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By Outreach Coordinator Cilladean Hopkins

October 11, 2023 (Jackson, Ca)—The Amador County Arts Council is proud to announce the winners of the Supportive Funding Grants. Four grants of $2500 each are awarded to local artists and cultural practitioners. This year nine fabulous grant applications were received from 501c3 non profits, groups, and individuals. A blind review of the applications were made by members of an Advisory Committee, composed of citizens, artists, and cultural practitioners from all parts of Amador County, and the Amador County Arts Council approving the funding based on alignment with the mission and strategic goals of the arts council. The four grants categories this year are Indigenous Arts & Culture, Safe Space, Roots, and Youth Arts.

Aziel Sandman, an Argonaut High School student who is a digital artist and character designer, received the Safe Space grant to support their work with the local 2SLGBTQAI+ community. Their project consists of a suite of original anti-bullying characters promoting togetherness and supportiveness. These characters and their messages will be shared throughout local social media platforms.

Deja Douglas, a media artist and college Junior at Sacramento State University, received the Roots grant to further her work celebrating Amador County’s rich cultural heritage, including Black and Mexican rural creatives such as herself. She will be creating a permanent digital storyplace for youth and young adults to document rural lives and celebrate interculturality throughout Amador’s non-homogeneous cultures, especially rural Black and Indigenous Youth along with all cultural heritages.

Miwok elder Richard “Razzle Dazzle” Ragudo received both the Indigenous Arts and Culture Grant and the Youth Arts Grant to support his work with the local Miwok community and diverse lives, cultures, and heritages of local youth. Razzle Dazzle is a citizen of the Ione Band of Miwok and will work with local Miwok Youth to create and restore tribal regalia supporting greater youth engagement in traditional activities and gatherings.

Since 2010, the Amador County Arts Council has been providing essential funds through the Supportive Funding Grants for creatives throughout Amador County, especially those living in or serving the bottom quartile of the Healthy Places Index. The Board of Directors aims to grow the amount of funds we give away to the community each year. We envision an arts council that supports 100% of the creatives throughout our rural spaces. Aziel Sandman, Safe Space winner, says, “This grant genuinely means a whole lot to me. To be able to support my own community and give them the support that I know they need and deserve. It really just makes me feel good, feel happy,”. We need your help raising funds so that we can pay artists to make more art in Amador County. Get involved today learn how to donate or become a volunteer.

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