We were delighted to work in partnership with Association of Charitable Foundations and Arts Council of Northern Ireland to host our fifth annual Trusts & Foundations Symposium on 2 February 2017. The Symposium provided an opportunity for local Arts organisations to meet Trusts and Foundations on a one-to-one basis and explore the possibility of funding in the future.
Trusts attending included: BBC Children in Need, Community Foundation for Northern Ireland, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Halifax Foundation, The Paul Hamlyn Foundation, The Ireland Funds and Welcome Trust.
Speaking at the Symposium, Nick Livingston, Director of Strategic Development & Head of Policy and Research at Arts Council NI, welcomed the initiative by ACF and Arts & Business NI to bring funders and arts organisations together to learn together and from one another. Nick commended efforts being made to help the arts sector become more financially resilient, and called for both funders and arts organisations to “take a long-term view of innovation in order to avoid the risk falling into a rigidity trap”. He called for funders to “play a more entrepreneurial role in shaping that environment – they need to work closely together developing common insights into what interventions are needed as arts organisations go through cycles of change”.
Following presentations by Margaret Bolton, consultant and co-author of Socially Investing in the Arts, and Lou Errington, Grants Manager at Paul Hamlyn Foundation, and a lively panel discussion, representatives from foundation and arts organisations had the opportunity to meet individually to share ideas and learn from one another.
Having attended the Symposium, David Cahill Roots, Arts Manager at Wellcome Trust, said that he “welcomed the opportunity to participate and to have face to face conversations with potential applicants to our Public Engagement Fund – set in the context of the shared desire for building a resilient arts sector in Northern Ireland”.
Arts & Business is generously supported by The Arts Council of Northern Ireland.