Creative Scotland has launched three funding programmes that will provide a total of £11 million of support for people working in the arts who have been affected by the Covid-19 outbreak.
The first of these, the £2 million Creative Scotland Bridging Bursary Fund, will offer one-off bursary payments of between £500 and £2,500 to support freelance workers who have lost earnings due to the cancellation of work.
A parallel £1.5 million Screen Scotland Bridging Bursary programme will provide bursaries to individuals in the screen sector who are experiencing financial hardship.
The third scheme, called Open Funding: Sustaining Creative Development, will provide £7.5 million to support creative practitioners to continue to develop work.
Applicants will be encouraged to use the funding to explore how best to sustain their practice and reimagine their work during the crisis, as well as for the development and presentation of work.
The fund will support up to 12 months of activity, with a maximum award of £50,000. Applications will open on April 3.
Iain Munro, chief executive at Creative Scotland, said: “These are extremely challenging times that have brought serious personal and professional impacts to artists, creative practitioners and organisations and the work they do with communities across Scotland.
“At Creative Scotland our focus is to keep funding flowing. These funds direct our resources to those in need of immediate support and help to safeguard and sustain the sector and its work at this time.
“When we all emerge from this crisis, it will undoubtedly be to a changed world, but one I hope where culture and creativity remain at the heart of the life of the nation.”
Member of Scottish Parliament Fiona Hyslop, who is cabinet secretary for economy, fair work and culture said: “The impact of coronavirus is being felt everywhere. But the closure of cinemas, theatres, music venues and the many other places, combined with the high numbers of freelance and self-employed workers in the sector means the effects are particularly acute.
“It is vital we act now to help those whose income streams have been reduced to zero without warning.”