Creating a rich and varied events programme is a central aspect of the Themed Year approach. Events animate our places and spaces, provide exciting new hooks for media as well as impetus for participation, engagement, and event-led tourism.
The YS2022 programme provided a strong opportunity for artists and creative talent to create and showcase new work. A total of 6,620 opportunities were created through funded events for artists to reach new audiences.
There were two events funding programmes and one non-funded ‘partner’ events programme for YS2022. Across the three programmes more than 350 events/event programmes were delivered. Activity took place in all 32 of Scotland’s local authorities, in every calendar month.
It was clear when scoping YS2022 that the theme provided an especially effective opportunity to reach diverse communities across Scotland. This led to us working in an effective close partnership with Museums Galleries Scotland, with support from National Lottery Heritage Fund and Scottish Government, to create a new Community Stories Programme.
Community Stories Programme
This new programme sat alongside the existing ‘Open’ and ‘Partner’ events programmes. It was developed specifically to support community facing organisations and community groups to take part in the Year. Groups spotlighted the unique stories that mattered to them with the creation of new events, activities, and programming.
An initial budget of £100,000 was maximised more than nine-fold to £928,000 with additional support from partners to meet demand. Funding was awarded to 180 grantees. A ‘wrap-around’ programme of promotional support and skills development was also created.
An independent report from Wavehill evidences that the programme helped bring communities together. It highlighted Scotland’s diverse voices across a range of storytelling forms. It advanced Intangible Cultural Heritage capture, and created multiple benefits. These included contributing to community wellbeing, skills development, developing new partnerships and opportunities, and creating thriving, resilient communities.