Advertising

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The Creative Circle Foundation launches to tackle advertising’s diversity issues

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The Creative Circle has announced the launch of The Creative Circle Foundation, as the longest running advertising awards body in the UK aims support greater diversity in the Britain’s creative departments of the future. Furthering its mission to unite Britain’s creative industry, the Creative Circle has launched the foundation as a way to actively address advertising’s diversity issues, giving those who are less privileged the opportunity to study advertising and break into the creative world. No academic qualifications are required, just an ability to demonstrate they can answer creative problems with creative solutions.

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Starting in September 2017, The Creative Circle Foundation will educate 20 creative students each year and relieve them from the pressure of affording expensive advertising courses. The foundation also plans to assist a number of students from outside of London to live and afford the ever-increasing rents in and around London. The Creative Circle has pledged that 100% of all membership fees, along with 10% of the award entries, and any profits from this year’s awards ceremony at the Roundhouse will go towards funding the charity foundation.

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Jeremy Green, CEO of The Creative Circle, said: “For years now, everybody in advertising has been talking about the need to address our ongoing diversity issues, but there have been very few, if any, attempts to actively do something about it. It’s time for Britain’s advertising community to put their money where their mouth is and support the emerging youngsters from around the country who need our help.”

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Jon Daniel, Creative Circle Foundation Trustee and independent Creative Director, said: “As a former advertising agency art director and one of only a handful of black creatives working in mainstream advertising in the 1990s, I understand only too well the challenges that can inhibit the realisation of a more trans-cultural and trans-gender creative department that better reflects our society. I am proud to be part of the unique and dynamic team that Jeremy has assembled to help tackle an unnecessary issue that has dogged the industry for far too long.”

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Trevor Robinson OBE, Executive Creative Director of Quiet Storm, said: “I think this is a great and exciting opportunity for me to be involved with the Creative Circle Foundation. The main reason for me is that coming from a working class, ethnic background, I’ve lived with and through quite a lot of what these kids will be going through themselves, which puts me in the right position to empathise with them. I’m fully aware there’s a great deal of talent – and many maverick individuals - out there, that can very well transform and elevate our industry. But they may never do so without our input. Finding and helping these people is my real goal here. I feel very motivated by this endeavour.”

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The announcement of The Creative Circle Foundation follows on from the launch of last year’s impassioned call for entries from the new Creative Circle President, Vicki Maguire (ECD of Valenstein & Fatt, formerly known as Grey London), who cited that one of the reasons she took on the role was to help provide practical and financial support to emerging talent. She explained: “There's a lot of talk about diversity and education at the moment. And that's all it is. Talk. The hand wringing and the panels have to stop. The Creative Circle Foundation is the UK industry getting its shit together. We thrive on creativity and creativity thrives on diversity. For the future of our industry please get involved.”

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She adds: "Talent is still the lifeblood of this industry and Britain still leads the world in spunk and swagger, but by and large, we’re still white, male, hetero hoorays. We’re still losing our most talented, but not to the Googles and the Facebooks of this world like we feared, we’re losing talent to London rents, college fees and hiring in our own image. We’re losing the funny kid who sat at the back of the class, the loud ones, the quick witted ones, the quiet ones who watched the world then drew it. We’re losing the women, the young mums, the guy who had to fund his way through college only to be faced with another couple of years of placements. We’re losing the chancers, the blaggers, the entrepreneurs. We’re in danger of losing the very thing that sets British creativity apart from the rest of the world. This talent is our calling card. Our lifeblood. That’s why I agreed to be President of Creative Circle. This show not only champions and awards work that hasn’t had to be put through the global filter. It provides practical and financial support for emerging talent.”

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To become a member of the Creative Circle or to book tickets to attend the Creative Circle Ball at the Roundhouse on May 17th, visit http://www.creativecircle.co.uk/.

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