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Crafts Council

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Key advocacy messages 2014

Strengthening the craft sector

We’ve drafted some key messages to highlight areas of our advocacy work in the period before the next general election in May 2015. 

These messages, specific to education, training and finance, are not the only things we think are important but we do think they could strenghten the craft sector. If you agree with them please do share them.

Creativity and making must be a central part of education 
There are a range of benefits from a creative education and to learning craft skills: stimulating imaginative thinking; fostering innovative learning; the development of haptic skills which aid visual and cognitive development; the employability of people with craft skills; and how relevant these skills across the economy, not only for makers.

Extend the Government’s Growth Voucher scheme
The Government’s Growth Vouchers programme over two year’s will trial a variety of innovative approaches to help small firms via "soft support" such as business advice which is an important component of the early stage of a business. We believe the programme should be extended to a five-year period both to support the growth of microbusinesses and provide a stronger evidence base from the programme.

Increase entrepreneurship education in schools, colleges and universities
We would like to see better entrepreneurship education to encourage more young adults to feel confident in pursuing and setting up their own business ideas. Young people need to be taking a creative and collaborative approach to work, whether they work in a small or large business. 

More support for micro-employers to start apprenticeships
Our research evidence shows that entry routes into the craft sector need to diversify. Apprenticeships are available to those aged 16 and over but full grants for training apprentices only exist for employers recruiting 16 to 18 year old. Apprenticeships could be an important model for formalising existing work experience and increasing levels of business skills in the contemporary craft sector.