The Ocean County Artists Guild (the Guild) takes great pride in being one of the first arts organizations in Ocean County to reopen during the pandemic in September 2020. Having our own building and not subject to the same restrictions as other organizations, we were able to provide in-person, hands-on art experiences in a safe environment.
We invested in technology that helped us deliver instruction safely. We witnessed first-hand the impact providing in-person art experiences had on all ages, from children, to at-risk youth, to the elderly living alone. We were there for our community when they needed us most. We provided the soft, safe space they needed to land for human connection. As a result, they not only survived but thrived at a time when life seemed so uncertain and hopeless. People need people and also a place to gather. The Guild continues to provide that and would greatly appreciate the additional funds that will help us continue to grow artists, art, and art lovers in Ocean County and beyond! Thank you!
Contact the Ocean County Artists Guild for information on Sponsorships at email@example.com
10 Reasons to Support the Arts in 2022
By Randy I. Cohen, Vice President of Research and Policy for the American for the Arts.
The arts are fundamental to our humanity. They ennoble and inspire us—fostering creativity, empathy, and beauty. The arts also strengthen our communities socially, educationally, and economically—benefits that persist even during a pandemic that has been devastating to the arts. The following ten reasons show why an investment in artists and arts organizations is vital to the nation’s post-pandemic healing and recovery.
- Arts unify communities. 72% of Americans believe “the arts unify our communities regardless of age, race, and ethnicity” and 73% agree that the arts “helps me understand other cultures better”—a perspective observed across all demographic and economic categories.
- Arts improve individual well-being. 81% of the population says the arts are a “positive experience in a troubled world,” 69% of the population believe the arts “lift me up beyond everyday experiences,” and 73% feel the arts give them “pure pleasure to experience and participate in.”
- Arts strengthen the economy. The nation’s arts and culture sector—nonprofit, commercial, education—is an $919.7 billion industry that supports 5.2 million jobs. That is 4.3% of the nation’s economy—a larger share of GDP than powerhouse sectors such as agriculture, transportation, and construction. The arts have a $33 billion international trade surplus. The arts also accelerate economic recovery: a growth in arts employment has a positive and causal effect on overall employment.
- Arts drive tourism and revenue to local businesses. The nonprofit arts industry alone generates $166.3 billion in economic activity annually—spending by organizations and their audiences—which supports 4.6 million jobs and generates $27.5 billion in government revenue. Arts attendees spend $31.47 per person, per event, beyond the cost of admission on items such as meals, parking, and lodging—vital income for local businesses. Arts travelers are ideal tourists, staying longer and spending more to seek out authentic culture experiences.
- Arts improve academic performance. Students engaged in arts learning have higher GPAs, standardized test scores, and college-going rates as well as lower drop-out rates. These academic benefits are reaped by students across all socio-economic strata. Yet, the Department of Education reports that access to arts education for students of color is significantly lower than for their white peers. 91% of Americans believe that arts are part of a well-rounded K-12 education.
- Arts spark creativity and innovation. Creativity is among the top five applied skills sought by business leaders—per the Conference Board’s Ready to Innovate report—with 72% saying creativity is of “high importance” when hiring. Research on creativity shows that Nobel laureates in the sciences are 17 times more likely to be actively engaged as an arts maker than other scientists.
- Arts have social impact. University of Pennsylvania researchers have demonstrated that a high concentration of the arts in a city leads to higher civic engagement, more social cohesion, higher child welfare, and lower poverty rates.
- Arts improve healthcare. Nearly one-half of the nation’s healthcare institutions provide arts programming for patients, families, and even staff. 78% deliver these programs because of their healing benefits to patients—shorter hospital stays, better pain management, and less medication.
- Arts for the health and well-being of our military. The arts heal the mental, physical, and moral injuries of war for military servicemembers and Veterans, who rank the creative arts therapies in the top four (out of 40) interventions and treatments. Across the military continuum, the arts promote resilience during pre-deployment, and the reintegration of military servicemembers, Veterans, their families, and caregivers into communities.
- Arts Strengthen Mental Health. The arts are an effective resource in reducing depression and anxiety and increasing life satisfaction. Just 30 minutes of active arts activities daily can combat the ill effects of isolation and loneliness associated with COVID-19.