Step into the Arts, a youth-led fund launched in partnership by Youth Scotland and Creative Scotland last March, has awarded £65,000 of funding to young people across the country to pursue creative arts projects and experiences.
Designed entirely by a team of young grantmakers ages 14–25, the fund was created to encourage young people to get involved in the arts, particularly those who face barriers to accessing them.
Since its launch, the fund has been met with great excitement and received more than 100 applications, with young people ages 5–25 from across 22 Local Authorities enthusiastically pursuing both its First steps into the arts grants (for young people with little or no experience in the arts who wanted to explore them further) and its Next steps into the arts grants (for young people with experience in the arts looking to improve their practice).
After careful review, the programme’s young grantmakers awarded funding to 45 unique creative projects (with 22 First Steps grants and 23 Next Steps grants), focusing on supporting those projects that would most help young people break through barriers to the arts and that would make a meaningful difference to the artists and their communities.
For some young people, the grants will support them to take lessons to explore or develop their skills in all kinds of artistic expression, from fine-art painting and fashion design to drumming and special effects makeup.
For others, grants will provide equipment or other practical support to get them started with specific projects, including everything from an educational film about bullying, to a podcast about the experience of being an immigrant in Scotland, to a Wild West-style play promoting positive masculinity.