Advocating for arts can be a tough job. It requires to be articulated in a way that conveys the value of arts in every way possible deploying the right case-making tools during the right situation. The unprecedented era of COVID-19 is something none of us had been prepared for. Yet it’s inspiring how, amid all the chaos, art has still found a way to permeate our life. We have all seen artists performing for the world online, visited museums joined our neighbors in our balconies for a daily 6 pm sing along and whatnot. In such a difficult environment and time, art has still found a way to provide personal experiences and promoted social cohesion. Even though we don’t know how things will be post-COVID-19, but when it is finally time to stop social distancing, it will be art that will unite us as it’s arts that are at the very core of our human fundaments. It exalts and inspires us—fostering creativity, goodness, and beauty. The arts bring us joy, help us express our values, and build bridges between cultures. The arts also are a fundamental component of a healthy community—strengthening them socially, educationally, and economically—benefits that persist even in difficult social and economic times. Below are a few reasons to support art in 2020.
Arts Unify Communities.
72% of Americans believe “the arts unify our communities regardless of age, race, and ethnicity” and 73% agree that the arts “helps them understand other cultures better”—it is a perspective that has been observed across all demographic and economic categories.
Arts Improve Individual Well-Being.
81% of the population says the arts are a “positive experience in a troubled world,” 69% of the population believe the arts “lift me beyond everyday experiences,” and 73% feel the arts give them “pure pleasure to experience and participate in.”
Arts Improve Academic Performance.
Students who engage in arts learning tend to have higher GPAs, standardized test scores, and college-going rates as well as lower drop-out rates. These academic benefits are reaped by students regardless of their socio-economic status
Arts Strengthen The Economy.
The production of all arts and cultural goods in the U.S. (e.g., nonprofit, commercial, education) added $877.8 billion to the economy in 2017, including a $29.7 billion international trade surplus—a larger share of the nation’s economy (4.5%) than transportation, tourism, and agriculture (U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis). The nonprofit arts industry alone generates $166.3 billion in economic activity annually—spending by organizations and their audiences—which supports 4.6 million jobs and generates $27.5 billion in government revenue.
Arts Drive Tourism and Revenue to Local Businesses.
Attendees at nonprofit arts events spend $31.47 per person, per event, beyond the cost of admission on items such as meals, parking, and babysitters—valuable commerce for local businesses. 34% of attendees live outside the county in which the arts event takes place; they average $47.57 in event-related spending. Arts travelers are ideal tourists, staying longer and spending more to seek out authentic cultural experiences.