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Launch of our 2020 Impact Report

Thanks to our Network of volunteers young people got access to 372 creative and cultural opportunities last year.

Neil Griffiths, Arts Emergency CEO & co-founder

It goes without saying that the past year has been profoundly challenging. For young people making decisions about their future things really could not have been more disruptive or uncertain. But volatile times are when communities have to come together, and our new Impact Report shows Arts Emergency is a community that provides invaluable assurance, advice and opportunity on a larger scale than ever before.

We’ve been described as a lifeline by teachers, young people and volunteers which is something we’re very proud of.

94% of participants said being part of Arts Emergency had a positive effect during lockdown

During our evaluation we were told over and over again that our project has given people a sense of hope and as a result 93% of our Young Community feel that the careers they want are still attainable.

One of the major highlights of the year was the work of our new Community team who shared 372 cultural and creative opportunities and set up 75 remote work experience placements. They also launched our very first Youth Collective, working with eight young leaders organising around community, campaigning and care.

Of course many of our new recruits weren’t able to get as many crucial in-person cultural experiences as those in previous years because of the lockdowns. But our long-term offer of support and belonging has been mentioned in feedback a lot. I think in a world where funding is scarce, work is precarious, arts and humanities in higher education is further reduced, and jobs in the creative and cultural industries are at an all-time premium I’d be glad of Arts Emergency too if I were starting out.

This report is a wonderful example of what can be achieved when you build a community around positive solutions and a shared sense of purpose and fairness.

With new university graduates set to be hit hardest by the emerging recession, and school closures widening the attainment gap for younger students, it’s on all of us to hold open the doors to a life and career in the arts. On a personal level I’m just really glad we’ve been able to have such a positive impact and be so useful at a time like this.

Regular giving still makes up a third of our income and is the reason we’ve been able to plan for the future and be responsive to the needs of our young people. If you’re able to, please give your equivalent of £5 a month.

The small team that runs Arts Emergency has never been busier than we have been this past year, and we want to thank all of the young people, mentors, donors, teachers, network volunteers, colleagues and cheerleaders who gave what time and energy they could to this wonderful and important cause of ours.