CCACS vision: Our vision is of CCACS as a fully functioning, effective, efficient and well-respected agent for the support, promotion and development of arts and culture in the Central Cariboo.
CCACS mission: CCACS promotes and supports arts and culture and the creative impulses necessary for their development in the Central Cariboo.
In 2009 in a remarkable initiative, the vast Cariboo Regional District became the first rural BC Regional District to develop an arts and culture function, passing a bylaw allocating tax revenue to arts and culture. The Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society was formed in 2010 as a BC registered non-profit society, with a mandate not only to administer this function, but also to serve the many existing independent cultural organizations and events and to facilitate the development of arts and culture in the central part of the region. We take seriously the notion of assisting the development of the arts—not simply supporting the status quo—and one important means of doing that is our administration of an annual Small Project Grants Program and administration of the CRD’s Fee-for-Service Program. We also oversee the annual Performances in the Park concert series.
In a related initiative the City of Williams Lake, together with the Regional District redeveloped its old fire hall to become the Central Cariboo Arts Centre in the city’s downtown. We manage this facility which provides studio space to four tenant groups (Williams Lake Spinners, Weavers and Fibre Artists’ Guild, the Cariboo Potters’ Guild, the Cariboo Art Society, and the Community Arts Council of Williams Lake), as well as performance and meeting spaces for the broader arts community. Building use has increased markedly since its opening and we now host a rich variety of activities and events and are delighted to see frequent “drop-ins” from passersby.
We aim effectively to administer an important function of local government and to serve the cultural enrichment of the region.
Mandate & Structure
The Central Cariboo Arts and Culture Society’s purposes as defined in its constitution are
(a) to support artistic and cultural organizations and events in the Central Cariboo (the Central Cariboo is defined as the City of Williams Lake and areas D, E and F of the Cariboo Regional District),
(b) to facilitate, coordinate and assist in the development of arts and culture in the Central Cariboo,
(c) to provide strategic advice on arts and culture to local governments and other organizations and
(d) to educate the public with respect to arts and culture matters. The Society also manages the Central Cariboo Arts Centre.
The Society is not a “producing” organization. It is better described as a service organization, providing assistance to all arts and culture groups and organizations in the region. The Society takes seriously the notion of assisting the development of the arts—not simply supporting the status quo.
Sources of Funding
The Society’s basic operational funding comes from the Cariboo Regional District’s Central Cariboo arts and culture function. The function was established by CRD bylaw #4420 (2009) and provides for tax revenue dedicated to arts and culture in the Regional District’s Areas “D”, “E” and “F” and the City of Williams Lake. All allocations from this function to the Society must be approved by the Regional District Board on the recommendation of the Central Cariboo Joint Committee. This Committee is made up of the Mayor and Councillors of the City of Williams Lake and the elected Directors of the Central Cariboo areas of CRD.
Two service agreements are in place. One requires the Society to manage the Central Cariboo Arts Centre. The second and more comprehensive one requires us to administer the arts and culture function. One clause sets out the expectation that the Society will be active in leveraging funds for arts and culture from other sources. This is not to say, however, that the Society is to engage in fund raising on its own behalf—indeed for it to do so would be contrary to the spirit of the mandate because it would essentially be fund raising at the expense of the region’s other arts and culture groups.
The Society’s Governance, Staffing and Programs
The Society is a BC registered non-profit society. It is governed by a nine-member Board of Directors and has one full-time employee (the Executive Director) and one part-time employee (the Arts Centre Administrator)
Renovations to the general areas of the Arts Centre were largely completed in 2011 and an additional small meeting room has been refurnished more recently. The Centre is now being regularly used for meetings, rehearsals, workshops and performances. We continue to administer a grants program offering project grants to groups and societies in the region, as well as administer the CRD’s Fee-for-Service Program. Our business plan includes a continuation of an inventory of facilities and activities in the region as well as the development of mutually beneficial partnerships.