A Guide to 2014 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme

The Leisure and Cultural Services Department (“the Department”) is inviting applications for the “2014 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme”, which aims to enhance the development of community art and to encourage local artists and arts groups to organize outreach arts activities to bring the arts into the community.

Objectives


The main objectives of the Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme are:

(a)

To promote the performing arts by inviting local performing arts practitioners to act as Community Cultural Ambassadors so as to develop an interest in the performing arts among the general public or different community groups, inspire creativity, enrich artistic experience and appreciation, and promote arts development in the community.

(b)

To encourage local performing arts practitioners to move out of their familiar working environment and make contact with the community through organizing intensive outreach programmes rich in community cultural characteristics so as to widen their audience base and further develop their creative skills, talents, planning and implementation skills.

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Eligibility


Applicants should meet the following requirements:

(a)

Who is Eligible?

(i)

A locally registered non-profit-making performing arts group which, in the past three years, has been active in the promotion of a specific art form in Hong Kong, and possesses actual experience in public performances of a high standard.

(ii)

In the case of an ensemble of artists, the majority of its members must possess valid Hong Kong Identity Cards. Key members should be active in the performing arts in the past three years, with rich experience and good standard in public performance.

(b)

Art Forms

The proposed project should cover one or more performing art forms, for instance:

(i)
(ii)
(iii)
(iv)
(v)

Chinese opera / operatic singing
dance
music
theatrical arts (including drama, mime, magic, puppetry, etc)
multi-arts

(c)

Types of Activities

Any creative performing arts projects which may be one or a combination of the following types of activities:

(i)
(ii)
(iii)
(iv)
Note :

performance
workshop (with a minimum of 20 participants in each class)
lecture, demonstration or episodic performance
exhibition
Activities which are strictly training classes will not be considered, as these have already been offered under other cultural activities organized by the Department. Applications for organizing animateur schemes similar to those being implemented in schools by the Department will be accorded a lower priority.

(d)

Nature of Activities and Venues

(i)

The proposed activities should be related to the performing arts with a focus on arts education and audience building. The target audience could be the general public or a specific community group, such as residents in a particular district, members of a particular community, people served by non-profit-making organizations, e.g. senior citizens, young people, children, women or persons with disabilities. To encourage community participants to be more actively involved in the project, more interactive elements should preferably be introduced as far as practicable. The activities may be designed to cater for the interest of the residents of specific communities to enhance their sense of belonging, with special cultural heritage features of the communities taken into account. In addition, in order to promote performing arts more effectively in the community, high quality and sustainable activities with further development potential are welcome.

(ii)

The activities will mainly be held in venues other than the Department’s civic centres, such as shopping malls, community halls, elderly centres, parks, piazzas, pedestrianized open space / streets, etc. to attract appreciation and participation from the general public, passers-by or specific community groups. Some of the activities, if considered suitable, may be arranged to take place at available facilities of the Department’s civic centres with a view to expanding the scope of the Scheme’s activities. Historical sites may also be considered. Activities which are suitable for students or for families may be held at schools, but such activities should be open to the public as far as possible and should not exceed 20% of the overall number of activities of the proposed project.

(iii)

The activities should be open to the public. The series of proposed activities should conclude with a finale in such forms as a performance, exhibition or video screening, with participants of the activities to be involved.

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Proposed Activities


Each applicant may submit one proposal for either or both of the following two types of activities. However, each year the Department will only consider one of the proposals submitted by the same applicant:

(a)

Audience building / arts education activities that are designed for particular community group(s) or organized at specific district(s), e.g. arts activites specially designed by arts groups / arts practitioners to reach out and interact with target groups in the local community and focused on establishing a connection with the daily lives of the community groups in order to achieve in-depth arts development in the community; or

(b)

Audience building / arts education activities that are designed for the general public.

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Selection Criteria and Mechanism


The following factors will be taken into account in assessing applications:

(a)

The attractiveness, artistic merit, concept, originality and feasibility of the proposed project; whether it can widen the audience base and enhance the participants' arts appreciation ability; whether it is possible to have interaction with the community / community groups; its potential for further development; and the anticipated coverage of participants in the community, etc.

(b)

The artistic standard of the activities held by the applicant in the past; the ability to communicate with the participants; organizational ability and experience and whether the applicant is a budding arts group / arts ensemble with good potential which has never been selected under the Scheme.

(c)

In order to provide opportunities for more local arts groups to develop their audience base, the Department encourages local budding arts groups / arts ensembles which have never taken part in the Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme to submit quality proposals.

(d)

The Department also welcomes arts groups / arts ensembles which conducted quality projects with remarkable effectiveness under the 2013 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme to apply again for joining the 2014 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme with enhanced proposals for further sustaining and developing their previous community audience building and cultural development efforts.

(e)

To further promote arts development in the community, the Department welcomes applicants of the 2014 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme to submit proposal of extension project for the 2015 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme concurrently. The Department will assess and grant approval-in-principle to extension projects with sustainable and further development potentials. If the proposed extension project submitted by an applicant is not accepted, the Department will consider the applicant’s proposal for the first year together with other applications for selection of the 2014 Community Cultural Ambassadors. Arts groups/ artists selected for the 2014 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme and granted approval-in-principle for the 2015 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme should submit proposed project details and budget for the 2015 Scheme to the Department by the end of June 2014. The Department will assess the project details and budget of the 2015 project taking into consideration of the Department’s financial resources.  The Department reserves the right to decide whether to approve implementation of respective extension projects in 2015.

(f)

Financial viability and cost-effectiveness of the proposed budget.

(g)

The nine major performing arts groups receiving grants from government will not be considered.

(h)

Applicants with grants from other government departments or the Department to carry out other large scale and / or long-term arts development projects will be accorded a lower priority.

(i)

Should the key personnel (including artistic director, producer, director, principal artists, co-ordinator, etc.) of a project also participate in the applications submitted by other arts groups and assume similar responsibilities, the project concerned will be accorded a lower priority.  Nevertheless, as it is common in the current arts scene for freelance local arts practitioners to join hands with other artists to pursue artistic projects, the Department may at its discretion relax relevant restrictions, on condition that the applicant will state which projects of other arts groups their members would be taking part in and the roles played, and show to the satisfaction of the Department that the members concerned can manage to be involved in more than one project without compromising the effectiveness of the projects proposed.

(j)

Proposed activities which merely serve the purpose of rehearsal or preparation for an event to be presented by the applicant will not be considered.

(k)

Consideration will also be given by the Department to the demands of the community for various art forms.

(l)

If the organizer can establish a partnership with district organizations, district councils, other government departments, public organizations or the commercial sector to jointly promote arts development in the community and through which additional resources or sponsorship can be obtained, the project will be accorded a higher priority.

To facilitate efficient processing of all applications, applicants should submit adequate relevant information as far as possible. Supplementary information submitted after the application deadline will normally not be considered. In order to enable the assessors to have a better understanding of the applicants and their proposed activities, applicants are advised to submit adequate information detailing the concepts and main ideas of their proposed activities, and supplementary video materials of the activities they held in the past.

Eligible applications will be assessed in accordance with the above selection criteria by the Department’s Art Form Panel members of the relevant art forms as well as officers responsible for programme planning. Recommendations on the shortlisted applicants will be submitted to the Art Form Panel on Community for review. The selection of Community Cultural Ambassadors and allocation of budget will be approved in accordance with the Department’s prescribed mechanism for engagement of artists. All those participating in the selection and budget approval process are required to declare in writing that there is no conflict of interest between themselves and the applicants.

To balance the variety, coverage and resources allocation of different projects, the content and proposed budgets of the projects are subject to adjustments if proposed by the Department and agreed by the selected applicants. Engagement of selected applicants is only confirmed upon a contract being duly signed by both parties.

Applicants who submit applications will be deemed to have agreed that the assessment of applications is at the sole discretion of the Department and that the decision of the Department on the application results is final.

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Financial Arrangement


The budget ceiling for each project is $0.8 million per year to cover expenses for production, publicity, copyright royalty charges, programme and administration (inclusive of insurance for the arts group’s employees and a Public Liability Policy of Insurance to be kept in force during the period of the project in the sum of not less than HK$10,000,000 for any one accident and unlimited number of claims to ensure protection for all participants of the project including but not limited to workshop participants). Actual funding for each project depends on the reasonableness of the detailed breakdown of each item of expenditure for the proposed project, which should be completed within a period of 12 months. The maximum administrative expenditure should only be 30% of the approved funding, and may cover project-related staff costs and administrative expenses but not the procurement of capital equipment or recurrent overhead expenditure such as office rental or equipment maintenance.

To facilitate the implementation of the project, funding may be allocated by phases based on the Community Cultural Ambassador’s needs as in the following mode :

(a)

30% of the approved funding to be paid one month prior to implementation of the project;

(b)

Another 30% of the approved funding to be paid upon the successful completion of 30% of the project and the submission of the first progress report to the satisfaction of the Department;

(c)

Another 30% of the approved funding to be paid upon the successful completion of 75% of the project and the submission of the second progress report to the satisfaction of  the Department;

(d)

The remaining 10% of the approved funding will be paid after the successful completion of the yearly project and the submission of the final report (which should include an audited financial statement by a qualified accountant) by the Community Cultural Ambassador to the satisfaction of the Department.  The final report should be submitted within 3 months after the completion of the whole yearly project.

Any unused funds of the project should be returned to the Department.

Community Cultural Ambassadors must implement the project in accordance with the details and dates as planned and as set out in the Agreement.  The Community Cultural Ambassador has the responsibility to take the initiative to submit by the set dates the project reports and audited financial statement, failing which the Department reserves the rights to withhold or suspend payment for the next installation.  If the Community Cultural Ambassador submits application for the Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme again in future, the assessors will take into account if the Ambassador has any record of lack of discipline in administration and financial management, breach of the Agreement or any other irregularities in their consideration of the application.

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Terms and Modes of Co-operation


The Community Cultural Ambassadors should be responsible for all matters related to the project and play a major role in the planning, administration, publicity, production and implementation of the proposed activities. Should overseas guest artists be invited, both the number of overseas artists and the proposed activities taken up by them should not be more than 50% of the total number of artists and activities for the whole project. Moreover, prior consent of all guest artists must be sought before they are included as participating members in the application submitted.

The Community Cultural Ambassadors should arrange intensive publicity and promotion at the district level to attract the targeted groups. The Department will arrange general publicity for the Scheme, such as promoting the Scheme through the media and arranging publicity at the Department's civic centres. The Community Cultural Ambassadors should cooperate with the Department in the general promotion. In all publicity materials prepared by the Community Cultural Ambassador, the project should be billed as one under the “Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme” presented by the Leisure and Cultural Services Department.

The recruitment of activity participants must be open and fair. Priorities should be given to those who have not taken part in the activities of the Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme or other similar projects organized by the Department in the past.

In launching the “Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme”, the Department expects to play a more active role than that of a funding body and would follow through with the Scheme’s development. Close contact will be maintained with the Community Cultural Ambassadors. Apart from noting regular progress reports from the Community Cultural Ambassadors, the Department’s responsible staff and art form panel members will be making visits to various activities to observe the progress of the projects and the response of the participants. Observations made will be discussed with the Community Cultural Ambassador for follow-up action.

Should the Community Cultural Ambassador wish to accept and acknowledge sponsorship for the project, prior consent should be obtained from the Department. The Department’s guidelines on acceptance of sponsorship should be observed. As a general rule, tobacco-related sponsorship or sponsorship which may affect the Department’s image will not be accepted.

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Follow-up Arrangements for Project Participants


Building on the work of the Community Cultural Ambassadors, follow-up activities may be arranged for project participants to channel their interests to other similar activities organized by the Department, including:

(a)

Invitation to register for the Department’s mailing lists of programme pamphlets;

(b)

Introduction to cultural activities organized by the Department; and

(c)

Referral to friends schemes of other local arts groups.

Any other suggestions by the Community Cultural Ambassadors are most welcome.

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How to Apply


Application forms may be obtained from the following office by mail, by fax or in person, or downloaded the application form here:

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Download DOC here

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Audience Building Office
Leisure and Cultural Services Department

Address:

Podium, Administration Building
Hong Kong Cultural Centre, 10 Salisbury Road
Tsimshatsui, Kowloon

Enquiries:

2268 7367   Fax: 2370 8295



The completed application form, together with the relevant supporting documents and information, should be sent in triplicate to the above office by post or in person no later than 6 pm on 3 June 2013. If the application form is completed on computer, please also enclose a CD Rom containing the soft copy of the completed form. Please specify “2014 Community Cultural Ambassador Scheme” on the envelope. Applications sent by post will be checked against the postmark. Late applications will not be considered.

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Notification of Application Results and Enquiries

Applicants will be informed of the application results around December 2013, but the Department may adjust the timing at its discretion subject to the application response.

For enquiries, please contact:

Audience Building Office
Leisure and Cultural Services Department
Tel. No. : 2268 7363  Fax No. : 2370 8295

23 April 2013