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GAUTENG ORGANISATION OF COMMUNITY ARTS AND CULTURE CENTRES
CHAIRPERSON’S REPORT
FOR THE YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH 2015

Overview

Funding received from the NAC (for Young Upcoming Directors) and GACC Capacity Building Workshops and Festivals during the last financial year was completed and reported on, with three GACC workshop/training festivals being carried over into the early part of this financial year. Unfortunately funds were not received timorously from the NLDTF (National Lottery Development Trust Find), who has been one of our main supporters in the past.

Not to be outdone we turned our attention to what we could do without external funding and in particular our central region came up with the idea of starting stock veldt events to both generate funds and give local artists a chance to share their talents. In the other regions the members started running their own events from their own funding received and here we played a support, guidance and mentorship role. It is encouraging that our regions are now motivating and running projects for themselves instead of relying on the central provincial office.

Following on from the National Provincial meetings in the previous period, (on the resuscitation of the National Federation of Community Art Centres), DAC towards the latter part of this financial year was able to release funds to all provinces for a series of Provincial Development Festivals. Also, at the request of the national department, GOMACC was asked to administer funds for four additional provinces. Part of this funding has straddled into our next financial year.

GACC

The main objective of the workshop was to provide artists with capacity building training. We believe that the arts and performing artists will benefit through the professionalization of the arts. We provided training in basic business norms, ethics, leadership skills and government compliance on funding applications. Moreover the overall aim was to capacitate artists and groups enabling them to add to their artistic skills the ability to perform effectively in a business environment. We provided the artists with skills that can be applied when managing their businesses and finances. It was imperative for all artists to learn, the youth and those with experience, to have basic project management skills in order to handle the day to day running of their operations.

The project was implemented in all five regions for two days in each region. We conducted a basic skills audit to check and verify the skills and competencies of the various artistic groups and individuals. By capacitating these artists we are confident that the basics were covered and a strong foundation was laid.

The second session for the participants entailed practical music and dance workshops facilitated by professional choreographers. This was followed by showcasing their talents which were then adjudicated and commented on for further improvement in their presentations. This was done to improve their chances for job creation both within their region and municipalities and to facilitate their own events.

Provincial Makala Structures, Stokvels and Other Initiatives

The information obtained from the GACC funding was further shared with the Makala groups during our further interactions within the 5 regions. Apart from running the Makala management workshops our Operations Manager assisted where needed in restructuring, hosting and mentoring their events which were motivated through their own initiative. Our involvement continued in the various regions by engaging with their respective municipalities with a focus of stimulating more interaction between our arts bodies and their local structures. In some instances a local office was provided, in another region they would utilise the local Makala to provide artists for their various functions. The central region in particular started up the local Stokvels as a way to generate funds and to give local groups a chance to get exposure, share their talents, build audiences and increase sustainability. Stokvels will be launched in all other regions.

Over the course of the year we also revisited our five management structures where through discussion and the recruitment of new members the local bodies were strengthened. Extra input however was needed for the West Rand regional structure.

GOMACC and SATI invited their members to attend a workshop facilitated by Ugqozi Lwethu, Splender and SATI. The workshop focussed on NPO’s to become sustainable cooperatives and to access the other services from DTI and other Departments.

National Department of Arts and Culture

Following on from the National Provincial meetings in the previous financial year, DAC towards the latter part of this financial year was able to release funds for a series of Provincial Development Festivals throughout the country. In addition GOMACC, at the request of the national department, administered funds to four other Provinces. Where the activity started in this financial year it was carried over and concluded in the 2015/2016 year.

Gauteng Province, with regions already waiting for this funding, was ready to move. On the 29 January we held a meeting with our five structures to discuss and plan the way forward where all regions were given a similar budget. Each region was asked to come up with a plan and budget on how they were going to achieve the objective of running their own regional festival which needed to have a strong development component. This was later achieved by having professional guest speakers providing the necessary inputs and training on the morning of each festival (run over a two day weekend) which was then followed by adjudicators giving in depth feedback on performances that the groups could use to improve their work. Too often in the past our groups have felt isolated just working from home without this much needed professional input. Tshwane was able to run their event in March 2015 with the other regions following in April/May.

Our thanks

Our funding thanks in this financial year goes to the Gauteng Arts and Culture Council and the Department of Arts and Culture. We also wish to thank the City of Joburg, West Rand, Tshwane, Sedibeng and Ekurhuleni municipalities for their contribution. Our grateful thanks go to our Board Members and all those people who have worked with us in the development of the arts during this financial year.

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