Giving young people a taste of the creative industries


The winners of a unique initiative aimed at giving young people a taste of working in the creative industries has been announced this month.

Hackney Council joined forces with global names in the design and advertising industry, D&AD and Bartle Bogle Hegarty, to launch the NowCreate:Hackney project last month, aimed at giving young people a greater understanding of the design and advertising industries and how to take the next steps towards their future careers.

NowCreate set an industry-led brief to challenge young people, from a selection of secondary schools and colleges, to design a product or service to help tackle social isolation for older people living in Hackney. To help grow their ideas, agencies such as Hellicar and Lewis, Shift, Karmarama and GBH led participants through interactive workshops on ideation, creative thinking, narrative and understanding target audiences.

Each team of 14-18 year olds were asked to research and use their own knowledge to understand the audience and how their idea will meet the brief. A two minute film was then produced to present their ideas to a judging panel of experts.

Shortlisted entries were given the opportunity to experience the design industry first-hand by working with the award-winning agency ustwo to develop their ideas further. The final pitches were then delivered at their offices to representatives from Hackney Council and the creative industry.

The winners of the first NowCreate: Hackney are:

  • Hackney Community College: ‘Convo’ – an app that helps older people with hearing difficulties to meet similar people, arrange events and be more independent.
  • Skinners Academy: ‘Open Up Your School’ – a project that invites older people into schools to take part in activities with students such as art, history and computing to share experiences and to learn from one another.
  • BSix: ‘Culture Cook’ – a competition that brings a diverse range of young and old people together in pairs to share, learn and create recipes from their cultural backgrounds with the winning team making a cook book of their ideas.

Each of the winners will receive a D&AD annual, have their work profiled at key D&AD events coming up in the summer and be shortlisted for work experience placements with ustwo.

Cllr Guy Nicholson, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Hackney Council
This fantastic creative programme gave Hackney’s young people a unique opportunity to gain work experience in leading design and advertising agencies while thinking carefully about solutions to tackle serious social concerns.

The creative industries are a dynamic and growing part of the borough’s local economy. Projects like NowCreate are helping to equip the next generation of designers, photographers, film makers and copywriters with the skills and experience necessary to take that first step into a future career. I’m looking forward to seeing the future success stories from this innovative pilot project.
Cllr Guy Nicholson, Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Hackney Council