Committed to the community cause

We’re committed to supporting organisations and partners in our community, and given circumstances over recent months that’s more important than ever.

15th October 2020

15th October 2020

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Estimated Reading Time 7 Minutes

James Bolton

James Bolton

James Bolton

Written by James Bolton

Whether it’s providing industry insight for the next wave of blossoming creatives from The Northern School of Art and Teesside University, or supporting charity partners High Tide and Headlight Project, we’re dedicated to building a better place to learn, work and live.

In fact, we’d go as far to say it’s one of our major responsibilities to raise awareness of the opportunities in our region and nurture the next generation of creative talent.

Moving with the tide

While the impacts of COVID-19 have proved challenging for us all, education and learning organisations have faced particular obstacles and uncertainty.

Through a series of programmes, High Tide Foundation connects business and education to help raise aspirations for young people in the Tees Valley. However given the implications of the pandemic, their usual range of hands-on lessons and site tours have had to be put on hold.

To combat this, they’ve evolved their business and delivery model to offer a unique online resource library covering career information, industry insights and behind the scenes videos. The Learning Hub features real life stories from corporate partners and business members, and it’s hoped that eventually courses will also be accessible online.

Overseeing this transformation is our MD and High Tide chairman, Mark Easby. Alongside Mark’s role, we’ve been providing creative and digital support for High Tide since their inception in 2012. Our latest activity includes building Learning Hub’s dedicated site page and providing industry insight into the world of a brand agency.

As well as articles covering the career journeys of Nathan and Matthew, Mark recently spoke with High Tide’s Owain Brennan about his story and job role.

Growing players and people

Kader FC are another local organisation close to our hearts. They’re a community football club where generations have grown up and developed; not just as players but also as people.

Following extensive investment in its community facilities and growth in numbers, Kader are setting the benchmark for other development clubs to follow nationwide. A new club crest and supporting identity was required to reflect this position, as well as the club’s status as a growing modern day football club where inclusivity and equality is key.

Alongside giving a nod to their Acklam roots, we created a much deeper and meaningful symbol that reflects their stature and values, while acting as a springboard for one of the North East’s leading junior football clubs to continue its development.

Kader have just kicked off the new season, with now more than ever being a time when community hubs are pivotal to our mental and physical wellbeing. Armed with their refreshed identity, we hope it’s another successful season on and off the pitch.

Inspiring the next wave of talent

Strong links between education and industry are key to developing skills and nurturing raw talent — that’s why we regularly welcome classes from the Northern School of Art and Teesside University, both of which offer the ideal stepping stones between education and employment.

Our studio tours allow students to step out of the classroom and into business, enabling them to get a feel for the day to day life of an agency. The tours also help raise awareness around some of the careers that are less spoken about within an education setting; roles such as account managers, studio managers and copywriters.

Our MD, Mark, said: “These visits and subsequent conversations play an important role in retaining talent in our local area.

"There’s a common misconception that to enter and flourish within the creative sector, you have to relocate to the north’s major cities or further afield to London.”

But as part of the Tees Valley’s wider creative and digital cluster, we’re perfectly placed to not only give the next generation the opportunity they need, but also the time, nurturing and skills to truly flourish and grow.

Another organisation providing experiences and opportunities for the next generation is the North East School of Shipping. In partnership with Stockton Riverside College and Tees Valley Logistics Academy, The Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers is offering the first such school outside of London. The dedicated shipping school will help develop a future skilled workforce that aims to tackle both current and future skills gaps.

Our role has seen us create an all new identity and website — setting the foundations to raise awareness and understanding of the sector, and putting the organisation firmly on the radar for those considering their future career.

Seeing us through to the post-COVID world

With uncertainty and unknowing still abound, we’ll all need to stick by the organisations that are closest to us in the months to come. Whether that’s something as simple as a like on Facebook, or volunteering time and resources, it’ll help keep our communities stronger, and more well-equipped for the challenges ahead.

If we can all do our bit, we’ll be in a good position to reshape and re-energise our region in the post-COVID world. Hopefully that's sooner rather than later.

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