COVID-19 has had an immediate and massive impact on artists’ livelihoods and will continue to have impacts as we gradually emerge.

Here at Guelph Arts Council we know that the arts are essential to the well-being of Guelph’s residents, and contribute to Guelph’s renown as a vibrant place to live and visit. The pandemic has demonstrated the value of the arts as people turn to artists for comfort, insights, entertainment and learning. 

Since the pandemic began, across Canada, over 1,000 artists have responded to a national survey organized by They report an average loss of 35 gigs and over $25,000 in income. Artists are at risk.   

2020 Fundraiser Small
Artwork by Barbara Salsberg Mathews

Now more than ever, Guelph Arts Council - thanks to donors like you - is supporting local artists and organizations by helping them get back on their feet, and plan for the future.

Guelph Arts Council’s COVID-19 response has included:

  • Shifting programs for artists and the public online to provide greater access to our services, resources, and artist network while connecting with broader audiences
  • Providing resources to support artists’ immediate well-being and professional transitions, including income-rebuilding strategies and networking.
  • Offering free memberships and membership services to artists, arts organizations, and arts businesses.
  •  Facilitating a mentorship program for emerging artists and launching the development of an Artist in Residence project that will elevate Indigenous artists’ voices.
  • Participating in forums like the Mayor’s Task Force on Economic Recovery.
  • Increasing our staff capacity through special projects to provide more consulting and other services to artists.
  • Launching the development of an urgently needed, coordinated, and supportive digital cultural hub for Guelph-Wellington’s arts community and audiences.
  • Removing barriers to access to Guelph Arts Council programs and services, with the goals of diversifying our artist network and ensuring inclusion.
  • Intentionally reaching out to and sharing work by diverse artists in our community so everyone feels welcome and included.

We need your help to continue our role of supporting local artists and arts groups in need and responding to the pandemic’s impacts. Your donation today will support us as the go-to hub for artists and arts workers seeking assistance and connection, arts learners seeking instruction and resources, and audiences seeking artistic works and experiences.  

Please show your support for the arts and artists in Guelph as they cope with the impact of the pandemic. Donate now  or call 519-836-3280.


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