Wildscreen launches first Natural History Mentorship scheme with ScreenSkills

06 August 2021 | Wildscreen

Bristol-based conservation charity, Wildscreen, is thrilled to announce the launch of its first UK mentoring programme, the ScreenSkills and Wildscreen Emerging Talent Mentorship Scheme, after securing funding from ScreenSkills. The programme will support individuals from groups which are currently underrepresented within the natural history industry and contribute towards making the genre more diverse and inclusive.

The initiative, which is being supported by ScreenSkills as part of the BFI Future Film Skills programme using funds from the National Lottery, confronts and eliminates systematic barriers to entry into the natural history industry which disproportionately impact groups which are already underrepresented including ethnically diverse individuals, LGBTQIA , those living with disability, womxn and individuals from low socio-economic backgrounds. These barriers to entry have only been exacerbated by the ongoing COVID pandemic, resulting in the next generation of wildlife filmmakers missing out on key in-person opportunities and training

The partnership with ScreenSkills enables Wildscreen to deliver its first six-month Mentoring Scheme, supporting talent from a range of career stages from entry-level up. The programme will run from September 2021 - February 2022 and will support 22 individuals based in the UK. Mentees will benefit from a range of support, including one-to-one sessions with a paired industry mentor, career and skill development training and workshops, networking opportunities and tailored guidance from industry experts.

Lucie Muir, Wildscreen’s CEO said: “We are so excited to be launching Wildscreen’s first mentoring scheme with ScreenSkills and taking real, tangible steps in supporting the UK natural history TV and film industry to become more representative of society.”

Jane Saunders, ScreenSkills mentoring programme manager, said: “It’s fantastic to be working with Wildscreen to help make the natural history sector more diverse and inclusive with this exciting new mentoring programme. Mentoring is such an important career development tool and a key enabler to help people from under-represented groups access and build their career within the screen industries.”

The programme will be delivered entirely virtually to ensure minimal disruption from COVID restrictions.

Mentee applications are currently open and close at 23.59pm BST on Sunday 1 August

To find out more about The ScreenSkills and Wildscreen Emerging Talent Mentorship Scheme, click here.

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