VANSA and Arterial Network lobby NLDTF

In October of 2014 VANSA, together with Arterial Network South Africa, made an urgent submission to the National Lotteries Distribution Trust Fund (NLDTF) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) who oversee the NLDTF to urge changes to their draft amendments bill for funding to the arts.

The draft amendments bill was intended to address many major concerns in the way the NLDTF has been managing funds for charities, sports and arts and culture over the past years. As you may well know, the lotteries have been wracked by corruption and scandal and often take up to four years to approve and formalise an application. The draft amendments therefore made many good suggestions to tighten up procedures. However the draft amendments also made two very negative suggestions for the arts:

That Arts Funding provided by the lottery be significantly reduced. That arts organisations and sports organisations only be able to apply for one year of funding instead of the previously allowed three years. VANSA made a request to our organisational membership to support the urgent submission and it was supported by a number of arts organisations in South Africa including:

  • Greatmore Studios (Western Cape)
  • Kelektla! Library (Gauteng)
  • Numb City Productions (Eastern Cape)
  • KZNSA (KwaZulu Natal)
  • dala (KwaZulu Natal)
  • ROOM (Gauteng)
  • ARTEC (Eastern Cape)
  • LACA (Limpopo)
  • GIPCA (Western Cape)
  • Blank Projects (Western Cape)
  • North West University (North West Province)
  • Centre for Historical Reenactments (Gauteng Province)
  • Assemblage (Gauteng Province)
  • Oliewnehuis Museum (Free State Province)

In June 2015 it was announced that the submission, along with many others from organisations around the country, was successful in ensuring that arts organisations will be able to apply for three years of funding. This is a major win for the arts sector and the potential for longer term planning and sustainability that comes through three year potential funding. While this is an important win and a positive outcome of the submission, arts funding was still cut by 8%, the 8% being redistributed to sports development. This is a major concern for the arts, which otherwise struggles with receiving funding from many of the channels in which sport is relatively successful – such as corporate sponsorship.

VANSA has submitted a query to the DTI regarding whether research was conducted into funding streams for each sector as well as whether an impact assessment was conducted prior to this suggested amendment. DTI has indicated that no formal research was conducted and that no impact assessment was undertaken – ie. DTI did not check what effect this would have on the arts sector or whether sport required an increase in funding, more than the arts. DTI has committed to conducting assessments over a one and two year period regarding this issue, and VANSA will continue to lobby the DTI regarding this issue.

Thanks goes to all the supporting organisations and Arterial Network South Africa.

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