Upstate California Creative Corp

Inspired by the Federal Government’s WPA program that gave employment to artists and others during the Great Depression nearly a century ago, the California Arts Council is launching the California Creative Corps (CCC) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Though we may have collectively moved on from the shocks of 2020, public health, climate health, and civic engagement are still urgent priorities.

The CCC grant acknowledges artists and culture bearers as uniquely situated to engage boldly and meaningfully in these priorities. This pilot program offers a unique opportunity to apply for funding to creatively address four program goals across traditional dividing lines.

The Lake County Arts Council is a CCC partner agency for the 19-county Upstate Region of Northern California, which will receive a total of $3,384,043 million in workforce development funds for artists as well as arts and social service organizations that employ artists through late 2024.

Creative Corps Program Goals

Soon, artists throughout the state of California will have the opportunity to apply for California Creative Corps grant funding to creatively address one or more of these four program goals:

Public health – the health of the population as a whole, including public health awareness messages to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Climate mitigation & conservation – reducing the flow of heat-trapping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, either by reducing emissions of these gases (such as by burning fossil fuels for electricity, heat, or transport) or enhancing “sinks” that accumulate and store these gases (such as the oceans, forests, and soil); or raising public awareness about water and energy conservation, and emergency preparedness, relief, and recovery.

Civic engagement – the ways in which citizens participate in the life of a community to improve conditions for others or help shape the community’s future; this includes promoting the quality of life in a community, through both political and non-political processes and encouraging election participation.

Social justice & community engagement – advancing equal economic, political and social rights and opportunities for everyone; opening the doors of access and opportunity, particularly for those in greatest need.

Interested in becoming a panelist?

Lake County grant applications will be reviewed by a panel of local peers. Lake County panelists must meet the following criteria:

  1. They must be Lake County residents
  2. They must be able to assess the strengths and weaknesses of multiple applications based on the Upstate California Creative Corps published program goals and review criteria
  3. They must have the capacity to take part in three (3) mandatory virtual group meetings and 10-12 hours reviewing grants, taking notes, and attending meetings and orientations over a six to eight-week period. Each volunteer panelist receives a modest honorarium of $150. All reviews and meetings may take place in person and/or remotely. More information about reviewing grants will be provided at the appropriate time.

Community members who are interested in applying to become a panelist

Looking for a Place to Share Ideas?

Our Conversation Café is a space for artists, cultural practitioners, and culture bearers, as well as those serving organizations tackling important local and regional issues, to communicate both within and beyond their usual circles, in order to promote a deeper understanding of one another’s work and to promote partnerships.

Hosted by nineteen county arts agencies across California’s Upstate Region, our hope is that, in anticipation of the launch and rollout of the Upstate California Creative Corps, our daily conversations will inspire new projects that create awareness for public health, environmental issues, climate mitigation, and emergency preparedness, relief, and recovery, civic engagement, and social justice issues.

Upcoming Events

Informational Meeting
Feb 17th at 12 noon
Informational Webinar for the Upstate California Creative Corps. Register in advance for this meeting.

Upstate Creative Corps | Virtual Office Hours
Feb 14th, 21, 28 / March 7, 14, 21 & 28  12pm-1pm (days listed)
Facebook Event to Zoom Meeting link:
       Meeting ID: 842 8758 2858 | Passcode: 805631 | Dial–in number: +16694449171

Upstate Creative Corp Listening Tour