Workshop’s message: Work together

Homer Council on the Arts (HCOA) was recently awarded city funds through the Homer Foundation as part of an annual application process for nonprofits in Homer. These funds are designated for operational expenses, which every nonprofit greatly appreciates. This funding supports the internal workings of the organization and demonstrates support which other funders’ value, leveraging additional funding. 

HCOA’s mission “to provide opportunities for all people in our community to experience and participate in the arts” includes producing performances with nationally and internationally renowned performers, and offering performance opportunities for our local youth and adult talent, as well as workshops, classes, HomerARTS camp, gallery exhibits, the Nutcracker Faire, scholarships and annual awards. An equally important service we are excited to provide is advocacy for the arts. We are in alignment with the tide of collaboration in Homer by being a part of Homer Arts and Culture Alliance (HACA); Park, Arts, Culture, and Recreation (PARC); and the Woodard Creek Coalition (WCC). HCOA would like to acknowledge the City of Homer for providing these funds, which support the HCOA mission, as well as their support and involvement with HACA, PARC and WCC. City support of HCOA’s building renovation also allowed HCOA the opportunity to apply for state funding. 

Last week, Peggy Paver (the new director of HCOA starting in June) and I attended a Leadership Summit in Anchorage presented by the Foraker Group. There were hundreds of non-profits represented from all over Alaska attending this conference including many non-profit leaders from Homer. The overall message was “Decide what you need, let go of the attachment to individual organizations and work together.” This is the evolving trend across the country in response to the changing economy, as well as the realization that we must work together to be more effective in dealing with the enormity of the issues we face in our country and around the world. It was all about what Mobilizing Action through Planning and Partnership (MAPP) is promoting in Homer with the “Collective Impact” approach to solving major issues. (See related column, page 5.)

There is so much all of us can do together to strive for this goal, a goal in which every organization, business and branch of government can contribute to make a difference. Thank you to the City of Homer for being a part of the steps Homer is taking to work together toward a healthy, safe, and creative community. There is much work ahead, with many more opportunities for all of us to expand coordinated efforts and partnerships, to collectively move forward into a future.

Gail Edgerly, executive director

Homer Council on the Arts