AN EDUCATIONAL charity headed by one of the UK’s most flamboyant admen is gearing up for expansion into Scotland in a bid to help disadvantaged young people into the creative industries.
The Ideas Foundation, founded by Engine Group veteran Robin Wight, is recruiting the owners of major brands to sponsor creative briefs that will boost their business. These briefs are then turned over to a mentored group of young people to come up with solutions.
Since it was set up in 2003, the Ideas Foundation’s projects have included the creation of an energy saving campaign for E.ON and getting private bank Coutts to connect with the next generation of young entrepreneurs.
Wight started sounding out potential Scottish backers at last month’s St Andrew’s Day Dinner hosted by the Marketing Society, and will be back in Edinburgh next month for early-stage discussions with the city council about a possible campaign.
“In due course we would like to have a reception with the First Minister, once we have introduced ourselves,” he added.
While the foundation’s main aim is to help young people who might otherwise be overlooked, Wight said the businesses get more than just kudos for their social responsibility.
“It is a chance to harvest the talents of young people,” Wight said.
“These companies are getting insights from a community that they are not normally in contact with.”
To date, the Ideas Foundation has worked predominantly with schools across London and Manchester, targeting 13 to 19-year-olds from minority and disadvantaged backgrounds.
SUBSCRIBE TO THE SCOTSMAN’S BUSINESS BRIEFING