Mayor Andre Dickens announced the opening of the Creative Industries Grant Fund—a joint program of the Mayor’s Office of Film and Entertainment and Invest Atlanta to assist the city of Atlanta’s independent content creators and creative entrepreneurs. Originally opened in 2017 as the Creative Industries Loan Fund, the program has been converted to a grant fund with $725,000 available to support creative professionals as they continue to recover from economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The pandemic hit our independent creative sector hard as entertainment venues, performance spaces, filming, music and other productions were temporarily closed or suspended,” said Mayor Dickens. “By offering grants we can do more to accelerate economic recovery and growth in one of our city’s most important industries.”
The Creative Industries Grant Fund supports the City of Atlanta’s Economic Mobility Plan, including stimulating growth of Atlanta’s economy, industry sectors and businesses, and creating pathways that strengthen the ability of entrepreneurs and small business owners to create and maintain thriving businesses. Grant awards can be used for production, post-production, distribution, marketing outreach, touring, prototype development, product development, and sales and attraction for their creative projects.
“Some estimates suggest that industries hit hardest by COVID-19, including arts, entertainment and recreation, will not make a full recovery until 2025 or later,” said Dr. Eloisa Klementich, president and CEO of Invest Atlanta. “Eighty-four percent of creatives who responded to a 2020 Invest Atlanta survey said their income fell, and we recognize that many are still working to regain their footing, which makes this grant program especially helpful.”
Eligible applicants may apply for grant awards from $5,000 to $20,000. Creative professionals who received a loan through the previous Creative Industries Loan Fund may have some or all of their loan forgiven through the new grant program.
“The loan changed my life,” said Actor and Creative Devin Robinson, who received a Creative Industries Loan through Invest Atlanta during the first round. “For the first time as an artist, I had enough funding to complete a project, not ‘just enough’ or ‘enough to make it work’ but enough. That’s huge. Ask any artist if they’ve ever had that experience.”
The Creative Industries Grant Fund is open to independent content creators and creative entrepreneurs located within the city of Atlanta that plan to create content within the city of Atlanta; independent record, management labels and their talent located within the city of Atlanta; independent businesses who provide educational resources and platforms to creative entrepreneurs, including creative accelerators and incubators; independent commercial arts industry professionals (independent designers, photographers, illustrators, web designers, graphic designers, multimedia designers). All applicants must have a valid City of Atlanta business license.
Invest Atlanta will accept applications from September 9, 2022, through November 9, 2022. Interested applicants can visitwww.investatlanta.com/creatives to learn more about the program and apply. Grants are expected to be disbursed to awardees at the beginning of 2023 after the application review and scoring period is completed in early January 2023.