Culture is inclusive and welcoming to all – as creators, participants, or audiences. It breaks down barriers, whether physical, socioeconomic, or educational. Our Universal Participation Initiative employs the principles of universal design to help nonprofit organizations serve persons of all abilities, expanding access to all the arts, humanities, and sciences have to offer.
free or discounted admissions given at 250+ cultural destinations in the EBT Card to Culture program to Mass residents of limited means1.
were funded by the Council last year, providing 697,914 attendees free or low-cost experiences across the Commonwealth2.
Culture elevates the quality of life and well-being of communities across Massachusetts. More than 2,500 volunteers serve on 329 Local Cultural Councils, the most extensive, grass-roots cultural funding network in America. We also support Cultural Districts, Festivals and other initiatives that make culture a common experience for children and adults across the state, empowering artists and cultural organizations as they bring meaning and purpose to our lives. Through our CultureRx Initiative, we’re building a public infrastructure that supports the role of cultural experiences as a protective factor in the health and well-being of all people in the Commonwealth.
of Massachusetts residents participate in at least one cultural event each month, higher than the national average3.
our cultural organizations offer more than 49,833 public events each year, an average of 137 a day4.
consisting of more than 800 partnering organizations – have been designated in Massachusetts, more than any other state in the country.
Each year, local councils award over $5 million in grants to more than 6,000 cultural programs statewide.
Culture is a major contributor to economic growth and opportunity in Massachusetts. Programs like the Cultural Investment Portfolio and Cultural Facilities Fund fuel this sector with grants and services that help our nonprofits grow, thrive, and better serve their public. Our Cultural District and Cultural Compacts foster local partnerships between artists, nonprofits, businesses, and municipalities, putting culture at the center of community development.
Culture plays a central role in the lives of young people as they learn, grow, and shape their world. We are national leaders in the growing creative youth development movement, with programs like YouthReach, Amplify, and SerHacer. STARS Residencies and Big Yellow School Bus reaffirm our decades-long commitment to education with funds for schools for field trips and partnerships with teaching artists and cultural organizations to enliven classrooms through creative learning.
111,262 children are engaged with creative youth development and education by Mass Cultural Council grantees7.
of creative youth development participants plan for post-secondary education8.
youth empowered through creative youth development programs we support. 9