What were the specific goals of this creative economy project? Describe the community development challenge or opportunity that your project was designed to address:
The Hannah Grimes Center, a center for entrepreneurs in the Monadnock region, found that artists and crafters were not taking advantage of their programming at the level they had hoped. Artists, Crafters, and Makers were one of their key sectors to support when developing their programming, but they were having difficulty engaging this community. Arts Alive! was at that time looking to leverage and increase the economic impact of arts & culture businesses in the Monadnock region. So, in 2014, Arts Alive! and The Hannah Grimes Center developed a partnership to work to build business savvy in the creative industry sector.
If the goals change over time, please describe how:
We found that this was an excellent way to help creatives build relationships within their community. The need for a Creative Community had been communicated to Arts Alive! several times. This program has begun to build that among self-employed and independently operating artists.
Who was involved in this project and what did they do? (be sure to include the partners from outside of the creative sector and how local voices were included):
The Hannah Grimes Center has been instrumental in the coordination of this program. They provide online registration, co-promotion, and occasionally we utilize their space or presenter community to fill in gaps in our program.
The Monadnock Art X Tech makerspace partnered with us in 2016 to host an intensive series that culminated in a business planning workshop day. It was our intention to build our "makers" community by working with them, and we found a few stellar new businesses to bring in to the community. It was their intention to give their members access to business building programs, since they had not ventured into that territory yet.
How does this project relate to a larger community development strategy?
In our regional planning commission's master plan and our urban center (Keene)'s master plan arts were identified as a sector that enhanced quality of life and added exponentially to the local economy. Supporting creative businesses and offering entrepreneurship training to new local businesses are high up on our community's priority list of economic development initiatives.