New partnership keen to Spark interest

A NEW partnership project being led by Ignite! and Impact Arts, and supported by Scottish Borders Council and YouthBorders, is being offered to young people aged 16-25 with an entrepreneurial spark.

Funded by Creative Scotland, ADVANCE Spark is a new programme to support and accelerate the emerging talent in 16–25 year olds in the Borders.

It aims to help them realise their creative business potential, encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship through the creative industries. The project would like to hear from young people who are passionate about doing something that has a positive impact on the world but don’t know how to make a career out of it, or who have an idea but don’t know how to make a living out of it.

Jay McAllister, Regional Programme Manager in the Lothian and Borders for Impact Arts said: “We’re not just looking for people who want to be the next Jamie Oliver, Steve Jobs or Banksie.

“As long as you can show that you’re passionate and motivated, then don’t worry if you haven’t settled on what exactly you want to do.

“Once accepted onto the ADVANCE spark programme, the early sessions will include activities to help young people figure out their individual strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes, skills and passions. We anticipate that people on ADVANCE spark might discover different opportunities from those they had originally imagined. If they apply saying you want to do one thing but end up loving doing something else, then that’s great too.

“The programme is free and we will be interviewing towards the end of this month. We really look forward to meeting young people and hearing their ideas.”

Rick Hall, Director of Programmes at Ignite! commented: “Most young people starting out will change jobs between 12 and 20 times in their working life, and in five years time many will go into jobs or start businesses that haven’t been invented yet. We want to equip young people with the kinds of creative thinking and resilience to make the most of these changes.”