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"Art inspires us. It spurs us to innovate and drives us to imagine the impossible. Culture grounds us. It connects us to our past, brings us together and lifts us up."

Creative County Initiative (CCI)

In 2017, ECCF embarked on the Creative County Initiative (CCI), in partnership with the Barr Foundation and many other arts funders across Essex County. This effort, over a 5-year period, will invest more than $2 Million in the arts, culture and creative sector.

CCI Phase 1: Pilot 2017-2019
During the first 2-year pilot phase, $750,000 was invested in four strategies:

Granted more than $300,000 to collaborative partnerships, bringing to life 12 Public Art and Creative Placemaking projects across our region. Learn more.

Convened 125 participants from 30 communities in support of cultural planning initiatives and mapping our critical cultural resources. Learn more.

Gathered more than 700 attendees at the Essex County Arts & Culture Summit for meaningful discussion, workshops and networking to embolden the local arts sector. Learn more.

Launched, a regional online platform for artists and cultural organizations to enhance their visibility and share resources across the arts community. Learn more.

CCI Phase 2: Grow and Change 2020-2022
Beginning in 2020, a new 3-year expansion of Creative County will begin with an investment of $1.3 Million.  This work will expand existing strategies and develop new efforts to help change the perception and value of arts and culture in our region.

Phase 2 Investment Areas:

Collaborative Projects: Public art & Creative Placemaking grants
(View New Grant Guidelines Here!)

Cultural Planning: Inclusive strategy-setting with municipal leaders
Capacity Building: Knowledge and tools to help artists and arts organizations succeed

Convenings: Arts and Culture Summit and Think Labs to incubate ideas
Communications & Connectivity: Resources to amplify our work
Learn more about CCI's work, Phase 2 goals and investment areas:

Sign up for Creative County Initiative news HERE to stay up to date!

The free arts hub for Essex County. This regional online calendar allows artists and arts and cultural organizations to promote their events and activities, share resources and information across the arts community and so much more.






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