Free London Coworking Initiative Develops Creative Skills In Young People

Creative Works, a free coworking initiative in the UK, will help marginalised people gain valuable skills and training for future employment prospects
  • A new coworking space in northeast London is offering free space to startups that take on a young apprentice.
  • The initiative will help marginalised people gain valuable skills and training for future employment prospects.
  • Creative Works is another example of how coworking can benefit people based within the local community.

A new coworking hub in northeast London is the latest example of how a collaborative and supportive workspace can inspire positive change in its local community.

Creative Works in Waltham Forest, London, is set to launch an apprenticeship scheme and talent incubator, offering free workspace to startup and early-stage creative businesses that agree to take on a young apprentice.

The idea is to help marginalised people aged 16-24 gain valuable skills and training, to foster creative talent and guide them into future employment.

Set to open in December 2018 after a £3.6 million investment from the Greater London Authority, Charity Bank and Big Issue Invest, Creative Works forms part of a new ‘Big Creative Village’ designed by Big Creative Education (BCE), a creative learning hub based within Waltham Forest’s regeneration area.

To inspire both its coworking members and young apprentices, Creative Works commissioned local designers and makers to furnish and decorate the space. A collection of artwork by local artists adorn the walls, reflecting the workspace’s character and creative spirit.

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With space for up to 100 people, Creative Works provides collaborative and private flexible space with meeting rooms, video-conferencing, a digital training suite and a dedicated event space, which is used for social community-building events as well as private hire.

All profit from the workspace and meeting facilities is re-invested into BCE to further develop its educational programmes.

Alexis Michaelides, Managing Director at Big Creative Training, said: “The journey began in 1999, when I first started teaching event promotions to a small group of young people on a housing estate in Waltham Forest.

“Nearly twenty years on and not only are we changing lives through Big Creative Training and Academy, but we can now extend our vision through the launch of Creative Works, a shared workspace and community for the 21st century in the heart of East London.”

As the global flexible workspace industry grows, the community-focused coworking movement is expanding with it. Creative Works’ vision enables it to benefit not just local people and businesses looking for a place to work, but to enrich and support a much larger community based outside of its own four walls.