Toronto Arts Council invests $350,000 in Toronto’s Newcomer and Refugee Artists and Communities

Toronto Arts Council supports newcomer and refugee artists and communities through targeted funding

June 28, 2017 

Last night, Toronto Arts Council’s board of directors approved a total of $350,000 in grants to support Toronto’s newcomers and refugees. The funding will increase arts access for our city’s newest residents. Launched in January 2017, two new funding programs were designed specifically to address the needs of Toronto’s newcomer and refugee professional artists, as well as newcomer and refugee communities.

The Newcomer and Refugee Arts Engagement program provides targeted support to organizations and collectives working with newcomers and refugees through the arts.

The Newcomer and Refugee Artist Mentorship program provides funding for individual newcomer and refugee professional artists to work with a mentor in their chosen arts discipline. TAC has partnered with Neighbourhood Arts Network on this component to match applicants with interested artist mentors.

Both programs were met with an overwhelming response. Over three days, a peer jury, facilitated by Rupal Shah, Toronto Arts Council Grants Officer, Strategic Programs, assessed a total of 106 applications, totaling over $1.3 million in requests. On June 27, 2017, 8 organizations were approved for funding through the Newcomer and Refugee Arts Engagement program, and 19 newcomer artists were approved for funding through the Newcomer and Refugee Artist Mentorship program.

“Newcomers bring so much to this city, and newcomer artists in particular have the potential to reimagine our growing and vibrant arts scene. Toronto Arts Council has made it a priority to support Toronto’s newest residents through these exciting new programs.” – Claire Hopkinson, Director and CEO.

Contact information
For more information on these programs, contact Rupal Shah, Grants Officer, Strategic Programs.; 416-392-6802 x 209

About Toronto Arts Council
Toronto Arts Council (TAC) is the City of Toronto’s funding body for artists and arts organizations. Since 1974, TAC has played a major role in the city’s cultural industries by supporting a very broad range of artistic activity. From the emerging artist to the most established, from celebrated institutions to arts that challenge convention, TAC is typically the first funder to offer support. Today, TAC grants lead to exhibitions, performances, readings and workshops seen annually by over 7.5 million people. Through its ongoing funding of over $16 million annually, TAC cultivates a rich engagement between artists and audiences. It is proud to reflect Toronto’s vibrancy through the diversity of the artists, arts communities and audiences that it serves. For more about Toronto Arts Council, visit

About Neighbourhood Arts Network
Neighbourhood Arts Network is dedicated to celebrating and supporting over 1800 community engaged artists and organizations across Toronto. We envision a Toronto in which artists in every neighbourhood have the resources, training and support to make transformative art. The Neighbourhood Arts Network is a strategic initiative of the Toronto Arts Foundation, the partner organization of TAC.