Western Development Commission leading new EU-funded project

Funding of €2m has just been announced for a new three-year project to support the creative industries sector in the Western Region. Creative Momentum will support and connect creative enterprises across the west of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Sweden, Finland, and Iceland. The €2m in funding has been secured from the EU’s Northern Periphery and Arctic (NPA ) Interreg programme.

The translational project will be led by the Western Development Commission (WDC ), with NUI Galway also participating.

According to Paddy McGuinness, WDC chairperson: “Over the next three years creative enterprises from across the region – including craftspeople, designers, artists, filmmakers, app developers and musicians – will be able to access a range of new opportunities. The wealth of creativity in the region means this sector holds great potential for sustainable job creation, including in rural areas. Creative Momentum aims to help creatives at different stages in their business to take the next step; whether through training, innovation, networking, or accessing international markets.”

Some of the supports that will be available include: Mentoring on how to access export markets; innovation support for new product/service ideas; attending a creative industry event in northern Ireland, Sweden, Finland, Iceland or Ireland; exhibiting at a trade fair/show/festival anywhere in Europe; producing a short ‘pitch video’

To access international audiences, creative enterprises can also create a free online profile on MyCreativeEdge.eu (www.mycreativeedge.eu ) to showcase their work. Some 550 creatives have already signed up to the site which receives more than 2,000 visits a month.

“We know that many working in the sector work alone, so creating opportunities and space for them to connect, both in person and online, will be central to Creative Momentum’s success,” added Ian Brannigan, WDC acting CEO. “We’ll be holding a series of information and networking events on different themes across the Western Region and would welcome any suggestions on future topics.”

Creative Momentum project activities will begin later this year. For updates on future opportunities see www.mycreativeedge.eu and connect with it on Facebook (www.facebook.com/eucreative ) and Twitter (@eucreative ).

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