Diversity, Equality and Inclusion
UPAF’s 2020 Campaign Theme, “A Stage for All,” highlights a part of our work that might be new to you.
You may already know that UPAF provides sustaining support to 14 performing arts Member Groups providing entertainment excellence that strengthens our region. What you may not know is that UPAF has been working for years to expand the availability of exceptional arts experiences for everyone in our community, including children with limited or no access to the arts, people with disabilities and people from underserved neighborhoods.
The UPAF 2020 Campaign Theme, “A Stage for All,” represents our goal: a community where everyone has the opportunity to enjoy our region’s exceptional performing arts scene. The “Stage” represents the three kinds of performing arts UPAF supports — music, dance and theater — whether performed by professional musicians in a 2,500-seat theater or by students in a classroom. “All” means everyone — people from different walks of life, all ages, backgrounds, races, ethnicities, genders, those with and without disabilities — everyone.
UPAF has been dedicated to this work for years, including through our two community outreach programs, UPAF Bright Minds, presented by BMO Harris Bank, and UPAF Connect, presented by Northwestern Mutual. These programs provide arts education to more than 100,000 local children each year and provide arts experiences to community members who may not otherwise have access to the arts.
UPAF has launched an exciting one-year initiative — Kasey’s Fund — celebrating President & CEO Deanna Tillisch’s final campaign and her dedication to increasing performing arts accessibility. The initiative is named after Deanna’s daughter, Kasey — a great lover of the arts who has cognitive and physical disabilities. Kasey’s Fund furthers Deanna’s work with UPAF over the past nine years to ensure that everyone can experience the magic of music, dance and theater. Individuals making a new or increased gift to UPAF can choose to designate the new gift or increase to Kasey’s Fund, which provides funding for arts accessibility initiatives through UPAF Bright Minds and UPAF Connect.
The benefits of experiencing the arts are well known. The performing arts improve GPAs and standardized test scores, shorten healing time, and inspire hope, improving life outcomes regardless of socioeconomic status. The arts lift us out of everyday experiences, foster connection and inspire creativity.
Together, we create “A Stage for All” in Southeastern Wisconsin. Please donate today to help everyone in our community experience the transformative power of the arts.