National Arts Council’s (NAC) opened two co-working spaces at Goodman Arts Centre (GAC) and Stamford Arts Centre (SAC). The dedicated spaces provide arts freelancers with enhanced access to shared services, as well as facilitate collaborations and networking among the freelance arts community. A third co-working space at 42 Waterloo Street will open in the second half of 2020.
NAC’s Arts Resource Hub (ARH) initiative’s priority is to increase sector-wide support for freelance arts professionals, who make up about half of the sector, according to the 2016 Arts & Cultural Employment Survey conducted by NAC. The ARH initiative, meant to be a first-stop platform for arts freelancers, addresses this need through various resources aimed at enabling freelancers to develop sustainable careers in the arts.
The co-working spaces at GAC and SAC address the community’s desire for a space to connect and network with like-minded peers. Available for trial use by ARH subscribers since 6 January 2020, the spaces offer Wi-Fi, hot-desking facilities and printers, as well as meeting rooms that can be booked for discussions. The third space at 42 Waterloo Street is envisioned as a home for arts freelancers – for them to attend workshops, networking programmes and events, tap on office resources, incubate ideas, connect and collaborate with other arts freelancers.
In addition to the ARH website’s job portal and resources on areas from financial planning, legal knowledge, and insurance coverage to training programmes, a regular series of free talks offered by partners and industry professionals has been ongoing since November 2019. Topics covered included getting started as a freelancer in the creative industry, financial planning for the self-employed, and ways to build emotional resilience.