Here you will find information on opportunities to work with Voluntary Arts.

Voluntary Arts England

Development Officer (South East)

Area: South East
Deadline: 5pm, Friday 4 September 2020 

Across the UK and the Republic of Ireland there are approximately 63,000 voluntary arts groups, regularly involving more than 10 million people participating voluntarily in creative cultural activities: this activity is, and will continue to be, a critical part of both the bedrock and the grass roots of the cultural life of our communities and nations.

Voluntary Arts, through additional Arts Council England NPO funding to support more public facing work to promote everyday creativity, is now recruiting for a new Development Officer post based in the South East.

Voluntary Arts works with a range of partners across the UK as part of the Get Creative campaign, which normally includes a large-scale national celebration of everyday creativity each May – Get Creative Festival. During the spring of 2020, our efforts shifted to the hugely successful #GetCreativeAtHome campaign instead. Learning from these experiences, we aim to deliver a sustainable network of local support for everyday creativity across England, to build the Get Creative Festival year on year to involve over 3,000 events by 2022, through capacity building support, roadshow events, micro grants, media coverage and themed campaigns.

Salary: £10,480 (based on £26,199 per annum pro rata) 
Location: Home-based or based within a partner organisation in the South East once appropriate.
Hours: 15 hours per week. Hours can be flexible to take account of personal circumstances. There might be occasional evening and weekend work for which time off in lieu will be given.
Period: Funding secured until March 2023.

To apply for this role, please see the full job ad.

Songwriting Commission

Voluntary Arts Scotland is seeking a songwriter for its new project ‘Mouth of the River’, to create a brand new song for choirs across the city of Edinburgh, inspired by the Water of Leith.

Mouth of the River is funded by Scottish Natural Heritage’s PlungeIn! fund, and will see six Edinburgh-based choirs engaging with the Water of Leith through information sessions and volunteer days.

Following this, participants will be interviewed to gather their thoughts, feelings and memories about the 24-mile river that runs through Scotland’s capital. Inmates at HMP Edinburgh will also take part in the project during their creative writing and visual art classes.

Once this material has been gathered by Voluntary Arts Scotland (words, phrases, paintings, poems etc) it will be handed to the songwriter as inspiration for the new song. This should be arranged for 4-part SATB choirs, but with the facility for choirs who do not read music to learn by ear. Once complete, the song will be given to the relevant choir leaders to teach their choirs.

The six Edinburgh choirs we are working with on the project are: Pentland Singers, The Welcoming Choir, Loud & Proud, The Cheyne Gang, Springwell Golden Voices and Phoenix Choir: Leith. However, once they have sung and recorded the song, it will be gifted to all the choirs in Edinburgh to add to their repertoire, should they wish.


The above choirs all sing a wide range of repertoire, but we anticipate that this new song will be written in an accessible pop/Scottish folk style, with an energy that will have a broad appeal.


This project was originally scheduled to take place from April – December 2020, but due to Covid-19 has had to be postponed. At this stage, we are unsure when choirs will be able to meet up again – but we would like to have the songwriter in place for when that eventually happens.

The original schedule allowed for a two-month period for the songwriter to write the song, having received the material gathered from choir members and inmates.

It is not necessary for the songwriter to be based in Edinburgh, however we feel it would be beneficial for the writer to have some experience of visiting the Water of Leith (please note, there is no travel budget for this commission).


A fee of £1,500 is available. This includes arranging the song for SATB choir and providing a score for musical accompaniment.


Friday 14 August 2020

Please send an email outlining your interest in the project and your songwriting experience - we would also love to hear some examples of your work, so please send us links or attach music files.

Send to: Kelly Donaldson, Communications & Engagement Manager, Voluntary Arts Scotland, email [email protected]

For an informal chat about the brief, please call Kelly on 07843 056023.

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