COVID-19 Program and Mentorship Update

Dear VIBE supporters,

The health and safety of our artists, staff and community partners remain our top priority. Social distancing resulted in an unexpected shift in VIBE’s programming and mentorship. Like many nonprofits, this sudden change has challenged our organization to restructure the ways that we offer our work.

Thankfully, our NExT: The Future of Art Exhibition opening took place on March 5th at Fort York National Historic Site. Check out the video below for a powerful reminder of the value of creativity, especially at this time.

The COVID-19 Pandemic struck right as we were scheduled to wrap up the first of two cohorts of our
Black Youth Mentorship Program, NExT. We reacted quickly, cancelling all remaining in-person offerings. Fortunately, support from our program funder, Canadian Heritage CSMARI, will allow VIBE to provide an extended mentorship opportunity for our current NExT participants and mentors. Participants will receive individual consulting sessions with top industry professionals, creative leaders and business experts, to help them pivot and remain inspired during these unprecedented times. 

Pushing forward with the same energy and focus, our team is in the process of on-boarding our second cohort of RBC Desire Lines Artists. We have connected these folks with their mentors, who will help skill-build and offer advice, and are shifting a wide offering of Professional Development workshops to virtual learning spaces. 

Stay tuned for updates from these artists, as well as their resulting work, showcased in Toronto Subway Stations in late 2020.

VIBE Arts continues to adapt to support our artists and the Toronto arts community. In only a short time, we have launched four new Online Programs, including VIBE BLOOM virtual art-making lessons and VIBE Makers, a unique artist content series, both of which will engage communities while providing meaningful employment opportunities to artists. 

If you haven’t already, please sign up for our mailing list, follow us on social media and spread the word. This is an unimaginable time, but one that we can get through together. 

Stay safe and take care,

Onika Powell
Artistic Director, VIBE Arts