Ideas Foundation believes that the brightest ideas don’t come from one place or type of person, and have been on a mission to help move the creative, digital and media sector in a more diverse direction for just over a decade.

Diverse new talent brings a new perspective to solve problems, energise creative work, and build an industry brimming with innovation.

Government and industry led research data shows the challenges about representation:

  • Advertising is the seventh worst industry in terms of make-up from different class origins
  • 60% of those in our industry come from professional or managerial origins (vs. 30% of UK workforce)
  • Only 15% of our industry come from working-class origins (vs 30% of UK workforce)
  • 27% in the industry went to private school compared to 7% of the UK
  • 63% of women who work in the industry went to university
  • 75% of those that are BAME in the industry went to university
  • 69% of those that work in the industry who are BAME were privately educated
  • 92% of creative jobs in the UK were held in the “most advantaged” in society

MPA and Ideas Foundation – industry and education are speaking the same language.

Ideas Foundation is an education charity that helps major brands and employers such as Burberry, Nike and ITV develop inspirational programmes to reach young people from all walks of life. The industry engagement is key to providing motivating and inspirational educational experiences with students learning from industry and employers.  The MPA have partnered with the Ideas Foundation supporting the work they do with local schools and colleges with particular emphasis on their Employability Bootcamp with Manchester College, Manchester’s largest Further Education provider.

Over the past 5 years Belinda Peach, Ideas Foundation northwest development director, has applied the Ideas Foundation know-how to create a transformational local programme for students from Manchester College aged 16 and above from some of Europe’s most deprived wards.

The project aims:

  • To provide meaningful work-related experiences that develop young people’s employability skills and prepare them for work experience, employment, training, or further/higher education in creative communications industries
  • To engage creative industry employees in supporting individualized programs for learners, based on their educational and career aspirations
  • To build successful relationships with high quality regional creative employers to increase industry led mentoring, work experience and fulltime employment opportunities

How can you help and engage?

We are looking to recruit a new cohort of mentors and employers who would like to share their experience and inspire students from areas of social exclusion and working-class backgrounds.

Belinda and the regional team have delivered a mentor recruitment and training framework with the following employers over the last 5 years: McCann, ITV, BBC, Brown Bag Films, Seventy-Seven Group, Hoopla, Mighty Giant, Chief TV, MediaCom, Dentsu, SMRS, Manifest, More Media Sales and Zeal Creative. You will be in good company!

If you would like to know more about becoming an MPA and Ideas Foundation industry mentor, please contact: Belinda Peach

Testimonial and Case Study

Heather MacRae, Chief Executive of the ideas Foundation

“The partnership with the MPA is a win-win for employers, college, and students.  The employers are given a chance to develop mentoring and coaching skills in their employees.  They can also get a chance to see the future local talent that could be their future workforce. Students get real life insights and advice on how they can develop their skills and careers.”

Christian James, MPA Chair

“The MPA is proud to work with Ideas Foundation. Our industry thrives when people with different contexts and perspectives come together to find solutions, so it is not only the right thing to do, but the smart thing to do, to encourage and support initiatives that can open the doors of our sector to people from more diverse walks of life.”

Kai Ojo, MPA D&I Task Group Lead

“Working with the Ideas Foundation, the MPA can help shine a light on the new talent in the area.  All too often, we hear that there is not enough diversity in the talent pool; the truth is a bit more nuanced than this. One of the ways to address this is to further bridge the gap between the world of work and the platforms for education, thereby ensuring that transition is more seamless and that the experiences whilst in education are rich, relevant, and innovative.”

Lisa Thompson at Wavemaker  industry mentor

Video: Belinda Hanks McCann industry mentor