Media release: CashBack for Creativity – over £250,000 awarded to creative and cultural activities for young people across Scotland

Justice Secretary Michael Matheson meets with local youngsters involved with CashBack For Creativity projects at WHALE Arts in Wester Hailes. One of 32 community based arts projects across the country supported to receive over £250,000 through CashBack F

OVER a quarter of a million pounds will fund creative projects across the country to support the Scottish Governments aim to tackle inequalities experienced by Scotland’s young people, in the Year of Young People 2018.

The CashBack for Creativity Open Fund, administered by YouthLink Scotland on behalf of Creative Scotland has awarded a total of £252,000 to 32 community-based arts project across the country.

The fund offers a fantastic chance for young people to access a range of high-quality arts, screen and creative industries activities including filmmaking, fashion, design, arts and crafts, dance creations, music making, and creative writing.

CashBack for Creativity is funded through the Scottish Government’s CashBack for Communities programme, which redistributes the proceeds of crime to benefit young people.

Justice Secretary, Michael Matheson, said:

“Today’s investment of £252,000 in 32 CashBack for Creativity projects underlines the Scottish Government’s commitment to tackling inequalities across Scotland by helping young people reach their full potential in life.

“Since 2008, we have committed £92 million to CashBack and other community programmes with £6.3 million invested in CashBack for Creativity initiatives. I am keen to ensure that such opportunities continue to be provided to help young people develop skills for the workplace, gain confidence and find employment.”

Laura Black, arts officer – Cashback for Creativity, Creative Scotland, said:

“The CashBack for Creativity Fund provides essential creative opportunities to Scotland’s young people to raise their aspirations for future employment and build confidence and self-esteem while also having fun in their communities.

“The first round of the CashBack for Creativity Open Fund supported over 34 projects, providing access to hundreds of young people who are now producing, creating and exhibiting their own work. For many this is the first time they’ve been able to access creative opportunities.”

Jim Sweeney MBE, CEO YouthLink Scotland, The National Agency for Youth Work said:

“We want to celebrate young people and the youth workers who make a difference. YOYP 2018 is all about celebrating their talents and achievements, and the contribution young people make to their communities and the wider world.

“CashBack is truly unique, Scotland is the only government within the UK that is using cash seized from criminals and putting it back where it should be, right at the heart of communities, to enrich and invest in our young people through creative opportunities through great youth work.”

The funding was announced during a visit to WHALE Arts, where Justice Secretary Michael Matheson met with local youngsters involved in an Indian Dance Project, supported through the programme and delivered in partnership with Dance Ihayami, that will enable young people in Wester Hailes to participate in Indian dance, choreography, costume and set design and music activities.

WHALE Arts chief executive, Leah Black, said:

“The WHALE Arts team are delighted to have received funding from Cashback for Creativity for the Inspire Indian Dance Project in partnership with Dance Ihayami which will allow young people to participate in Indian dance, choreography, costume and set design and music activities at WHALE Arts Centre in Wester Hailes, Edinburgh.

“We are pleased to welcome Michael Matheson to WHALE, in partnership with Dance Ihayami, for the launch of the CashBack Open Fund, and look forward to introducing the dancers and young people involved, and discussing the wider community-led creative programme that takes place at WHALE and across Wester Hailes.”

YouthBorders, who received a grant of £9,800, are another of the many projects to benefit. Youth Work Lead for the project, Clare De Bolle, says the money from CashBack is invaluable to their work with local youngsters:

“YouthBorders and Sound Cycle are delighted to receive CashBack for Creativity Open Funding to support the development of the Youth Music Forum and a second album of young Borders’ musicians. There are no barriers, anyone can take part with lots, little or no experience, or with just a love of music and a desire to try new things.

“We are tremendously grateful for CashBack support to underpin what has been achieved and what we can achieve going forward, all with the aim of providing and promoting music and creativity during Year of Young People and beyond for the Scottish Borders.”


For media enquiries and further information please contact:

Notes to editors:

About CashBack for Creativity

Creative Scotland has been a delivery partner of the project since its inception in 2008 and over 40,000 young people across the country have participated in the programme so far.

The programme runs until March 2020, and distributes £2.6m across two strands:

  • £1.5m has been awarded to 15 projects, each receiving up to £120k, to support a three-year programme of activity through the Targeted Fund.
  • £250,000 has been awarded to support 32 community-based arts projects in this the second round of CashBack for Creativity Open Project Funding, with individual proposals being able to access awards of up to £10,000, to deliver up to 12 months of creative activity for young people aged 10-24. The first round of the fund supported over 34 projects, providing access to hundreds of young people who are now producing, creating and exhibiting their own work.

For full details of projects that have been supported so far through the programme please visit:



High Life Highland (£4,765)

A youth arts programme including a variety of taster sessions for at risk young people living in the Highlands, where they will have the opportunity to engage in a range of fun and creative learning activities including filmmaking, fashion design, arts and crafts, healthy eating, dance creations, junk/upcycling, music making, creative writing and poetry.

GAADA (£9,800)

PORTABLE PRINT is an exciting initiative to engage young people in Shetland who are often excluded from school or work in a productive, positive, and empowering experience to create print-based artworks. The young people accessing the activity have a variety of complex needs and the project is working in collaboration with Disability Shetland to ensure PORTABLE PRINT suits the current gap for a skills-based, social, and local space in which participants can feel safe and create.

An Lanntair Ltd (£8,798)

An Lanntair is working with the service users of two partner organisations to engage disadvantaged young people in the Western Isles in their ‘Las’(Gaelic)/Ignite festival in October 2018. A skilled artist educator will deliver weekly half day sessions from April – December 2018, and the young people participating will have the opportunity to assist in running the festival.


Front Lounge (£8,475)

JAMBEE is a summer graffiti festival where young people can express their creativity and interact with the wider community. Leading up to the festival, young people will have the opportunity to engage in a series of sessions hosted by seasoned local graffiti artists, where they can learn the skills to design and safely make quality graffiti art.

Shaper Caper Ltd (£9,080)

Hubbub – a creative dance and digital project for young people aged 10-24, aiming to create cohesion and provide the participants with social agency by celebrating the arts and linking these activities to other local initiatives via connections with the creative industries thriving in Dundee, such as the gaming and arts sectors.


Falkland Stewardship Trust (£10,000)

Journeys into Literacy is the continuation of a literacy programme offering young people opportunities to connect with their community and the landscape they live in through workshops with skilled facilitators in prose, poetry and song.

Gallatown Bike Hub (£4,890)

Funding for Gallatown Bike Hub to deliver a 12-week open holiday programme of arts activities comprising graffiti, photography, pottery and craft in the Fife town.


Macrobert Arts Centre (£10,000)

New Creative Voices (NCV) is designed to increase participation in the arts for young people in Clackmannanshire, through a diverse year-round programme of participatory classes which includes dance, drama, visual art and filmmaking.


Granton Youth Centre (£5,796)

A drumming programme for Young People aged ten-to-24, living within the North Edinburgh areas of Granton, Craigroyston, Muirhouse and Pilton. The programme will deliver Friday evening sessions for two age groups (ten-15 and 15-20) up until March 2019.

North Edinburgh Arts (£8,150)

Working with Who Cares? Scotland (WC?S) and local partners to run a pilot project with and for looked-after children in the Pilton/Muirhouse area of Edinburgh in Summer 2018. Activities will involve music/rap/DJing, dance and movement, film making, animation, storytelling, visual art and crafts.

WHALE Arts (£10,000)

Inspire Indian Dance Project is a partnership project with Dance Ihayami and WHALE Arts that will allow young people to participate in Indian dance, choreography, costume and set design and music activities at WHALE Arts Centre in Wester Hailes, Edinburgh.

Lyra (£9,960)

Young Artists is a weekly programme of performing arts classes at Artspace, Craigmillar, for those who have a talent/enthusiasm for the performing arts and who would most benefit from improved creative skills, greater self-esteem and aspiration.

Tinderbox Project (£6,336)

Weekly out-of-school music sessions for young people of different ages, backgrounds and abilities in the Muirhouse area. The hub includes a live band, singing and song writing sessions, samba and percussion, a studio and production group, and a drop-in area for children and young people who want to try out various instruments.

The BIG Project (£3,315)

Weekly drama workshops for young people aged 10-16 years living in Broomhouse, Edinburgh, working towards an end of year production to be performed to the local community.


The Sound Lab (£9,820)

The Bridgeton Beatmakers programme is an innovative, inclusive music and creative tuition syllabus, which aims to break down the barriers that young people in one of the most deprived communities in Glasgow face in accessing music.


Out of Harm, will use storytelling and visual art to enable ten-11 year-olds to understand self-harm and the reasons for it. The project will support young people to explore their feelings and experiences within the context of metaphors in stories. The workshops, based in Quarriers, Ruchazie Family Centre, offer an out of school, high-quality arts experience.

PEEK – Possibilities for Each and Every Kid (£9,242)

PEEK are providing access to quality music workshops to further develop a young person’s choir in North East Glasgow.

Impact Arts (Projects) Ltd (£9,908)

The Young Gallery Project for children and young people in the North East of Glasgow works in partnership with schools, health, social work and third sector services. The programme includes weekly workshops with professional artists and will culminate in a festival event in Dennistoun where all works will be displayed.


Neighbourhood Watch Scotland SCIO (£10,000)

Through artists residencies, this project will establish a creative collaboration between artists, young people and their communities, in areas of complex and multiple social deprivation, and aims to support Scotland’s Year of Young People. The project will be delivered within the areas of Possil, Westercommon, Hamiltonhill and Easterhouse, Glasgow, delivered in weekly sessions at Young People’s Futures, with an end of project performance to take place at Platform.

Ignite Theatre (£9,800)

Happiness Project!; a series of weekly drama/photography and film making workshops focussing on physical and mental health for young people in the community of Knightswood in North West Glasgow.


Youth Community Support Agency (£8,525)

Get In:Formation 2- is a continuation of a pilot project where BME young women come together in South Glasgow to explore issues of importance to them through dance and art.


Paisley YMCA (£8,947)

Establishing Renfrewshire’s first digital fabrication studio, a DIY environment where young people can gather to create, invent and learn using digital technology as a tool to build and design. The studio will support young people aged 18 and under to develop skills in product, art paint, engineering and lighting design that tap into a young person’s creative side as an artist or maker.

Scottish Youth Film Festival (SYFF) (£4,800)

SYFF are collaborating with East Renfrewshire Youth Intensive Support Service (YISS) to work with care-experienced young people in a week-long filmmaking project in 2018. Participants will be taught film theory and offered practical film making experience in order to make their own film, which will be screened at the Scottish Youth Film Festival in November 2018.


Y Sort-It (£10,000)

CreActive youth groups delivered in the three main areas of West Dunbartonshire, once a week during school term time. Activities include drama, film making, music, and developing a community mural.


Getting Better Together Ltd (£10,000)

A continuation of a programme of music workshops for local young people living in North Lanarkshire, delivered weekly, to build music skills, confidence and self-esteem.

Reeltime Music (£3,543)

A high-quality music and media programme for young people in North Lanarkshire who find it difficult to access such opportunities.


Capall Dorcha Theatre Company (£3,609)

Providing young people with professional development in theatre over an intensive week-long series of workshops, with performance and filmed elements led by current industry professionals. At the end of the week, young people will have the opportunity to perform on stage at the Harbour Arts Centre in Irvine.


yipworld (£10,000)

Funding to support East Ayrshire-based yipworld in delivering their Four Seasons of Art project in celebration of Scotland’s Year of Young People. Each Season will operate over a ten-week period, at weekends, and will focus on children’s lives by capturing their reflections on the present and the future, depicted through visual art. The story boards and mood boards created throughout the year will be displayed to show case and celebrate being young in Scotland in 2018.


Young Peoples Services (£6,000)

Development of a street arts production for young people aged 13-25, culminating in the participants performing at Youth Beatz festival 2018. Participants will learn about street theatre, how to perform in public spaces, how to interact with audiences, character creation, and movement work. During each workshop they will have an opportunity to test out ideas in the streets, before going on to perform at the festival.

Wigtown Festival Company Limited (£6,706)

Board will see young people gain hands-on experience with the support of professional artists and writers in June. It will culminate in a public exhibition of their work in Dumfries during the summer and at Wigtown Book Festival in September.


Philiphaugh Community School (£6,365)

A sculpture making project for children aged ten-to-13 living in Bannerfield in the Scottish Borders; taking inspiration from the land surrounding the Bannerfield estate, young people will be assisted by a local sculptor to make a new piece of work, which will be sited in the local area.

YouthBorders (£9,800)

Sound Cycle, a project enabling young people from the Scottish Borders to access, enjoy and participate in music of all kinds, growing in confidence, gaining new skills and friendships and building self-esteem and community engagement.

About YouthLink Scotland

  • YouthLink Scotland is the national agency for youth work. It is the voice of the youth work sector in Scotland.
  • The Youth Work Sector in Scotland is worth £656 million to the economy.
  • It is a membership organisation and is in the unique position of representing the interests and aspirations of the whole of the sector both voluntary and statutory.
  • YouthLink Scotland champions the role and value of the youth work sector, challenging government at national and local levels to invest in the development of the sector.
  • YouthLink Scotland represents over 100 organisations, including the 32 Local Authority Youth Work Services and all major national voluntary youth work organisations, which support over 350,000 young people in achieving their potential.
  • YouthLink Scotland promotes a positive image of Scotland’s young people and seeks to promote their value to communities and society.

About Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information about Creative Scotland please visit Follow us @creativescots and

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