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Career development for under-represented groups

Cheryl Martin, Director in Residency Traverse Theater Theatre Director Cheryl Martin (pictured) will be joining the Traverse Theatre in June 2008 as Director in Residency, a post supported under a new scheme – the Equalities Career Development Fund. Cheryl has been based at Contact Theatre in Manchester for the last three years as Associate Director responsible for New Writing/New Work. She is also a performance poet and playwright, and ran a diverse and exciting programme of RAW Jams and Artists Labs at Contact as part of the new work development.

The Scottish Arts Council believes that the arts in Scotland should reflect and celebrate the diversity which exists in our nation. It should not be about producing art work for specific groups or communities but rather ensuring that people from all backgrounds have the opportunity to participate in the arts, whether as employer, arts worker, professional artist, curator, producer, marketer, audience member or someone who takes part in the arts.

The Equalities Career Development Fund is aimed at encouraging under represented groups including black and minority ethnic (BME) and disabled practitioners to build a sustainable career in the arts.

Six organisations (including the Traverse) are involved in the scheme and are in the process of recruiting for the posts. The roles vary from an artist/animateur working with DCA (Dundee Contemporary Arts), an arts management trainee at Ankur Arts in Glasgow and short-term residencies with the Edinburgh International Festival. 

Photo from Asylum, Theatre Workshop (2003)

Although anecdotal and research evidence shows that participation in arts activities by people from minority ethnic backgrounds and the disabled in Scotland has increased over the last five years, many of the barriers to full and equitable participation still remain including a lack of career opportunities.

This programme seeks to expand on the success of a traineeship programme first developed in 2002. The new scheme offers funding not only for traineeships for those at the start of their careers, but also residencies and fellowships for more established professionals.

Vacancies connected with this scheme will be advertised in our Job Vacancies section.

Information about future funding rounds for this scheme will be published in the Funding section of our website in due course.

related links
* Jobs in the arts in Scotland
* Funding for the arts in Scotland
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