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 In This Issue:

September 2019

Message from the Executive Director 
How people were helped: August 2019
News: The AFC welcomes new leadership
Financial Wellness Month: November 2019
Support The AFC this theatre season
From our Community: Rendezvous with Madness Festival

Message from the Executive Director

Dear Friends,

It has been an eventful few days.

Last week at this time, I was in Winnipeg visiting many of our supporters in the theatre community, representatives of Directors Guild of Canada and ACTRA and, of course, catching up with our many friends and partners in the IATSE at their annual Canadian convention.

The location of this year’s convention was chosen in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the Winnipeg General Strike, an event that that brought working people from disparate backgrounds together in the streets to show their power: shutting down the city when they mobilized under the banner of a just cause.

This past Wednesday I attended a meeting of colleagues gathered to work on the issue of income precarity for artists. At the end of our wide-ranging discussion about systemic obstacles to artists’ ability to earn a sustainable living from their work, we concluded that the way forward might lie in creative practitioners finding solidarity and greater economic stability through creating their own institutions to serve their common needs.

Later, I had the privilege and pleasure of being in the presence of some very distinguished Canadians, including the writer Adam Gopnik and General Roméo Dallaire, both of whom spoke during the excellent 6 Degrees event organized by the Institute for Canadian Citizenship in Toronto. Though each came to it from a different perspective, both emphasized the necessity of citizen engagement in strengthening and preserving the sometimes fragile institutions and conventions that are all that lie between a society founded on just laws and respect for human rights and a brutal tyranny in which all our worst impulses are given free rein.

This is the week of Global Climate Strikes. In Canada, we are in the midst of a federal election campaign. Elsewhere, people of good will struggle to find ways to restore moral order when, instead of wise leadership, they are offered an unceasing cascade of insults and indignities.

There are many others who have written much more eloquently on the place that artistic work has in exploring the human condition, giving us the courage to face hard truths and opening us to the possibility of identifying with others who at first seemed to be so unlike ourselves.

But simply put, my own experience living and working among artists and being enriched by their work tells me that we need each other.

Civic life and artistic work each require some degree of collective action. Even the writers and composers among us who work in isolation require the involvement of others who are aligned with their vision and who act in concert in order to see that vision fully realized. And in many instances, the artistic process culminates in the collective experience of a performance or exhibition of a work for an audience.

Art does not get made passively and absolutely nothing is achieved by apathy. Positive action is required and there has never been a better time for artists to show their power as citizens of the world. Create together, produce together, perform together, and unite for change. March together. And – when and where you are eligible – Vote. See you on the streets, in the seats, and at the polls.

Thank you for caring (and for doing something about it), 

David Hope
Executive Director

How people were helped: August 2019

Last month, your support helped us distribute $29,432.48 in emergency funding to arts and entertainment professionals facing crisis situations. Here's how people were helped:

  • $18,975.95 to help keep a roof over people’s heads
  • $3,650.00 for groceries and other necessities
  • $570.72 to cover utilities
  • $4,149.97 for travel and transportation
  • $843.77 to keep the phone and internet connected
  • $527.07 for emergency dental and medical care
  • $715.00 to cover other expenses, like child care, union dues, moving & storage, funeral expenses, etc.

News: The AFC welcomes new Leadership

The AFC announces the election of Board Member Deborah Bernstein as President of the Board, Board Member Adrian MacDonald as Vice-President, and the appointment of new members Ryan Goldhar, Alan Goluboff, and Hari Krishnan. Gerard Roxburgh will remain a member of The AFC Board as Past President, and Barbara Gordon joins the Executive Committee as Secretary.

“We extend the warmest welcome to our new board members: Alan, Hari, and Ryan. Your diverse expertise and your deep commitment to promoting a healthy, creative, and sustainable arts and entertainment industry in Canada will be invaluable in supporting the work of The AFC. I hope your experience on this board will be enriching and inspiring,” said Deborah Bernstein.

The AFC would like to thank our outgoing board members Jan Miller, Prem Gill, Zaib Shaikh, Fiona Reid, C.M., D.C.L., and Sugith Varughese for their dedicated service. “Our outgoing members were uniformly outstanding in their service to the organization. During their time on the board Jan, Prem, Sugith, and Zaib were strong advocates for The AFC in the film & television community, providing thoughtful industry insights and considered advice about the growth and future of The AFC. Sugith, in particular, made many valuable contributions in the areas of finance and policy and ably steered the golf committee towards greater success each year,” Gerard Roxburgh said.

“We are, of course, greatly indebted to Fiona for her years of dedicated and visionary leadership of the organization as President, then as Past President through our rebranding as The AFC, and for her instrumental role in the birth of our Financial Wellness Program,” Roxburgh added. 

Click here to read the full announcement

Financial Wellness Month: November 2019

Free financial wellness workshops for artists and creatives in 6 cities across Canada

Financial planner and opera singer Chris Enns takes his “How to Connect with Money when You’re a Creative Person” workshop across Canada in November 2019 as part of the Financial Wellness Month series organized by The AFC and the Dancer Transition Resource Centre.

  • November 7, 4:15 PM | The Dance Centre | Vancouver
  • November 12, 7 PM | Calgary Arts Development | Calgary
  • November 14, 7 PM | Creative Manitoba | Winnipeg
  • November 15, 6 PM | Dance Saskatchewan | Saskatoon
  • November 18, 11:30 AM | DANSpace | Halifax
  • November 19, 6 PM | The AFC | Toronto

Finance often feels like a different language to many artists and people who work in the creative fields. It can be difficult to connect with money when faced with complications of variable income, multiple income streams, and non-traditional financial values. In these workshops, Chris Enns will talk about:

  • Setting financial goals
  • Mapping the cost of your life and figuring out irregular expenses
  • How to separate your business and personal life
  • How to manage variable income
  • The fundamentals of tax: what you need to know as a self-employed person
  • What tools can help manage your money

The workshops are FREE to attend! Attendance is by registration only - spots are limited. Click here to find out more and register today.

Support The AFC this theatre season

The new theatre season is here - we love hearing about the bold, exciting productions kicking off new season programming in theatres across the country!

The live performance and theatre community have been great supporters of The AFC's work, raising funds through audience collections, benefit performances, opening night donations, and other efforts for the last six decades. Today, we want to say THANK YOU and BRAVO to every single member of the theatre community who has raised funds, donated, helped spread the word, and more. Your support empowers and enables us to provide emergency assistance and crucial services to Canadian arts and entertainment professionals. 

Happy new theatre season! We hope it brings interesting discoveries, new names, ground-breaking work, and - of course - we hope more Canadian theatremakers will be able to join in the efforts to raise funds for The AFC! Here are just some of the ways you can get involved:

Head over to our website to find out about other ways to get involved and to donate! 

From our Community: Rendezvous with Madness Festival

The Rendezvous with Madness Festival is the first and largest mental health festival in the world and presents local, national and international work exploring themes of mental health and addiction issues.

The full programming line-up for the 27th annual Rendezvous With Madness Festival is now available! Opening on World Mental Health Day, the Festival runs October 10-20, 2019 and showcases 14 feature films from around the globe, 5 live performances (including a stand-up comedy showcase - a festival first!), and a visual and media arts exhibition. Tickets are now on sale – visit for details. 

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