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Scottish Government emergency funds for Glasgow youth arts

Emergency funds from the Scottish Government through Creative Scotland are enabling youth arts and music organisations to roll out new activities and initiatives for young people in the Glasgow area. 

Drake MusicNational Youth Choir of ScotlandNational Youth Orchestras of Scotland and Toonspeak Young Peoples Theatre are among 18 youth music and wider youth arts organisations receiving a share of £1,053,000 to deliver a range of local and national projects, all of which target priority groups of children and young people and provide important work for freelance artists. 

Thursa SandersonChief ExecutiveDrake Music Scotland said: “We are delighted to have been offered an award of £61,880 for Sound Explorers, a new programme of online activity devised by Drake Music Scotland. It responds positively to the changed learning landscape for young people with additional support needs - offering an interactive and fun way to make music. 

“It will directly tackle the lack of access to music making for young people with disabilities and additional support needs caused by the Covid pandemic removing the barriers for those isolating at home and those in the classroom."   

Edward Milner, Chief Executive, National Youth Choir of Scotland said: “This funding will support the recovery and renewal of our youth arts provision. Our 'Loving Learning Through Music' programme will use music to build fundamental numeracy and literacy skills and enthuse the learning of children, including those who are deaf or hearing impaired. Working in up to 10 primary schools in areas of multiple deprivation we aim to narrow the attainment gap, build teachers' confidence in using music to support wider learning outcomes and provide vital work to freelance creative practitioners.” 

Jack JohnsonDevelopment ManagerNational Youth Orchestras of Scotland said: 'We work with over 600 of the most promising young musicians from across Scotland each year, and the NYOS Ambassadors programme provides paid work experience and training to recent graduates and alumni of the orchestra. This funding will support an expansion of this programme to help us reach more young people, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, providing the important first stepping-stones of a career in these challenging economic circumstances.' 

Hazel WotherspoonChief ExecutiveToonspeak Young People’s Theatre said: “This funding from Creative Scotland will support us in delivering our post-Covid renewed programme which will see us, for the first time, delivering work fully for 0-25's, creating new opportunities for progression and ensuring that young people, regardless of their needs, status or background, can be fully part of the vibrant creative culture of Scotland.” 

Opportunities for young people are also being provided on a nationwide basis through other Fund recipients including Engage, Film Access Scotland, National Piping Centre, National Youth Choir, Scottish Book Trust, Scottish Brass Band Association, Scottish Music Centre, Scottish Youth Theatre and Youth Theatre Arts. 

Culture Secretary, Fiona Hyslop said: “Youth music and youth arts organisations across Scotland are playing an important role in the lives of young people during these difficult times.   

“This funding will support these organisations to expand their work and provide creative opportunities to young people as well as work and income for the artists and practitioners working with them through these projects.” 

These awards are the first to be announced from the Scottish Government’s £3million funding package for Youth Arts.  Further announcements will follow regarding recipients of at least £1.2million through the Access to Youth Arts Fund, £700,000 Small Grants Scheme and £50,000 assigned to the Time to Shine Nurturing Talent Fund.   

Iain Munro, CEO, Creative Scotland said: “All the emergency funds currently being delivered by Creative Scotland on behalf of the Scottish Government are vital in addressing the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. I’m particularly pleased that we are able to announce today the first recipients of this Youth Arts funding which will reach some of the children and young people most adversely affected by the pandemic and provide important work for freelance artists whose opportunities have been so severely impacted by Covid-19.”    

The full list of Fund recipients: 

Organisation (Trading name) 

Local Authority Area 


Drake Music Scotland 

Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Highland 





Fèisean nan Gàidheal 

Highland, National 


Fèis Rois 



Film Access Scotland   



National Piping Centre 



National Youth Choir of Scotland   

Aberdeen, Glasgow National 


National Youth Orchestras of Scotland 

Glasgow, Stirling 


Scottish Book Trust 



Scottish Brass Band Association 



Scottish Music Centre 



Scottish Youth Theatre 



Sistema Scotland 

Dundee, Aberdeen 



Edinburgh, Fife 


Tinderbox Collective 

Edinburgh, Perth and Kinross 


Toonspeak Young Peoples Theatre 




North Lanarkshire 


Youth Theatre Arts Scotland 





Toal: £1,053,393.00 


*Starcatchers led consortium working in partnership with Imaginate and Lyra.  

Updates on all emergency funds are being published regularly on this website and publicised through media and social media communications. 

Photograph: Anne Binckebanck, courtesy of Drake Music 

Contact Information

Katya Speight

Media Relations & PR Co-ordinator

Creative Scotland



Notes to editors

The Youth Arts funding announced today is part of a series of emergency funds from the Scottish Government being delivered by Creative Scotland to help mitigate the immediate impacts of Covid-19 on the creative and cultural sector. The emergency funds announced by the First Minister on Friday 28 August are as follows: 

  • £5million Hardship Fund for Creative Freelancers, including a fund for freelancers working in Screen, which opened for applications on Monday 26 October. The Fund - which has been enhanced to £8million from an additional £3milion from the Scottish Government announced on Tuesday 3 November - reopened for further applications on Tuesday 10 November. 
  • £15million Culture Organisation and Venues Recovery Fund which opened for applications on Thursday 17 September with a deadline of Thursday 24 September. 348 applications were received totalling over £22million. The first tranche of £11.75million made to 203 recipients were announced on Thursday 5 November.  The second tranche will be announced on Thursday 19 November. 
  • £3.5million Independent Cinema Recovery and Resilience Fund, which opened for applications on Monday 14 September with a deadline of Monday 5 October. Recipients were announced on Tuesday 3 November. 
  • £3.5million additional funds for Creative Scotland’s Open Fund which is open for applications to individuals and organisations on a rolling basis.  
  • £1.5million for the Culture Collective programme (part of the £5million Sustaining Creative Practice Fund, referred to in the Scottish Government’s Programme for Government), supporting organisations employing freelance artists to work in and with communities across Scotland. The programme launched on Tuesday 3 November. 

Previously announced funds from the Scottish Government are: 

The Scottish Government emergency funds being administered through Creative Scotland are part of the Scottish Government’s announcement of Friday 28 August of £59million emergency funding for culture and heritage. That funding comes from the £97million in UK Government consequentials for the culture and heritage sectors. 

This is in addition to the £23.5million previously awarded through the Creative, Tourism, Hospitality and Hardship Fund and £128million through the Pivotal Enterprise Resilience Fund

More information about Covid-19 funding and resources can be accessed via FindBusinessSupport.gov.scot, and through Creative Scotland’s Resource Directory for COVID-19. 

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and The National Lottery. 

Follow Creative Scotland 

Twitter: twitter.com/CreativeScots 
Facebook: facebook.com/CreativeScotland 
Instagram: instagram.com/creativescots 

Media Contact: 

Claire.Thomson, Media Relations & PR Officer 

Funding Enquiriesenquiries@creativescotland.com