Voluntary ArtsArea: UK (home-based)
Deadline: 5pm, Friday 12 June 2020

Voluntary Arts promotes active participation in creative cultural activities across the UK and Republic of Ireland. This encompasses everything from traditional amateur arts and crafts (singing, dancing, drama, quilting, painting, writing etc) to digital arts and creative cookery and gardening – from knitting a jumper to playing the guitar, making a short film to arranging flowers – from self-governed constituted amateur arts groups to informal get-togethers and individual everyday creativity – from the ‘serious amateur’ to the occasional participant.

Across the UK and Ireland there are approximately 63,000 constituted voluntary arts groups, regularly involving more than 10 million people. Voluntary Arts was created in 1991 to provide a universal voice for the voluntary arts, recognising the huge contribution that creative cultural activity makes to people’s wellbeing – and the wellbeing of communities. Creative cultural pursuits bring people together, teach them new skills, boost confidence and bring about a sense of achievement, identity and place.

Today Voluntary Arts has 20 staff and more than 60 volunteers working across all five nations in the UK and Republic of Ireland. It provides information and advice services, engages with local and national decision-makers to help create an environment where cultural participation can flourish, runs annual events, campaigns and training and delivers, and supports the delivery of, projects to develop participation in creative cultural activities.

For the past ten years Voluntary Arts has been developing a series of partnership projects with BBC local radio stations. These Up for Arts projects use the power of radio to raise the profile of cultural participation and inspire more people to get involved. Through Up For Arts, we have broadcast lapsed musicians rediscovering their instruments, crafters filling woodlands with felted funghi and crocheted caterpillars, choir masters delivering therapy with song, and people keeping the lights on at local theatres. We celebrate local activity and encourage participation by letting our listeners know what's on offer and where. Linked to each broadcast is a wide range of events and outside interviews designed to ignite a creative spark, helping people see the health, social and community benefits of cultural engagement.

To date Voluntary Arts has worked with 13 BBC radio stations across England and Wales. We have recently secured funding to support the development of 12 more Up for Arts projects with BBC local radio over the next three years. Following the retirement of Laraine Winning who developed the Up for Arts model, we are now looking for a new Media Partnerships Director to oversee the Up for Arts Development Programme 2020-23.

Voluntary Arts plays a leading role in the national Get Creative campaign – a partnership between the BBC, Voluntary Arts, Crafts Council, Arts Council England, Creative Scotland, Arts Council of Wales, Arts Council of Northern Ireland, Local Government Association, Libraries Connected, Scottish Library & Information Council and What Next? Get Creative has grown its annual celebration from a single day with about 300 events in 2016 to a nine-day, UK-wide Festival with 1,700 events involving 120,000 participants in 2019. This year #GetCreativeAtHome is inspiring the public to express themselves creatively during the Coronavirus lockdown. The Get Creative website lists hundreds of creative activities you can take part in at home or online and #GetCreativeAtHome is being promoted by extensive broadcast coverage across the BBC. Our new Media Partnerships Director will sit on the Get Creative Steering Group in order to integrate our work with BBC local radio with the national Get Creative campaign.

The Job

The Voluntary Arts Media Partnerships Director will be responsible for co-ordinating Voluntary Arts’ media partnerships across the UK and the Republic of Ireland. This will include overseeing the Up for Arts Development Programme, 2020-23, managing the Up for Arts staff team, supporting the national Get Creative campaign and co-ordinating the Voluntary Arts PR Strategy. The Director will act as an advocate and champion for the voluntary arts sector with media partners.

The Director will also have responsibility for achieving sustainability and growth of media partnership projects and the supervision and development of an established staff team.

The Director reports to the Voluntary Arts Chief Executive and is a member of the Voluntary Arts Senior Management Team.

Salary:         £39,374 per annum.
Location:     UK Home based
Hours:          37.5 hours per week (5 days) 
Period:         This is a fixed term contract to March 2023.

Voluntary Arts will not discriminate in shortlisting or interviewing on the grounds of your race, colour, ethnic or national origins, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, or religious beliefs.

To apply, please download the job pack and return your application to [email protected] by 5pm, Friday 12 June 2020. Interviews will be held (via Zoom) on Tuesday 23 June 2020.

For an informal, confidential discussion about the post please contact Robin Simpson, Voluntary Arts CEO via email [email protected]