CAN Enters Fall with a Fury

Dear Friends & Supporters,

CAN is making great strides! 

With your support, we’re pleased to report that CAN gained serious momentum this summer toward the goal of establishing a $15-$20 million annual public fund for the arts and arts education in our region within the next 2-5 years. 

We’re excited to share with you some of the summer’s highlights:

  • Jessica Jarratt was hired to serve as CAN’s first full-time Executive Director on July 1stRead More…
  • Madeline Turnock, APR, was hired as CAN’s communications and outreach director.
  • First Wieden + Kennedy, and now GBD Architects, generously donated office space to launch the movement.
  • More than 55 volunteers were recruited to reach out to tens of thousands of arts supporters at events from TBA to Art in the Pearl and more.
  • More than 75 volunteer hours were logged in August alone.
  • A Membership Campaign was launched raising nearly $20,000 in two weeks from arts organizations across the region.
  • A 50-person Regional Steering Committee was built to finalize the structure of the proposed new fund by this coming winter.
  • The Oregonian shared our story and the results of our recent poll.   Read More…
  • Your investments fueled our efforts and advanced the cause and more of you continue to join us as members every day with a commitment of $10/month at theartscan.org.

And, to think, it was just last spring when the Creative Action Plan (“Act for Art”) for the Portland Metropolitan region – a bold region-wide vision for arts and culture – was formed from the input of 1,500 participants.

What’s up next?  Stay tuned for new additions to CAN’s board of directors and next month’s launch of the Regional Steering Committee.

Poll Results Show Clear Voter Support for the Arts

Voters Understand Arts Funding Challenges and Are Willing To Step Up

PORTLAND, Ore. – Sept. 7, 2009 – Creative Advocacy Network (CAN) released polling results today that show voter resolve to continue attending, supporting and funding the region’s arts and culture in expanded ways.

“The economic crisis helped crystallize public priorities and funding in the minds of voters, and the result is an even stronger commitment to invest in the arts and arts education,” said Jessica Jarratt, CAN executive director. “Meanwhile, we also have a more galvanized arts community.”

Overall, the poll shows a significant jump in positive public opinion and understanding of the important role and need for increased funding of arts and culture in the community

Key findings of the poll include:

 Voters strongly support providing dedicated funding to support the arts in the region and are willing to pay for it. For example, more than two-thirds of voters believe that arts are a necessity, not a luxury, and 74% believe that dedicated arts funding is necessary, up 4% from 2008. And, another 70% of regional voters are willing to pay $1 more per month toward a dedicated public fund for the arts, despite widespread economic concerns.

 Voters continue to attend arts and cultural events and view them as critical to the Portland Metropolitan region’s quality of life and economic well-being. For example, 51% believe that arts and culture helps fuel creativity and innovation crucial to our economy.

 Voters are increasingly concerned that there will be fewer opportunities to enjoy arts and arts education in the region. For example, 71% understand that arts education in schools is being cut.

The latest poll was intended to reveal any shifts in public sentiment that may have taken place since a similar poll conducted in October 2008.

The poll, conducted by Fairbank, Maslin, Maulin & Associates, gauged the opinions of 400 voters within the Portland Metropolitan tri-county area during May 2009, with a margin of error +/- 4.9 percent. Of the 400 voters that surveyed by phone, 150 were in Multnomah County, 125 were in Clackamas County and 125 were in Washington County.

The Portland metro area’s local arts organizations receive less than two percent of their budgets from local government sources, compared to a five percent national average, according to research by the Regional Arts & Culture Council and National Endowment for the Arts.

Read more in today’s Oregonian: http://www.oregonlive.com/art/index.ssf/2009/09/creative_advocacy_network_rele.html.

View or download ‘Polling Summary PDF‘.