A new community arts program is helping to fund Indigenous art projects.

Through the Indigenous Community Arts program, SK Arts and SaskCulture are offering Indigenous artists an opportunity to fund a wide variety of their projects such as art installations, TikToks, live performances, music or any other forms of artistic expression.

 “We tasked SaskCulture’s Damon Badger Heit and myself at Sask Arts to come up with a program that could answer that call but as Damon and I talked about it we realized that we couldn’t really just do it on our own, in the past that’s the way things were done, but this is a new era and instead of things being done to Indigenous People we thought that it would be appropriate to ask people what they wanted, so it really is the new way of building a grant program and we followed a process called participatory grantmaking and it allows the people who are going to use the program to design the program,” said SK Arts Policy and Planning Adviser Carol Greyeyes.

“Our end was to create a program for and by indigenous people, we wanted to make it as big as possible so that all kinds of communities, all kinds of projects, all kinds of artforms could be incorporated into the program.”

The program offers a mentorship for artists, and community partnerships where Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities can connect.

The program will offer three different streams of funding available: small projects grant of $500 to $2000, an exhibition performance and presenting grant of $1000 to $2000, and mentorship and partnership projects grant of $2000 to $20,000. The first deadline for submissions will be on Jan. 7, 2023.

“We wanted to make accessibility, inclusion and diversity as much a part of it as possible and a program that was based on Indigenous values,” said Greyeyes.