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 Compassion Fund

The Compassion Fund Strategy explored the creation of a fund that could be offered alongside production or operating budgets to support a range of care needs; for example, personal support, travel, and childcare.

Here’s what we learned:

Boundaries can be helpful for everyone (“here’s what we can offer…”).
Transparency and privacy in the application and distribution of funds.
Being mindful of the additional administrative weight.
Clear communication and outreach is important.

To learn more, see Balancing Act’s Creating a Compassion Fund resource.

And check out these conversations with Compassion Fund Strategy Partners:

Obsidian Theatre Company

Buddies in Bad Times Theatre

Want to learn about how you can integrate a Compassion Fund into your organization? 

Below is a complete list of our Compassion Fund Strategy Partners and their pilot projects over the last three cohorts of the Level UP! program (2021-2024).

Each company links to their partner page, where you can learn more and explore the resources they created through Level UP! You’ll find template application forms, language to invite participation, and more!

To access all Resources For Organizations created by Level UP! partners, sign up for a Membership.

Nightwood Theatre | 2021-2022

Pilot Project: Piloting a compassion fund for contracted artists

Obsidian Theatre | 2021-2022

Pilot Project: Childcare funding and supports for artist caregivers

Buddies in Bad Times Theatre | 2021-2022

Pilot Project: Compassion Fund for performers and creative team of White Girls in Moccasins

Tapestry Opera | 2021-2022

Pilot Project: Developed a Compassion Fund for contracted artists and arts workers

Aanmitaagzi | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Providing transportation, food, and coordination for Elders’ Storytelling Luncheons

Aluna Theatre | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Compassion Fund for the rehearsal and performances of Rubble by Suvendri Lena

Curtain Razors | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Curtain Razors investigated relational pathways of offering and providing support

Lifting as We Climb | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Creating two modes of care support: Stipend and ‘Acts of Care’

Native Earth Performing Arts | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Offering childcare subsidy toward supporting festival producers on term contracts

New Harlem Productions | 2022-2023

Providing a range of care support for artists.

Nova Dance | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Piloted a compassion fund for the large cast of their production Svāhā!

Playwrights Guild of Canada | 2022-2023

A Compassion Fund for PGC members who have caregiving responsibilities. The fund intends to help with financial barriers to completing writing projects during 2023.

Shakespeare in the Ruff | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Fund to support a range of artist needs throughout the process of Richard Three

Stratford Festival | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Piloting a Compassion Fund for Langham Directors’ Workshop, Developing a Compassion Program

Théâtre La Seizième | 2022-2023

Pilot Project: Exploring a Compassion Fund with internal staff

Bad Dog Theatre | 2023-2024

Pilot Project: Compassion fund for contracted artists and teachers

Chromatic Theatre | 2023-2024

Explore provisions around maternity leave for part-time staff member.

Dancing Hands Theatre | 2023-2024

Care support on tour and mentorship for Deaf artists

Imago Theatre | 2023-2024

Pilot Project: Care Fund, Commitment to Care document, and audience supports

lemonTree Creations | 2023-2024

A Compassion Fund to the creative team as an acknowledgment of the violence and specifically the sexual violence in the script.

Mocean Dance | 2023-2024

To pilot a Compassion Fund for the upcoming research project during winter/spring as a way to address barriers to participation such as childcare/caregiving costs.

For Ensemble Collective | 2023-2024

Pilot Project: Developed a Compassion Fund to support convening and the labour of pitching and setting up connections with more funders and collective contributors.

rice and beans Theatre Society | 2023-2024

Pilot a compassion fund that is available for all artists, so that support is available for childcare, transportation, physiotherapy, etc.

Soulpepper Theatre Co | 2023-2024

Offering an equal access Wellbeing Fund to all artists working on Soulpepper-produced productions and workshop.

Theatre Passe Muraille | 2023-2024

Piloting a Compassion Fund that would be widely available to our artists and cover access and caregiving needs that may come up during our rehearsals and production periods.