Greater Haverhill Arts and Culture Receive State Boost

The Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC) today approved a spending plan for the year that began July 1. It invests more than $10 million in nonprofit arts, humanities, and science organizations; local cultural councils; education and youth programs; and working artists across the commonwealth.

Local cultural councils will share $2.76 million—about $100,000 more than last year. While current allocations have not yet been announced, last year Haverhill received $20,660; Methuen, $14,020; and Andover, $4,720. The councils support local arts and history, fund school field trips and sponsor local concerts and exhibitions. MCC’s Adams Arts Creative Economy Programs will receive $814,250 statewide. Last year, the Haverhill Riverfront Cultural District was created with a $50,000 grant, while the Creative Haverhill program received $10,000.

“I’m thrilled to announce this latest round of investments in the Massachusetts nonprofit cultural sector,” said MCC Executive Director Anita Walker.

MCC's spending plan benefited from a $1 million increase to its state appropriation, approved by the legislature and signed by Governor Deval Patrick in July. The MCC board also voted unanimously to approve the plan and designated the new Boston Literary Cultural District.

Besides local cultural councils and Adams Grant recipients, MCC also plans to sponsor and support the following programs.

Nonprofit Cultural Organizations: $4.2 million—The Cultural Investment Portfolio comprises 389 nonprofit arts, humanities, and science organizations across Massachusetts. These organizations connect children and adults to theatre, music, visual arts, and film; teach them about history, literature, and the natural environment; and introduce them to new languages and cultures. Cultural Investment Portfolio grants must be matched one to one, and range from $2,500 to $55,500.

Creative Youth Development: $1.5 million—MCC is committed to supporting and advocating for the arts as a vehicle for social change.  Creative youth development celebrates the capacity of art making to be a vehicle for change in the lives of young people and their communities.

The YouthReach Initiative—Grants to cultural and community-based organizations to support in-depth arts, humanities, and science programs for young people at risk.

Community Music Program—A new program to support a growing number of intensive, ensemble-based music programs that use music as a vehicle for youth development and social change. Through grants, technical assistance and project support the MCC will foster this emerging field of music making in the commonwealth.

STARS Residencies support creative learning residencies in schools of three days or more in the arts, sciences and humanities.

Big Yellow School Bus provides grants to help schools meet the transportation costs of educational field trips to cultural institutions in Massachusetts.

Poetry Out Loud is a national competition in which high school students memorize and perform poetry real poems and explore the dynamic aspects of slam poetry, spoken work and theater in their English and drama classes. Over 10 years the Huntington Theatre Co. has expanded this program to include more than 50,000 Massachusetts students.

UP Accessibility Program: $125,000—UP will support the growth and development of organizations that recognize the power of inclusive design to grow audiences and enhance cultural experiences for all, and that embrace inclusivity as core to their mission. A formal announcement including full details about this new MCC initiative will be released in September.

Artists: $366,000—MCC will recognize the unique contribution made by artists to the cultural vitality of the commonwealth through Artist Fellowships.

Humanities: $452,931—MCC provides an annual partnership grant to Mass Humanities, which supports public programs in history, literature and other humanities disciplines to enhance and improve civic life.

New England Foundation for the Arts: $50,000—The MCC continues its partnership with the New England Foundation for the Arts collaborating on mutually supportive activities that serve the citizens of Massachusetts and give Massachusetts artists, presenters and communities opportunities to benefit from programs that serve the six New England states and beyond.

This fall MCC will re-launch Creative Minds/Creative Communities—A series of receptions across the commonwealth to celebrate this newest round of investments.