Mathew Kagis

Name

Mathew Kagis

Jurisdiction

Vancouver

Running for

Parks Board

Party or Slate (if applicable)

Work Less Party

Funding

Do you know how much your local government invests in the arts? Would you commit to advocating for an increase in that cultural investment for arts, culture, and heritage in your community, within the capacity of your elected body?

Total budget? I'm not sure. I do know that the the COV & Vancouver Park Board have a little over $11 million in grants that are awarded yearly to not for profit arts & culture projects. Yes, I would advocate for more money and support for arts, culture and heritage.

Advocacy

If elected, will you take an active role on behalf of your local government in championing the growth of arts, culture and heritage in your community? Why?

Yes. Why? because arts & culture play a vital role in community building & fostering understanding between diverse cultural groups.

Education

Students with an education rich in the arts have better grade point averages and are three times more likely to get a degree. Will you commit to making the arts a critical component of every child’s education? If so, how?

Yes. How? Park Board already liaises with VSB 39 on many educational programs, including having students attend cultural events & visit art installations. I would look for & champion opportunities to expand these programs.

Cultural Growth

How will your local government maintain or grow its investment in cultural programs in your community?

As a Park Board Commissioner, I would work with all levels of our government to invest more in local arts. Specifically, in a jurisdiction I would have direct influence over, see my answer below re: space.

Cultural Spaces

Will you work to ensure access to affordable, sustainable cultural spaces for artists and arts organizations? If so, how?

Yes. This comes down to changing the financing model between City Hall & parks. With a more progressive city council in place at 12th & Cambie, I think this can be done. Once said extra funds are secured, I would lobby for subsidized space for not for profit arts & culture groups. I would also like to see an "Artist in Residence" program city wide in our community centers. Free space for an artist, some form of stipend and, of course, displaying the work they create.

Cultural Tourism

How do you propose to improve cultural tourism in your community?

Through more promotion, in multiple languages to more communities. Both through their local community papers and through larger organizations like Tourism Vancouver & Tourism BC.

How do you propose to attract or retain artists and cultural workers in your community?

See above answer re: Space.

Key Issues

What do you feel is the single most important issue relating to arts, culture, and heritage in your community, and what action will you take to address it?

Lack of arts & performance space. Again, see above answer re: Space.

Participation

How do you personally engage in the cultural life of the community? (e.g. involvement on committees, attending arts and culture events, etc.)

I attend local live music events, spoken word poetry events & live theater.