Donate

Resources for Organizations

Download the free Adobe Reader to view and print portable document format (PDF) files.

Alternative Formats: All VSA MN documents are available in multiple formats (such as large print, Braille, etc.). Just contact our office!

Accessibility

Accessibility Symbols

Link: Accessibility Symbols

Disability Access Symbols
These symbols advertise your accessibility to employees, customers, audiences, and anyone else who needs access to your building or offices. Examples of places you’ll want to promote your accessibility include: advertisements, newsletters, conference and program brochures, membership forms, building signage, floor plans and maps.

Arts Accessibility Planning Guide

This self-survey tool, created by VSA Minnesota and the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council in 2016, guides an arts group or venue through its policies, programs, facilities, events and access plan to identify its accessibility strengths and what may need attention in order to remove barriers to participation. The tool is a spreadsheet that includes instructions, a three-part survey and a sheet where you will construct an access plan based on the findings of the 3-part survey. A separate 20-question Questionnaire and other Access Plan resources are also available on this website.

Working with ASL Interpreters in Performing Arts

This guide was updated in 2016 for the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council and is also available on their website as the MRAC ASL Interpreter Guide (http://www.mrac.org/resources-mrac-applicant-groups). It offers suggestions of best practices of providing American Sign Language interpreters for events, planning ahead, finding interpreters, signing a contract, reaching an audience. If you have additional questions or seek a list of ASL interpreters, please contact VSA Minnesota, 612-332-3888, 800-801-3883, or email access@vsamn.org.

Accessibility Training Topics

Arts organizations are changing — audiences, staff, volunteers, visiting artists, auditioners, donors, budgets, access plans and new projects. As we age, move, transition and try to serve our communities better, one realm where it’s important to be up-to-date is in being accessible, welcoming and inclusive to our growing number of patrons with disabilities — physical, mental, cognitive.

As the state organization on arts and disability, VSA Minnesota can help you each step of the way by offering an accessibility training on any of the topics in this file, or on your choice of topic to serve ushers, docents, front-of-house people, board, box office, website or other personnel. We (or other consultants) can speak at Rotary lunches, board meetings, staff retreats or workshops. Contact us!
Phone: 612-332-3888 or 800-801-3883
Email: access@vsamn.org or info@vsamn.org

Checkpoints for Access Questionnaire

An arts organization/venue can fill out this 20-question survey to cover the basic checkpoints of how you are accessible to people with disabilities. A more extensive Arts Accessibility Planning Guide is also available. Both were prepared by VSA Minnesota in 2016-17.

12-Step Plan to Access for Arts Organizations

This 12-Step Plan was developed by Deborah Lewis, a national accessibility consultant, to help arts organizations identify their weaknesses in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and to create a plan that will complete their access needs. It can be used with other tools on this website.

Sample Access Plans

If you are thinking of updating your arts organization’s access plan, get some ideas from this Boilerplate Access Plan Draft, or ask for any of 88 Access Plans listed. Many were submitted as part of applications for ADA Access Improvement Grants, available from VSA Minnesota. Email access@vsamn.org or call 612-332-3888 to request specific plans. Other Access Plan resources are also available on this website.

Design for Accessibility: A Cultural Administrator’s Handbook

Link: Design for Accessibility: A Cultural Administrator’s Handbook

Designed to help organizations not only comply with Section 504 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, but to assist in making access an integral part of planning, mission, programs, outreach, meetings, budget and staffing. Copies of the book can be ordered through the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies web site. The publication can be downloaded at no charge in Portable Document Format (PDF).
NOTE: The NEA Office of Accessibility has been working on an update for years. Call them to ask when it will be ready: 202-682-5567.

Board of Directors/Volunteers

Accessibility Training Topics

Arts organizations are changing — audiences, staff, volunteers, visiting artists, auditioners, donors, budgets, access plans and new projects. As we age, move, transition and try to serve our communities better, one realm where it’s important to be up-to-date is in being accessible, welcoming and inclusive to our growing number of patrons with disabilities — physical, mental, cognitive.

As the state organization on arts and disability, VSA Minnesota can help you each step of the way by offering an accessibility training on any of the topics in this file, or on your choice of topic to serve ushers, docents, front-of-house people, board, box office, website or other personnel. We (or other consultants) can speak at Rotary lunches, board meetings, staff retreats or workshops. Contact us!
Phone: 612-332-3888 or 800-801-3883
Email: access@vsamn.org or info@vsamn.org

Grant & Other Opportunities

Metro ADA Access Grant Final Report Form

ADA Grant final report generic form

Metro ADA Access Grant Recipients 2010-17

This summary lists 66 Twin Cities arts groups that have been awarded 126 grants to increase access to the arts for people with disabilities, thanks to funding from the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, which voters approved in 2008. In the eight years through June 2017, VSA Minnesota has awarded $1,468,000 in ADA Access Improvement Grants for the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council. The next grant deadlines will be in late 2017 and early 2018.

2017 ADA Access Improvement Grants for Metro Arts Organizations

Apply for up to $15,000 for a project that will make your Minnesota nonprofit arts organization’s facilities or programs more accessible to people with disabilities.