About Working in the Arts (2022–2023)
Working in the Arts: Resources and Pathways for Newcomers is a series of training sessions, and access to information and resources, to help support newcomer and immigrant artists and arts professionals achieve career success in Toronto/GTA and beyond.
This program aims to streamline the pathway to careers in the arts and culture sector by providing relevant information for:
- settlement and employment service providers looking to better equip their clients.
- arts organizations seeking to engage newcomer and immigrant artists and arts professionals.
- newcomer and immigrant artists and arts professionals looking to build awareness and knowledge about careers and career resources in the arts and culture sector.
This pilot initiative will focus on settlement organizations, arts organizations, and newcomer artists and arts professionals in Toronto/GTA, with relevance for communities and organizations across Canada.
Resources and information on careers in the arts will be shared here throughout the program.
Work in Culture is pleased to be working in partnership with Airsa, the Immigrant Writers Association, the Institute for Creative Exchange, Paralia Newcomer Arts Network and the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council to develop and deliver Working in the Arts.
Interested in receiving updates on upcoming Working in the Arts training sessions and resources? Please sign up here to be added to the Working in the Arts mailing list.
Working in the Arts is based on recommendations from a 2021 Work in Culture needs assessment that explored the challenges, barriers and opportunities of Navigating a Career in the Arts for Newcomers.
The needs assessment found that while settlement organizations (70+ in the GTA) are generally the first point of contact for immigrants and provide a wide range of helpful resources and support, they often lack insight into the arts and culture sector and opportunities for careers in the arts. At the same time, the arts community has a range of services and programs that can help immigrant artists and arts professionals navigate the Canadian arts and culture ecosystem and provide career support, but they often lack contact with newcomers.
In response, Working in the Arts brings together both settlement and arts sector organizations to create more efficient wayfinding and to enhance the resources each offer to support newcomers and immigrants who seek to pursue a career in the arts.
How Does This Program Define “Newcomers”?
Work in Culture appreciates that newcomer or new Canadian status and definitions may differ depending on a number of factors, including age, time in Canada, immigration/permanent resident status, reasons for migration, and other personal experience.
Work in Culture embraces a broad definition for newcomers or new Canadians as immigrants or refugees who are still adapting to life in Canada. To access and benefit from Work in Culture’s training and resources, newcomers do not have to adhere to a specific time period of being in Canada. These resources and training may also benefit those who have obtained permanent resident status and/or Canadian citizenship yet continue to encounter barriers to their career success in arts and culture.
In other instances, such as government programs, settlement services, and funding or grant-based programs, there may be more, stricter eligibility requirements when it comes to newcomer status. In many cases, these initiatives require recipients or applicants to have lived in Canada for less than 5–10 years. Additionally, some granting programs require applicants to have permanent resident status, or application pending, in addition to having lived in a city/Canada for at least 12 months in order to be eligible. For these external resources, Work in Culture and their partners will endeavor to clarify eligibility as part of any training and hosted information.
If you have any questions about Working in the Arts: Resources and Pathways for Newcomers, please contact:
We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.
Resilience, Determination, and Passion – Journey of Immigrant Women Artists in Canada
What is it like to be an immigrant woman artist or arts administrator in Canada? In this blog post, artists Jieun Kim and Lulu Ladrón de Guevara and arts administrator Sair Raut share their journey and perspectives on working in the arts sector in Canada. Read more.
The Long Road to Re-Presentation
In the first installment of this Working in the Arts blog series, Sally Sampson shares her journey from performing artist to starting her own company that empowers performers from underrepresented and marginalized groups. Read more.
Where Do We Go From Here?
In the second installment, Sally Sampson talks about navigating the arts and culture sector as a newcomer and shares her strategies for how to be resourceful and move yourself forward in the arts. Read more.
Art is Not Enough
In the third and final installment, Sally Sampson talks about how every artist is an entrepreneur and how having this mindset can be empowering. Read more.