Artist Relief Fund WA is seeking to boost its capacity to financially support Western Australian performing artists and arts workers currently experiencing hardship and distress.
COVID-19 has been having a devastating impact on our industry. The closure of theatres and venues to reduce its spread has seen countless performances cancelled or postponed, and thousands of people have seen sources of income they needed to get by vanish. In Western Australia, more than 55,000 artists and arts workers have been affected, losing income in excess of $21 million.
While the Government has put packages in place to support people who have lost work, targeted support for our industry has been minimal. In addition, many artists do not qualify for the support offered by programs like JobKeeper. Younger artists who live below the poverty line and subsist by working in multiple casual roles have been hit hard. Older artists, many of whom can’t retire because they weren’t able to build up enough savings, are suffering too.
Artist Relief Fund WA will support as many local artists and arts workers as we can. We will do this by offering targeted financial assistance to alleviate hardship, particularly in cases involving health or mental health emergencies, or situations where people cannot support themselves or afford necessities.
We are asking people whose lives are enriched by the live performing arts to support the people who work in them. Your donations will help pay for medical bills, counselling, or a week’s groceries. They will help us reach as many artists and arts workers as we can – actors, dancers, stage managers, crew and many others. Every dollar donated will help provide an artist with hope and the confidential support they need to make it through to the other side of this crisis.
You can find out more about Artist Relief Fund WA at artistreliefwa.org.au.