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Coach Access Program

The coach access program runs from October 2020 – June 2021. Apply here

Three categories of one on one coaching available:

1. Covid-19 Preparedness (mitigation and recovery)
Visual Arts Coaches: Shawna Dempsey (MAWA) and Eric Plamondon (Artspace)
Performing Arts Coaches: Josh Gennings (Shell Theatre, Fort Sask) and
Nick Beach (Jeanne & Peter Lougheed Performing Arts Centre, Camrose)

Sample Topics: planning, digital strategies, safety protocols, decision making & risk management
Commitment – Minimum 2-3 hours, up to 10 hours max per organization if required.

2. Grant Writing
Grant writing difficult, nuanced, time-consuming, and requires a specific skill set. Whether you are new to grant writing or whether it is “old hat” for you, there are many benefits to working with a coach, including highlighting what makes your organization/project unique and why your organization/project deserves funding.The Manitoba Arts Council will be moving the Arts Branch grants online for the next round of applications.

Coaching hours can be used to help you navigate the new system, create your online organizational profile, and design a 2 page document about your organization and its history.

Coaches: Visual Arts – Bev Pike, Performing Arts – Daniel Thau-Eleff

Commitment – A mix of webinars/group discussion (1.5 hrs each) and individual coaching. Number of hours allocated per organization will depend on the grant, with a max of 10 hours of coaching per organization for operating grants. Smaller project grants may only require/be allotted 5 hours. Participants should expect to spend about the same number of hours preparing/writing your grant in between coaching sessions.

3. Member Suggested Topic – you tell us what you want to be coached on
Sample Topics: Implementing new technology, strategic or business planning, arts management, marketing, social media, board governance etc.
Commitment – Number of hours allocated per organization will be determined on a case by case basis.

Members are welcome to apply to more than one category of coaching, please indicate your area of priority as we cannot guarantee that you will receive coaching in any or all areas you select.

The desired outcome for participating in the coaching could include but is not limited to: being Covid-19 prepared, improving the quality of Grants submitted to the Manitoba Arts Council, making programs more profitable, diversifying revenue streams, increasing organizational efficiencies, growing audiences, developing business or marketing and social media plans, how to better use social media and increasing ticket sales.

The coaching will be done by phone or video conferencing. No travel is required.

4. Website Mentoring: Now is the chance to improve your web presence while seasons are postponed. Work with a website developer to make updates to your website so that events are pulled into Google searches and the right information is being shown through Google.

Meet the Coaches

Nicholas Beach is the General Manager of the Jeanne & Peter Lougheed Performing Arts Centre on the University of Alberta, Augustana Campus in Camrose, Alberta. He has been at the Lougheed Centre since mid-way through construction of the building, which opened in October of 2014. Nick has worked at several performing arts centres over the last 19 years including the National Arts Centre, E. A Rawlinson Centre for the Arts, and Keyano College before moving to Camrose. He also spent the last season working with Manitoba Arts Network to coach 3 presenters under the Arts Management Stream.

Shawna Dempsey is a performance artist and curator, as well as Mentoring Artists for Women’s Art’s Co-Executive Director. She has mentored for Winnipeg art organizations including MAWA, Video Pool and Crossing Communities Community Art Project, and has provided mentoring workshops for Visual Arts Ontario, the Arts and Cultural Industries Association of Manitoba, and Visual Arts Nova Scotia among others. Her artwork is exhibited internationally, and includes pieces such as We’re Talking Vulva, Lesbian National Parks and Services, and The Dress Series. Earlier in her career, she was a self-supporting artist for 16 years, a feat she counts as her greatest accomplishment.. [/GDC_column]

Josh Gennings Since 2013, Josh has been the Theatre Supervisor for the city of Fort Saskatchewan’s Shell Theatre. His 20-year career in the arts has provided the opportunity to serve as project manager, production designer, and organizer throughout Canada, the United States, and Europe. From Cruise Ships, (RCI) to international conferences and large-scale awards shows (NASCAR), his varied operational experience is highly sought after. Developing relationships with presenting organizations and committees as a board and jury member, Josh now enjoys the thriving arts community in Alberta. A fervent musician, his balance of creativity and technical experience gives a unique perspective to finding success through innovation, process development, and technology.

Bev Pike has raised millions of dollars in art funding as a grant writer for artists and organizations since 1984. Pike is known for her large-scale land-form paintings, her videos and her artist-books that have been shown across Canada in solo and group exhibitions. Her works are held in the Tate Modern and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, England as well as in public and private collections across North America.

Areas of expertise:

Grant writing
Funding agencies (WAC, MAC, CCA, etc.)
Artists statements, Bios, CVs

Eric Plamondon is a valued arts administrator, having worked at Artspace for the past three years. He is equally respected as an active artist; regularly seen on stage or in front of a camera lens, mounting art installations of his creation or of other artists, as well as writing and directing. Eric is driven to participate in new art experiences and see how cross contamination can elevate and define Manitoba’s artistic offerings. As a triple minority, (francophone, métis and queer), Eric also knows the importance of art as a tool of empowerment. Which is also why he spends much time empowering other artists and communities through art. 

Eric Plamondon has won a mayors award for his project Nuit de_ART, his short film You And Me in a City won audience choice at the Reel Pride Film festival, and he was a leadership fellow for the Canadian Art Summit.