Community organizations and artists on Chicago’s West and South Sides will be getting a boost for cultural arts programming, thanks to $1 million in city grants.
The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) announced Tuesday that grants from the Neighborhood Access Program have been distributed to 27 recipients, 89% of which are in West Side and South Side neighborhoods .
The grants range from $10,000 to $50,000 each, with seven grantees receiving the maximum award, according to DCASE.
“Our city is a city of neighborhoods, each of which has its own unique flavor and contributes to what I like to call the ‘Soul of Chicago,’ ” Mayor Brandon Johnson said in a release. “With this commitment, we continue to invest in people and uplift the organizations and communities that need our support the most.”
Sandra Bivens, executive director of the 51st Street Business Association, said she was “ecstatic” when she learned the South Side organization had received $44,000 for its monthly “Brown Derby Jazz Series Part 2,” which will take place at Bronzeville Winery beginning in March.
“We’ll be putting at least 40 people to work next year,” Bivens said.
“Under [the Neighborhood Access Program], you can do a lot of different types of things. We’re doing a cultural, musical piece, but somebody else might be keeping their theaters open or their art galleries open. But it all focuses on communities that are trying to become more viable, to get the neighborhoods more involved.”