Subsidies, grants, sponsoring, crowd funding, personal contributions, income... it's all about the money. At the end of the day, an artist can be very talented and hard-working, a project can really be beneficial for many, a show can be inspiring and workshops can be educational, if you can't write a good proposal, you might not have the funds to implement your ideas or never perform before an audience.
It is funny how fund raising actually is a job; people make money writing funding applications. They get a starting fee and a percentage, and they can make quite good money. Fair enough, because writing a proposal is an art in itself. An art that I am trying to master to realise my dreams to have artists from Malawi, The Netherlands and South Africa working together in Malawi in September this year. I love getting people together who share a passion like making music. Put musicians together and they want to make music. They only need me to facilitate it and the rest just happens like magic.
But to get these people in one room costs money, quite a lot of you are talking artists from 3 countries. For my master plan, travel costs add up to more than €40.000! That is for 11 people traveling from South Africa to Malawi, 11 people from Europe traveling to Malawi, staying there for 2 weeks with an allowance for food & drinks for everyone and accommodation need to be paid. Not the kind of money I have floating around. Also not the kind of money we can earn in Malawi, so we have no choice but to apply for funding. Which is kind of a shame, as I prefer to earn money instead of asking for money.
So I need to take this hurdle and read all details from various funds and make sure I do not make a mistake. I have been working on my budget for months, playing with numbers, explaining every line in the budget and trying to get sponsoring as well as asking for personal contributions from the artists involved. One more fund to go with a deadline in March and then all I can do is wait...