Youth Arts Fund Small Grants Scheme

Support provided by Creative Scotland

What does this involve?

The purpose of this fund is to help organisations fund projects involving freelance youth arts practitioners. Organisations will distribute funding for artist led projects in early learning, schools, and other family support and community settings from January 2021. 

Organisations and local authorities can apply for up to £50,000 to distribute grants of £500 – £5,000. These grants are for freelance artists/creative practitioners (locally, regionally or nationally), across all artforms, to deliver artist-led youth arts activities. Artist-led means artists take the key lead in the design and delivery of collaborative projects.

Your application must clearly demonstrate that your organisation:

  • has the capacity and knowledge to manage and disperse a small grants fund by March 2021
  • has a track record in supporting youth arts activity
  • is networked with – and able to communicate the opportunity to – professional youth arts practitioners
  • will provide appropriate support and networking for the freelance artists/creative practitioners involved
  • has capacity to monitor and report on the grants, including equalities, diversity and inclusion data

Priority will be given to projects that work with at least one of the following groups of children and young people:

  • are living in poverty or residing in areas of social and economic deprivation.
  • are experiencing, or at risk of experiencing, harm and neglect
  • are looked after (as defined by the Children (Scotland) Act 1995) and care leavers (as defined by the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014). 
  • are in the early years (0–5) of their life
  • are from Black and/or Minority Ethnic backgrounds
  • have a disability and/or additional support needs
  • are at risk of offending or have previously offended
  • are young carers (as defined by the Carers (Scotland) Act 2016) and/or young parents
  • are experiencing, or at risk of, homelessness or who have been homeless
  • are experiencing mental ill health

Am I eligible?

Creative Scotland are inviting applications from: 

  • local authorities
  • arts organisations
  • third sector organisations

Organisations do not need to have an arts focus but they do need to have a track record in supporting/ delivering youth arts activity and the capacity to deliver a small grants fund.

What does this cost?

It is free to apply.

How long does this take?

The key dates are as follows: 

Thursday 24 September 2020: publication of fund guidance, and application form: 

Monday 2 November 2020: deadline for applications

Wednesday 9 December 2020: all applicants advised of decision

January – March 2021: Small Grants Scheme launched

Important information

Your organisation may also be eligible to apply for the Youth Arts Access Fund.  However, you will need to make a strong case to show the need for additional funding. If you are intending on applying to the Small Grants Scheme and the Access Fund, please get in touch with Creative Scotland before submitting an application. 

The overall budget for this fund is £700,000 with at least £500,000 for music and up to £200,000 for wider art forms.

It is not a requirement that you support artists working in music. 

Organisations can apply for a grant of between £10,000 and £50,000. The focus of their fund can be local, regional or national. The grants they distribute to individual freelance artists/creative practitioners should be between £500 and £5,000.

All applicants can apply to cover 100% of their costs but are welcome to include additional partnership funding.

Next steps

Visit the Creative Scotland website for more information and to apply.

Support provided by Creative Scotland

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