Spotify announced it was launching its Spotify COVID-19 Music Relief project in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region on Wednesday in partnership with the Arab Fund for Arts and Culture (AFAC).
The project aims to connect the music community to organizations that can offer financial relief. The music provider will make a donation to Beirut-based AFAC to support its Artist Support Grant program which aims to help artists throughout the coronavirus crisis, according to a statement from Spotify.
“The majority of artists across the Arab region are already working in challenging contexts. The coronavirus crisis has mainly magnified long-standing inequalities and lack of social safety nets,” said Rima Mismar, executive director of AFAC in the statement.
Music performers in the Arabian Gulf have struggled since the coronavirus pandemic led to many opportunities vanishing virtually overnight, leaving the community on the verge of collapse.
“There’s no better message in such times than joining forces with other engaged partners like Spotify to ensure that our creative communities are sustained. By offering vital grant support in a very difficult and volatile time, we hope to ease the burden of loss of livelihoods and opportunities for artists,” Mismar added.
Spotify is also accepting donations on the COVID-19 Music Relief page that the company will match donations up to a total of $10 million as a collective contribution from the company.
“It is more important than ever to continue supporting and building [the music] community to ultimately help those most in need. We are proud of the global Spotify COVID-19 Music Relief project and are looking forward to witnessing its fruition here in MENA in collaboration with AFAC,” Spotify’s Managing Director for the Middle East and Africa Claudius Boller said in the statement.