Chelsea FC and Chelsea Foundation are partnering with our friends at VERSUS to launch the 'Blue Creator Fund', a new programme that will give two aspiring creatives from underrepresented backgrounds up to £15k to produce a creative project about Chelsea and the club's community.
The most recent available data shows only 8% of those employed in the creative industry are from underrepresented backgrounds. The lack of diversity in this field is felt behind the scenes in football too, where both senior and junior creative positions are overwhelmingly held by advantageous groups.
The Blue Creator Fund aims to disrupt that and establish Chelsea and VERSUS’ shared ambition to diversify football on and off the pitch.
Chelsea and VERSUS are inviting all UK-based creators from underrepresented backgrounds aged 18-30 with a passion for storytelling to apply for the fund. Whether you are an artist, a musician, a content creator, or a playwright, Chelsea and VERSUS want you to bring the story of Chelsea and its community to life.
The two recipients of the Blue Creator Fund will not only receive funding to realise their projects, but also the opportunity to be mentored by some of Chelsea and VERSUS’ leading creative collaborators and the ability to share their final piece across VERSUS and Chelsea’s channels. The Fund will enable its recipients to deepen their craft and gain invaluable experience, exposure and opportunity for career development.
Chelsea and VERSUS have brought on five Ambassadors of the Blue Creator Fund that will help the fund recipients bring their projects to life. The Ambassadors are successful, established creatives working around football through a variety of mediums: storyteller Mayowa Quadri, photographer Zaineb Abelque, curator Ellis Gilbert, designer Zem Clarke and rapper Capo Lee.
Mayowa Quadri at VERSUS spoke to the importance of the Blue Creator Fund: “VERSUS is extremely proud to be partnering with Chelsea on the Blue Creator Fund. We make it our company mission to build a better world for football – one built on inclusivity and accessibility for all – and this new project will help to do just that.”
“There’s a clear need for diversity within the creative space, but there’s also a need for opportunity. By joining forces, we hope to create real world impact that empowers people to do things they didn’t think possible.”
Chelsea’s Mason Mount, who appeared in the Fund’s launch film, lent his support to the Blue Creator Fund: “As footballers, we showcase our creativity on the pitch so I’m proud that we are giving two young creatives the opportunity to promote their talent off the pitch too.
“Initiatives like this fund are important to discover and empower the next generation of creatives.”
Mason’s support was echoed by Chelsea Women’s Kadeisha Buchanan: “The culture of football is changing and we’re living in an exciting time where players are showcasing their interests in the arts off the pitch.
“Creativity and diversity are essential to continue this movement, two things which the Blue Creator Fund champions. I’ll be following the projects and I can’t wait to see the final products.”
Applications to the Blue Creator Fund are live at bluecreatorfund.com. Applications close on May 25 at 5pm BST+1.