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Battersea Arts Centre Launches Three New Social Change Projects Led By Local Young People

Each of these Agents was chosen by a panel of experts in the creative industries to receive £2000 of seed funding.

Battersea Arts Centre Launches Three New Social Change Projects Led By Local Young People

Battersea Arts Centre (BAC) announces the launch of three new social change projects led by local young people (Agents). They aim to break down barriers faced by their underserved communities by providing access to careers in STEM, politics & theatre.

Each of these Agents was chosen by a panel of experts in the creative industries to receive £2000 of seed funding. They will also receive continued support from BAC and specialist advice from further experts to bring to life their ideas for positive social change in their community.

Now in its ninth year, The Agency's main purpose is to have a social impact on the following generations. The projects selected from the 2021-2022 cohort of Agents all support opportunities for local young people, including:

Wisdom Woman by Nabeelah (16) aims to inspire girls aged 13-18 from low-income households, who feel discouraged by parents and society, to study STEM subjects and go into professional careers in STEM.

The Civics Convention by Aliya (16) educates young people from ethnic majority backgrounds on the political landscape in England in order to utilise their voting rights and pass on that education to their families and local community.

Project C.U.B.E. I.T. by Mikhi (18) aims to increase confidence & resilience by getting young people into their local creative spaces to explore theatre, network and build transferable skills.


Nabeelah, 2021-22 Agent, said:
"I feel excited about my project Wisdom Woman, it will benefit a lot of young girls and give them an opportunity to learn about the different career opportunities available through STEM. This is something I needed at their age so I am proud to be able to create this project for them."

Aliya, 2021-22 Agent, said:
"My time with The Agency gave me my first awakening of the opportunities available to me at this age and I took it. I am grateful for the support I've received so far and I'm looking forward to what this can help me achieve."

Mikhi, 2021-22 Agent, said:
"Theatre has helped me learn how to show different sides of myself - to step out of my comfort zone and go after loads of professional opportunities. With the funding from The Agency, I'm excited to invite more young people to explore creative options and discover their abilities."

The Agency is a national programme that enables young people (ages 15-25) to take the lead in identifying their community's needs and creating social change projects to transform their local area. The unique Agency programme combines the best aspects of the cultural and business sectors, underscoring the Agents' natural capacity for creativity, insight, and innovation. BAC is The Agency's joint lead partner, along with Contact Manchester and People's Palace Projects. The pioneering programme is supported by The National Lottery Community Fund. Current partners include Energise Me, Southampton.

The socially conscious young entrepreneurs (Agents) live in some of the most underserved areas in the country. Working on their self-esteem, organisational, interpersonal and business skills, they develop their capacity to make a difference, changing their perception of their place in the city and opportunities open to them.

After the first 12 weeks of the programme, Agents pitch their creative ideas to a panel of tailored experts to be considered for funding and further support. This year, the London panel included alumni Agent Henrietta Imoreh, who now sits on Esmee Fairbairn's Care Leavers advisory panel and presented at its new strategy launch for social care reform. Henrietta also sits on the Board of Trustees for BAC and Agenda - an alliance for women at risk of social exclusion.

Henrietta Imoreh, panellist, alumni Agent and Campaigner, said:
"Being on the panel for The Agency this year was a huge privilege, to hear from such trailblazers who will be impacting their community and the next generation. Listening to all the presentations was super inspiring and reminded me that when young people have agency and power the world can change for the better."

Stella Kanu, panellist and Executive Director of LIFT Festival, said:
"The level of passion, skill and community-minded entrepreneurialism among all the Agents was inspiring and energising. Those who have received funding have wellbeing and equity at their heart and offered exciting access to opportunities for other young people. I'm excited to see where all of these projects go next."

Liz Moreton, Director of Creativity and Social Change at Battersea Arts Centre, said:
"The fallout from the pandemic and punitive austerity policies have exposed the inequalities within our society. Young people who are most impacted by these issues are also most anxious about the future world they will inherit. The Agency creates opportunities they've been denied elsewhere, and our priority has been to support young people to build back and enrich the local area with their bold ideas and their creative solutions at the forefront."

The Agency is generously supported by The National Lottery Community Fund and Kristian Gerhard Jebsen Foundation, with thanks to Rafe Offer for his contribution to BAC's Agents in 2022.

Battersea Arts Centre Launches Three New Social Change Projects Led By Local Young People

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