Regional Assets are for Everyone

RAD's initiative highlights the efforts assets are making to include everyone in their activities; funds accessibility projects; and requires funded organizations to have an accessibility coordinator and to publicize their accessibility information.

Digi Wave Assistive Listening system © Julie Goetz/RAD

RAD's initiative Regional Assets Are for Everyone highlights the efforts assets are making to include everyone in their activities and encourages the assets to make additional accommodations.

For many years, RAD has provided capital grants to fund accessibility projects to improve physical access at the regional assets, such as elevators, ramps, automated entrance doors, restrooms, and playgrounds.

As part of its grant application, the District requires that assets have a designated accessibility coordinator; requires that assets publicize their accessibility information; and requires assets with non-accessible venues to develop plans for improvement. The Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council  (a RAD-funded asset) has extensive resources on accessibility and inclusion, including workshops, funding, local disability service providers and community organizations.

In addition, RAD also has created a Special Projects category of funding, incorporating both Connections Grants and Accessibility and Inclusion Grants. Information about eligibility and other requirements is available on our Grants Applications and Management page.  Since 2009 and through 2019, RAD has provided nearly $2.7 million in Special Project grants. A total of $250,000 is available for 2019; applications are accepted on an on-going basis.

Since the initiative's inception, many assets have made improvements to physical spaces to enhance accessibility, and launched efforts to make programming accessible and inclusive (ticketing, web site, audio or video description, assistive listening, devices, programming for people with cognitive disabilities, etc.).

Grants approved in 2017 were:

A Connections Grant of $500,000 to the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust for its work with the African American Cultural Center to continue their collaborative effort to manage and to enhance programming at the August Wilson Center. The Trust, with its theater management expertise, is able to provide building management services, scheduling and booking of events, financial services, marketing, ticket sales and event support.

A Connection grant in the amount of $15,000 to the Three Rivers Young Peoples Orchestras for a joint chamber music project with the Pittsburgh Youth Symphony Orchestra toward the 4102,000 costs for salaries of the coaches, and a program manager and assistant.

An Accessibility grant of $6,300 to the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust to purchase and install two automated openers at the Byham Theater's main and box office doors.

A Connection grant of $25,000 to PICT Classic Theater for a collaboration with WQED for a portable seating system, as part of a commitment by PICT to rent office space and create performances at the studio for three years.

Grants approved in 2018 were:

The Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh received a $47,000 Accessibility grant to replace manual doors with automatic and motion-sensor doors at the Oakland campus.

Pittsburgh Festival Opera and Pittsurgh Youth Symphony received a $16,000 Connection grant to help fund a shared marketing position to assist each organization in improving their identity to ticket buyers, donors and supporters.

A grant in the amount of $34,000 to the Three Rivers Young Peoples Orchestras will support the initial costs of Youth Music Pittsburgh.

A grant in the amount of $50,000 to Chatham Baroque for costs associated with a merger with Renaissance and Baroque, the second oldest early music presenting organization in the U.S. Chatham Baroque has been managing R&B’s current concert season since December. Both organizations use historically-informed performance techniques and proposed that their work together will be “stronger together…having different series and revenue streams.”

Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council received a $34,000 grant for a diversity capacity building program to work with 75-100 arts organizations and funders to enhance diversity, inclusivity and accessibility.

Quantum Theatre received a $3,000 Accessibility grant to purchase assistive listening devices to accommodate six patrons at each performance.
The National Aviary received a $6,000 Accessibility grant to purchase accessibility items and for staff training to help serve visitors with disabilities. Items include braille signs, purchase of lightweight wheelchairs, noise cancelling headphones and tactile learning aids.

Please visit this page again for updates on the work assets are doing to accommodate and to increase participation by people with physical and cognitive disabilities, because Regional Assets Are for Everyone.  

The RAD offices and board meeting locations are fully accessible and open to the public. The Accessibility Coordinator for RAD is Diane Hunt, Senior Program Officer, who can be reached at (412) 227-1900 ext. 14, dh@radworkshere.org