Media Release: Youth arts to enjoy £3 million boost, thanks to CashBack for Creativity



£3million boost for young people to develop career skills thanks to confiscated funds from criminal activity

TODAY, Thursday 17 July, 2014, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop joined young filmmakers, musicians and dancers who are developing their career skills thanks to the confiscated funds from criminal activity.

Ms Hyslop announced new funding of £3million for CashBack for Creativity, an increase of a third from the previous funding period, which will be distributed over the next three years through the Scottish Government’s CashBack for Communities programme, which redistributes the proceeds of crime to benefit young people.

In the last three years (2011-2013) £2.25 million has been invested in CashBack for Creativity, providing over 15,000 opportunities for young people in Scotland to participate in arts activities they would not have otherwise had access to.

The programme offers a wide range of activities and training opportunities which this year will be expanded to include all art forms including: dance, film, music, visual art, drama and literature, as well as digital media, for young people throughout Scotland, aged 0-25 years.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, said: “The real impact of CashBack on young people’s lives can’t be expressed by statistics or in stark monetary terms – CashBack changes lives.

“The CashBack for Communities Programme takes funds recovered from the proceeds of crime and invests them in back into communities, putting young people on a positive path in life by providing opportunities for them to take part in thousands of free activities and projects.”

Programme participants have included Yutsil Martinez who began in making short films with the Screen Education project in 2011.

Yutsil has gone on to star in the Screen Education film, Man With No Name, and was nominated for the Chris Anderson Award for Best Young Filmmaker 2013 (sponsored by the National Youth Film Academy).

As a result, he was awarded an acting scholarship at the National Film Youth Academy in London, after winning a Best Actor award at the event.

Yutsil said: “Participating in these projects and shoots has allowed me to find opportunities and meet other filmmakers and professionals in the field. The CashBack for Creativity Programme has been instrumental in helping me build my confidence and really develop my passion for working in the industry, and carve a future career for myself.”

Through the CashBack for Creativity Programme Paul Reynolds earned a placement at Edinburgh’s DanceBase where he discovered a passion for dance and performing arts.

Attending DanceBase and developing as a dancer, taught Paul new skills that he believes will see him through life.

He now has a love of being on stage and performing for a big audience describing the feeling and rush he gets from performing as “incredible”.

Paul said: “Only a few years ago I struggled to talk to people I’d never met before and I had little confidence and self-esteem, but with my participation at DanceBase through CashBack, I am now more confident and focused regarding what I want from life.”

Through her Cashback for Creativity experience with the Scottish Music Centre, Highlands based self-taught singer/songwriter, Jemma Tweedie, gained access to a professional music studio with an experienced producer who helped record her debut single All This Fear which is now available on iTunes.

Jemma was also able to work with Music+, enabling her to develop her knowledge and understanding of specialised areas within the industry.

She has been able to strengthen her skillset further having the opportunity to work with other musicians and producers of the same age and she is now working on creating new music with some fellow peers she met through the project.

Jemma said: “Without the CashBack for Creativity I would never have afforded such an opportunity being a full time university student on a tight budget. Following this, I completed a UK tour as a featured artist for Cafe Nero and have played numerous gigs and festivals across the country as well as being nominated as ‘best acoustic’ act at the Scottish Alternative Music Awards (SAMA’s) last year.

“The project provides fantastic opportunities to learn valuable information and develop skills with people who share similar interests. I think it is a very special programme as it has helped me achieve things I would never have been able to complete on my own. I would recommend it to anyone starting out or wanting to take their creativity further.”

Leonie Bell, director of Arts and Engagement at Creative Scotland, said: “Providing opportunities for young people to get involved in the arts, theatre and cultural activities can help improve confidence and broaden their horizons.

“Over the next three years, the CashBack for Creativity programme will enable approximately 20,000 young would-be filmmakers, dancers, musicians, artists, actors, writers and digital enthusiasts to work in professional settings with experienced practitioners, helping to inspire them to achieve their potential in their future careers.

She added: “I was delighted to meet a number of young participants who have been given the chance to work on interesting and educational CashBack projects and develop their personal, social and career skills.”

CashBack for Creativity is part of the wider Scottish Government CashBack for Communities programme. To date over £74 million has been made available to benefit over 600,000 young people in Scotland since CashBack for Communities began in 2011.

Twitter: @CB4Creativity #CashBack4Creativity


Notes to editors:

About CashBack for Creativity

CashBack for Creativity is part of the Scottish Government’s CashBack for Communities programme, which reinvests the proceeds of crime back into communities to benefit Scotland’s young people. In 2011, Creative Scotland was awarded £2.25 million from the CashBack programme to deliver a three year programme of dance, film and music activities for young people in communities of need across Scotland. Due to the success of the programme during this period, the programme has been awarded a grant of £3million, allocated through the CashBack for Creativity programme over three years from 2014-2017. The CashBack for Creativity programme will also be linked to the Youth Arts Development Hubs, the National Youth Arts Strategy – Time to Shine, the Youth Music Initiative and the Creative Learning Plan.
Twitter: @CB4Creativity #CashBack4Creativity

CashBack for Creativity 2014-17 Fund strandsYouth Arts Fund: The Open Arts Fund will be delivered in partnership with YouthLink and is based on the successful CashBack for Creativity Open Dance fund model. This programme will enable local organisations across the country to apply for funding of up to £10,000 to deliver a range of high quality arts activities (dance, drama, film, literature, music, visual arts) in areas where there is identified need.These will be short/medium term projects (up to a year) aimed at developing skills and interests and motivating young people to engage and sustain participation in positive activities.This programme will deliver a diverse range of activities across Scotland, through a wide range of art forms and partner organisations, increasing the level of provision and accessibility to high quality creative opportunities for young people.

The CashBack for Creativity Youth Arts Fund hopes to attract approximately 50 successful applicants each year from across Scotland with approximately 5,000 young people will engaged with annually as part of this fund. This fund will go live in August, please sign up for our newsletter for more details

CashBack for Creativity Strategic Fund:  The Strategic Fund will deliver a programme of learning and developmental activities to improve skills and confidence, whilst also raising aspirations and providing pathways for further learning, training, education and employment.

This fund will be delivered through a portfolio of selected projects in partnership with a range of organisations. This will enable the support of longer term projects and provide opportunities for more sustained engagement in the arts.

The CashBack for Creativity Strategic Fund hopes to involve approximately 1,500 young people each year, with an anticipated 80 per cent progressing into positive destinations including further education qualifications and employment.

Selected organisations have been invited to apply to the 2014 Strategic Fund based on geographic and strategic need. These awards will be announced in September 2014.

CashBack for Creativity Training and Employability Scheme: The Training and Employability Scheme will develop specially tailored Creative Industries training programmes in partnership with Further Education and Higher Education institutions across the country.

This programme will be delivered in partnership with the College Development Network and participants will be referred through liaison with youth agencies. Specially designed introductory courses and training specific to the Creative Industries as well as activities which will enhance participants’ employability and awareness of job opportunities available within the creative and cultural industries will be developed.

It is anticipated that this scheme will involve and three-to-four Further /Higher Education institutions and around 350 young people over the duration of the programme from all over the country. Details of the confirmed Training and Employability partners will be announced over the coming year.

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

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Helen Sim
Media Relations & PR Assistant
Creative Scotland
: 07801 226605
D: 0131 523 0019
T: 0330 222 3000

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