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‘Marginal’ from Comics Youth will give underrepresented young people the chance to shape their own narratives, with an aim of platforming voices all too often excluded from mainstream culture.
The 12-month mentoring initiative from the multiple award winning community interest company will provide young people with 1-2-1 coaching, training, mentoring, and guidance in a range of skills to inspire them as creators, and as leaders of their own publishing house.
Launched in conjunction with the Big Lottery Foundation, ‘Marginal’ will be based from Comics Youth’s Fourth Floor home of 76 – 78 Lord Street and will inspire a diverse set of young people to develop skills in illustration, character design, writing, business development, and editorial management.
The goal of the programme is to change the landscape of UK culture by giving young people a chance to see themselves as characters in, and potential authors of, the books and comics they read.
The one-of-a-kind initiative will nurture stories that reflect current and real youth issues in the UK during a time when cuts to arts funding have meant that many of these voices are going unheard. ‘Marginal’ will ensure that all sectors of society are given the opportunity to tell their stories, and in a manner which gives young people agency and pride over their narratives.
As such, the initiative is particularly committed to amplifying the voices of young people underrepresented within comics and print media, including those from LGBT, BAME, and working class communities; young people experiencing mental ill-health or special education needs; and looked after young people and those who have experienced inequality.
In the first year there will be 20 slots available on the programme, with a budget of £5,000 with which participants can expand their narratives. The new grant, from the UK’s biggest funder of community activity, is part of the The National Lottery Community Fund’s £800,00 Lived Experience Leaders Pilot Programme.
The initiative aims to better embed ‘experts by experience’ in all aspects of an organisation’s operations, creating opportunities for people with first-hand experience to be at the forefront of decision making.
Joe Ferns, UK Knowledge and Portfolio Director at The National Lottery Community Fund said: “Thanks to National Lottery players, people with lived experience will use their unique expertise to lead social change and help their communities to thrive. We know that supporting those with first-hand experience to become leaders is a key enabler for civil society to do more, help more people and for our sector to have a greater impact.”
To find out more visit www.TNLCommunityFund.org.uk
Comics Youth was founded in 2015 and is a creative community organisation led by young people, for young people. Our aim is to empower youth across the Liverpool City Region to flourish from the margins of society: Harnessing their own narratives, finding confidence within an inclusive community, and developing the resilience to succeed on their own path.
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