In a remarkable effort to nurture leadership skills and amplify the voices of individuals in our community, a series of dynamic and transformative workshops were recently held as part of the Creative Leader Training Programme. This groundbreaking initiative aimed to inform and inspire Central and Eastern European (CEE) migrant leaders, equipping them with the skills necessary to set up and run community organisations or businesses, become activists, community champions, or leaders in their communities.

The programme covered a diverse range of topics essential for effective leadership in the creative industry. From Marketing & PR to Fundraising, Migrant Entrepreneurs, Organisational Development, and Cultural Leadership, the workshops were designed to provide a well-rounded skill set that empowers participants to navigate the complexities of leadership in the migrant and creative sector. Thanks to the funding from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, we delivered a second round of training.

Our aim is to make a change in the lives of Central And Eastern European migrants, and to achieve that, we need more leaders and activists who will work on changing migration policies, challenge negative perceptions of migrants, and work with local communities to build links and improve community cohesion. To reduce negative stereotypes, increase participation, acceptance, and understanding of migrants, we need to work on two levels – increase migrant participation in community and society lives in the UK and reduce structural and institutional barriers to integration.

Led by renowned industry experts, the sessions were filled with invaluable insights and practical tips to help the aspiring leaders thrive. Heather Kincaid, a distinguished Writer and Digital Producer, took the reins for the Marketing & PR workshop. Participants were treated to a deep dive into the methods and tactics that can make a significant impact on their businesses. Heather’s expertise illuminated how effective, low-cost marketing strategies can help businesses flourish.

Yvonne Gregory, an Arts/Culture Fundraiser extraordinaire, spearheaded the Fundraising workshop. With a wealth of knowledge and experience, Yvonne guided participants through the principles, processes, and top tips for successful fundraising. Participants gained valuable insights on planning and developing compelling grant applications, empowering them to secure the financial resources needed to support their creative endeavours.

Cathy Brown, the esteemed CEO of Initiative for Social Entrepreneurs, led the Migrant Entrepreneurs workshop. Cathy expertly brought together ideas and pro tips on assessing the opportunities of running a social enterprise. She shed light on the potential risks involved and covered crucial basics such as registration and business planning. This session proved to be a vital resource for aspiring migrant entrepreneurs looking to make a meaningful impact within their communities.

Sanaz Amidi, the visionary Chief Executive of Rosetta Arts, took participants on an illuminating journey through Organisational Development. She introduced the Business Model Canvas, a powerful tool that helps businesses thrive. By sharing invaluable insights, Sanaz showed participants how to make their organisations successful and sustainable.

Dr. Vishalakshi Roy, the esteemed Director of Earthen Lamp, led the captivating Cultural Leadership workshop. Exploring various leadership styles and shedding light on the difference between being a boss and being a leader, Dr. Roy provided participants with a strong foundation for leading with impact. She navigated modern-world scenarios and shared techniques on how to develop a loyal following of supporters.

(this training) gave me a lot of knowledge and feelings that we migrants can go into leadership positions too

~ Magdalena Kij

For those who missed the opportunity to join the programme, fear not! Another Leadership Programme is on the horizon. Stay tuned for the upcoming Newsletter, where more information about this exciting opportunity will be shared (sign up for the CEEus! network and our newsletter here ). The Creative Leader Training Programme remains committed to supporting aspiring creative leaders and equipping them with the tools and knowledge needed to make a lasting impact in their fields.

The Creative Leader Training Programme deeply appreciates the active participation of all CEE migrant cultural leaders. The hope is that they took away numerous lessons and advice from this exceptional programme. The aim is to witness the rise of future leaders who not only pursue their careers passionately but also embrace and empower others within their communities.