Elevating the Arts

How can we elevate the arts in Sonoma County?

The arts stretch our imaginations and animate our connection to community. Recognizing that the arts sector faces complex issues that are dwarfed by the resources currently available, Community Foundation Sonoma County gathered a diverse group of stakeholders to answer the question, “How can we elevate the arts in Sonoma County?”

Over the course of four facilitated work sessions, sixty-six people came together to deepen our understanding and provide insight into how we might work together. While the agenda remained consistent, the session participants were different, allowing for robust, cross-sector solutions.

Current factors influencing the arts in Sonoma County:

  • The popularity of participatory art making
  • Inequities in access to arts education
  • The absence of a countywide cultural arts plan

What are our priorities for elevating the arts

Across all four convening’s participants identified countywide promotion of the arts, establishing strong leadership, enhancing arts education and cooperating across sectors

Now the real challenge: moving from ideas to action

Community Foundation Sonoma County is committed to arts grant making that includes community feedback and is based on research driven best-practices. Therefore, our approaches include:

Arts Education: We support increasing equitable access to a high quality arts education for underserved youth in Sonoma County.

Artist Support: We support the growth and exposure of Sonoma County’s emerging artists.

Expanding Engagement: We invest in artists and arts organizations to diversify and deepen participation in the arts among new audiences

We are steadfast in our role as convener and advocate, joining with others in exploration and implementation. We invite you to stay connected, stay engaged and stay focused on a vibrant future for the arts.

Examples of arts grants:

California Poets in the Schools work closely with classroom teachers to grow young people’s creativity and intellectual curiosity through the poetry-writing process.

Mr. Music Foundation brings professional musicians into K-6 classrooms, providing ear training, singing, rhythm and movement, which also includes Spanish language and cross-cultural awareness.

Wells Fargo Center for the Arts Artists-in-Schools program integrates the arts into classrooms, providing dynamic, hands-on learning that accentuates lessons in math, science, language arts, and social studies.

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