Deborah Stone | Arts Hub |  Wednesday 18 February 2015

Matched funding programs offer increased incentive to crowdfund your next project.

Responding to the growing popularity of crowdfunding and the increased need for private sector support for the arts, government funding is increasingly turned towards supporting artists to find their own money rather than providing discrete grants.

While grant money has reduced, Creative Partnerships Australia (CPA) – the government-funded agency charged with stimulating private support of the arts – has funds available for artists who find their own supporters.

Applications opened last week for MATCH, a CPA program that provides dollar-for-dollar matched funding to artists who raise funds through any approved crowdfunding platform.

The program is designed not only to support creative projects but also to help independent artists develop their fundraising skills, connect with private sector revenue streams, build awareness of their work and attract new audiences.

A pilot MATCH program last year supported 77 campaigns by independent artists and groups, attracting 2,805 supporters to those projects. This year CPA will grant $300,000 in matched funding to approved projects.

Artists can receive MATCH funds for the first $10,000 they raise. Last year artists raised an average of  $11,900 through their associated crowdfunding campaigns, providing them with a total of $21,900 for the project.

CPA CEO Fiona Menzies said the system allows artists to choose the platform best suited to their project. Artists can raise their funds through CPA’s own platform, the Australian Cultural Fund or to a private platform such as Pozible, Kickstarter or Indiegogo. Read How to choose the best crowd-funding site for tips on selecting the right platform.

Funds from private giving, business sponsorship and philanthropic trusts or foundations will be matched but the program will not match funds from any form of local, state or federal government funding, bequests, loans or in-kind support. It will also not include pre-existing fundraising commitments

‘The added benefit of linking your project to MATCH is that you will have access to the Creative Partnerships team, who will provide advice and guidance to artists to ensure they have the highest likelihood of reaching their campaign target,’ said Menzies.

Applications close on 9 March, 2015 and the crowdfunding campaign must be carried out between 23 March and 29 May 2015.

IMAGE: Gregory Young, Double Vision Print, Image via fineartamerica