Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Canada Council's Flying Squad program to no longer be offered, at least in present form

The Canada Council for Arts's Flying Squad may return in the future in name, but not in its present form. The program's half yearly round was suspended last fall while a review was done and now the spring deadline is also being suspended because the  review is taking longer than anticipated. 

However, no matter how that turns out, the longstanding assistance program will not be coming back as it was; according to a posting on the Council's website, the Flying Squad is effectively being suspended permanently:
"The Council has now confirmed that the Flying Squad program will no longer be offered in its past form. The Council will announce an alternative strategy to support adaptive capacity in June 2013."
Coordinators will no longer be available for consultations about the program, though one will remain to receive final reports on outstanding projects. The sole exception is the aboriginal version of the program, which will continue, but will also be reviewed.

Open to organizations which had received either an operating or project grant from the Council, the Flying Squad is (was) an important fund, accessed by many arts and culture magazines and magazine-related organizations, created to provide organizational research and planning and mentorship to organizations facing crisis or undergoing a transition. 

The Flying Squad began in the late 1990s with help to theatre and dance organizations; it was expanded in 2005 to music, visual arts, media arts and Inter-arts and Literary and Art Magazine grant recipients became eligible in November, 2005.

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