongoing Corona Virus pandemic.

In a statement issued by the department today, Minister Martin said “Ireland’s unique Arts and Culture set us apart in the world; our creative strengths form the basis of our national identity and are central to our unique high global reputation.  These sectors have taken a very particular hit as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic; cultural venues and events were among the first to be closed in the country’s public health response to the crisis, and they will be among the last to recover; restrictions on social distancing and on gatherings are likely to have long terms impacts on performances, displays, festivals and concerts.”

The Jobs Stimulus package is said to have specifically addressed these matters.  Back in June, the Government made an additional €25 million available to support cultural activities, including bursaries and commissions, resources for museums and culture workers, both through the Arts Council (€20 million) and directly through my Department (€5 million). 

The Stimulus package now has further, new measures to support and nurture this important sector through these difficult times.

The culture and audio visual sectors will benefit from a new €10 million pilot “Performance and Production Support Package” to support the live performance and the audiovisual production sector. Under this funding package, an audiovisual scheme will be put in place to assist the film and TV drama sector. These pilot schemes will be designed in consultation with the sectors, and aim to build confidence in recommencing production, rehearsals, and event planning now for the months ahead.    

A further €2 million will also be available for the next round Sound and Vision for the audiovisual sector.   Broadcasting has played a vital role in providing reliable news and information to citizens throughout the COVID-19 crisis, and in bringing together local communities.   The additional funding to this sector comes on top of other supports made this year totalling €13.2m.  A €3 million TV Drama Fund administered by Screen Ireland will support the production of new Irish TV drama content in line with the Government’s Audiovisual Action Plan, and will grow the sector, firmly placing creativity at the centre of Irish government policy. 

“In line with the commitment made in the Programme for Government, I will be progressing a new multi-disciplinary task force to protect and sustain the arts and culture sector through the pandemic,” said Minister Martin.

“The additional monies allocated in this Jobs Stimulus package bring the Arts Council’s total allocation this year to €105 – some 40% higher than in 2019.

“A key objective of this funding is to provide enhanced support for freelance artists and arts workers who have been impacted severely by COVID-19. 

“The stimulus measures will create more opportunities for paid creative and cultural activity, including through increased support for the Arts Council, TV drama production, live performance, and specific measures targeted at musicians.”

Click here for the full announcement.

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