Supporting arts and culture through uncertainty

Arts, Culture & Heritage

The Winnipeg Foundation is committed to a better future for all, and we believe supporting arts and culture is integral to realizing our vision. Arts organizations and community festivals have been hit hard by the pandemic, with many having to cancel or reduce their programming in the last two years due to COVID-19.

During this difficult time, The Winnipeg Foundation has helped through One-Time Community Grants, Major Capital Grants, and other granting streams dedicated to arts organizations. Through this support and the inspiring dedication of volunteers, staff, and community members, organizations have continued to provide programming to their communities.

Rainbow Stage had a busy winter preparing for a summer production of the new musical The Hockey Sweater, which will run from June 30 to July 17. Starting in February, the theatre company hosted camps at community centres across Manitoba, ahead of the casting call for the production.

About 400 youth aged nine to 15 in Winnipeg, Brandon, Portage la Prairie, and Brokenhead Ojibway Nation had the opportunity to explore hockey, dance, and acting. Rainbow Stage also received more than 30 pairs of rollerblades and other equipment donated by Manitobans, helping ensure everyone had access to necessary equipment.

The camps are part of From Community Centre to Centre Stage, a three-phase campaign supported by The Winnipeg Foundation, that allows Rainbow Stage to meet youth where they are and tap potential young talent they might typically not see, as they searched for eight young Manitoba actors for their production.

Graphic design kit. Photo courtesy of Graffiti Art Programming.

Graffiti Art Programming (GAP) is another organization providing arts training and programming for youth, with a focus on Winnipeg’s North End and downtown. The Winnipeg Foundation provided support to GAP’s Community Art Kit Project (CAKP), which is now a “mainstay” of the organization’s programming.

CAKP has been working throughout the pandemic to reduce isolation and foster creativity while reducing the financial and technological barriers that are often part of virtual arts programming. More than 9,000 themed art kits have already been delivered to community members, many of whom are children and youth. Art kit themes have included graphic design, upcycled art, embroidery and more.

For a list of available art kits, please visit

10x10x10 Project
June 20 – August 24

Originally conceived as a public gift in celebration of The Winnipeg Foundation’s centennial last year, this project is a series of 10 concerts, at 10 different locations, over 10 weeks this summer, in neighbourhoods across the city, that are free and open to the public. Concerts will feature members of The Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra (WSO), and other local musicians. Sistema Winnipeg and WSO musicians will open the series with a performance at Seven Oaks Performing Arts Centre on June 20, 2022. Burnstick will lose the series on August  24 at The Forks.

For more information, visit

This story is featured in the Spring 2022 issue of our Working Together magazine. Download or view the full issue on our Publications page.

About the photo

Community Centre to Centre Stage team and students during the public workshop offered at Elwick Community Centre. Photo courtesy of Rainbow Stage.

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