Our Annual Reports provide an overview of all of our yearly activities, goals, programs, and financials. Our 2021 Annual Report covering activities from July 1, 2020, to June 30, 2021, is complete!
This period in our organization’s 33-year-old history was not without challenges due to the pandemic, but we were determined to continue serving our mission and membership.
We began this fiscal year (July 1, 2020) with a forecast loss of $350,000. Against all odds, by June 30, 2021, after layoffs and waiving all membership dues, we broke even thanks to the overwhelming success of our “pay-what-you’re-able” virtual conference, applications to every imaginable source of emergency funding, and the overwhelming generosity of the folk community.
Immediately after announcing the cancelation of our in-person conference, we shifted our priorities to producing virtual content accessible to our community far and wide. We now have over 30 webinars that we’ve proudly produced and co-produced with partners like Global Toronto and the International Indigenous Music Summit.
We playfully renamed our Artist in Residence program “Artists in (Their) Residence” for this year, where we invited ten US-based artists to partner with artists from around the world to meet online and create new songs reflecting on the pandemic.
To top it all off, we hosted our very first virtual conference, Folk Unlocked, which drew in 4,250 conference and public showcase attendees. This virtual edition of our usual event enabled us to reach new audiences and was our most diverse and equitable program presented to date.
Its success led us to make the decision to produce virtual content alongside our in-person event at our 2022 conference (which you can register for here!)
We also launched a grant program (another first for us!), called The Village Fund, to support the hard-hit folk music community. Initial fundraising, combined with the proceeds of public tickets to online Folk Unlocked showcases, enabled us to distribute $25,000 in grants to 50 individuals in need from eight countries in the first round of applications.
It has certainly been a unique year for us, and we’re proud to continue this important work. We couldn’t have done it all without the support of our community.