Creative YOU

Creativity is everywhere. Opportunity is not.     

We are part of the solution. The secret is in our name. Every year Creative Youth Network gives thousands of young people a taste and thirst for the arts and culture and the joy, life-skills and opportunity they bring.   

But we want more.   

Creative YOU is our campaign showcasing how we, you and the engaged, emerging and amazing young creatives we support, come together. 

We want to reveal how, together, we are ambition, quality, cultural democracy and social mobility in action. 

Every young person deserves the right to access creativity and development opportunities in the creative and cultural industries.

It all starts with education.

If all young people have access to creative subjects in school, then talented young people from all backgrounds can pursue their passion, develop crucial skills needed in so many industries and improve their wellbeing.

1. Pledge

Add your name and join the many people passionate about bringing creativity back into our schools.   

With all the pledges we’ll be reaching out to headteachers in Bristol and the South West. We hope this will encourage local academies to give more space to creativity in their curriculum.  

Bristol, being the creative city we know and love, can pave the way for other regions to do the same, showcasing the true value of creativity.  



2. Sign up

Join us by signing up to our newsletter where we share best practice of how to support young people. 

sign up 


3. Find out more

Join us by reading and sharing our CreativeYOU report which shows how our work brings opportunities for creative expression and enables young people to explore their talent, regardless of background or circumstance.  

Download our Creative YOU report


This week is mental health awareness week, and we're diving into the power of creativity in helping young people with their mental health and well-being.

Today more than ever, the pressures of being a young person can be immense, from academic expectations to social media dynamics, having a creative outlet is more than just a pastime, it's a crucial aspect of mental health and personal development. Engaging in creative activities not only offers a break from routine but also provides a platform for expression and self-discovery.

A Breath of Fresh Air

Creative activities provide young people with a chance to step back from their daily stresses and immerse themselves in something that brings them joy. Whether it’s painting, writing, music, or digital art, these activities serve as a breath of fresh air, allowing for a mental reset. The therapeutic effects of creativity are well-documented, helping to reduce anxiety and depression and improve mood.

In recent years, targeted interventions and creative workshops have played key roles in youth development, particularly in cultivating essential life skills and fostering self-confidence among young people. We use collaborative Goals, a method that empowers young people to chart their growth and achievements in a structured manner.

Collaborative Goals allow participants to set meaningful objectives at the beginning of an intervention or program. These goals are revisited at the conclusion to assess the "distance traveled," providing tangible evidence of personal growth and the effectiveness of the intervention.

Through this method, we found that 72% of young people using our creative services had an improvement in their mental health and wellbeing 

I’ve connected with so many different people, there are so many different characters, they all collide, and it’s just fun. Everyone’s so nice, caring, if someone was to join the group, they’d be treated like family, there’s no disconnection with anyone there, it’s all just friends. I feel safe here, I connect with people.

-            Keiren 17

A Means of Expression

For many young people, conveying feelings through words can be daunting. Creative outlets offer a non-verbal form of expression that can be more comfortable and personal. Through their chosen medium, young people can explore and communicate complex emotions without the barriers of conventional language, which can be particularly therapeutic for those dealing with emotional difficulties.

The best part about the course is being able to do your own thing and not have to worry about anyone else
 -Daisy, 13

Skill Development and Confidence Building

Engaging regularly in creativity allows young people to develop new skills and refine existing ones. Over time, as they see their abilities improve, their self-esteem and confidence also grow. Our Creative Course offers 10 weeks of creative development in different disciplines, while working towards a level 1 Arts Award. 


I found out about the course at school, and I joined because they don't have this kind of thing at my school and I wanted to try something new. I've learned to work better as a group and increased my communication skills. 

Building a Supportive Community and Improved Relationships

Creative communities, whether online or in person, provide a sense of belonging and support. Young people can connect with others who have similar interests, which helps them feel understood and valued. These communities are often inclusive, celebrating diverse expressions of creativity and encouraging personal growth.

Since joining the youth club, C’s confidence has grown but more importantly she has made friends! She comes home vibrant, excited and happy. Its so wonderful to see! She even gets involved in discussions, talks and group work.

-Parent of a young person

Preparing for the Future

Creativity is not just a hobby; it’s a critical skill for future success. Many industries value creative thinking and problem-solving skills, which are nurtured through regular creative practice. By developing these skills early on, young people are better prepared for the challenges of the adult world, making them more adaptable and resilient.

I started this course because I want to do music production when I'm older. I have learned how to produce music and the tutors are really nice and helpful. I really appreciate the opportunity to make my own music
- Nathaniel, 13

All in all, creative outlets are not just essential for the mental well-being of young people, they are crucial for fostering resilience, confidence, and a sense of community. Encouraging young people to explore and maintain creative interests can significantly impact their development and future prospects.

Explore our Creative services: 

Explore our Mental Health services 

Songwriting Low-intensity wellbeing
Music Club LGBTQ+ wellbeing group

Storytelling club

Find out more about Mental Health Awareness Week

How can we help?