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Today we’re launching a new dedicated platform for 14-25 year olds on the Isle of Wight. In these difficult times it will provide much needed opportunities, training and support, all made available for free.

More Opportunities. More Support.

After more than a year of interviews and conversations with young people, and reflecting on how recent events will specifically impact on this group, today we’re very excited to announce the launch of a new, dedicated service for 14-25 year olds living on the Island.

You told us that the Island is a special place, that you appreciate the amazing nature on our doorstep, the great beaches, the festivals, gigs at Strings and the community spirit. But you also told us how living on the Island has it’s downsides.

You explained how there are limited job opportunities and fear that this might now get worse in the light of the pandemic. You wanted opportunities for mentorship with inspiring professionals in their field, support to get to experiences on the mainland, more opportunities to perform and advice on setting up your own creative businesses. You told us that you’d like to meet other young people with similar interests to you, and that cost, travel and time can all be barriers that make it hard to participate.

We’ve taken all of this on board to design a unique platform especially for you.

It’s called Brave Island

What is Brave Island?

Brave Island aims to provide more opportunities for young people (14-25) living on the Isle of Wight who are interested in the arts and creative industries.

It’s a new type of online platform with regular posts each week listing new opportunities to get involved, learn new skills, get free tickets to events or even paid jobs and commissions! It’s completely free to take part, and you only need to apply to the opportunities that appeal to you.

Opportunities will take place all over the Island, digitally and on the mainland. They will take place on different days and at different times so that everyone can find something they can get involved with.

We understand juggling school, college, university, jobs, relationships and hobbies can be tricky so Brave Island provides experiences you can dip in and out of and fit around your other commitments.

Why do we want to help?

Ventnor Exchange is a creative organisation that runs a micro venue, record shop and events. We also work with artists to create new work for audiences near and far.

Our first ever project was creating the Ventnor Fringe, which is now a 6 day festival spanning music, comedy, theatre and art. When we started the event, back in 2010, we where all teenagers frustrated with the lack of opportunities available. We found there was very little support available to help people like us.

Through Brave Island we want to break down barriers to make both careers and opportunities to get involved with the creative industries easier.

Ready to get involved?

Sign up for free now!

How does it work?

Head over to the Brave Island website and sign up for an account. Every week we’ll be posting new opportunities and you can apply for whichever take your interest. It’s completely free and you can apply to as many or few opportunities as you like.

Our opportunities are split into four groups

Fund – Competitions or Funds where you can apply for money to make your ideas happen

Brief – These are set tasks you can apply for and could include paid commissions, free tickets to events, support in kind or opportunities to perform/exhibit/publish.

Learn – This could include workshops, talks, mentoring, work experience and placements.

Social – This includes parties, networking and opportunities to meet new people!

We’re going to be running the site as a pilot over the next 8 months and we’d love to know what you think. Let us know if you find the site useful, if you’d like to see any changes or if there are any technical bugs!

Together with you we want to make the Isle of Wight one of the best places to be a young person.

Sign up for free and get involved!

How is Brave Island funded?

This new scheme has been made possible thanks to funding by Arts Council England and the Mike Howley Trust. Additional opportunities have been funded from donations by the general public to Ventnor Exchange, as well as by Upstarter and Dead Natives.

Special Thanks to On The Wight and Shaun Cuff Graphic Designer for their support on this project.

Like what we do?

Support Ventnor Exchange by becoming a Fringe Friend for £20 (Just 38p per week!) and enjoy exclusive benefits including 2 for 1 tickets on shows, discounts in-store and more! Sign up by clicking here


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