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Watershed Talent Development

Our inclusive programmes reach out to people in the spaces where they are, developing their profile, skills, and confidence and providing stepping stones into the creative and cultural sector.

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Rife

Rife identifies and cultivates young talent in Bristol

What Is Rife And How Do We Work?

Imagine we lived in a country where elections and referendums reflected the opposite of what people under 25 voted for. Imagine we were faced with a media that had pale, male and stale columnists in their 40s and 50s moaning and droning on about the frivolousness of millennial culture. Imagine we all held in our hands a device that could amplify our voices.

Guess what, pal? We already do live here and face this and hold these devices.

So, in comes Rife, a digital platform to amplify the voices, opinions, thoughts and stories of young people, through social media, videos and essays. Currently residing in Bristol, Rife boasts a regular monthly audience of 25k people, all wanting to know what these young voices think and want and crave and know.

All the content on Rife is made and curated by people under 25. The direction of travel for the platform is decided by young people. If we are to take seriously these voices, and give them opportunity to grow and feel confidence and feel like their opinions are valued, then they need space, mentoring, time and money.

And that’s just what Rife offers its content creators in one way or another.

We develop young people’s digital skills, voice, confidence, experience and networks so they go into the creative sector and thrive. We want young people’s voices and creativity to be setting the agenda in the sector, driving it forward so it continues to innovate and inspire.

The creative industries in the UK are growing, contributing 5.2% to the whole economy, and Bristol is one of the main centres outside of London. The sector remains largely male and pale with underrepresentation of women, people from Black Asian Minority Ethnic groups, those from financially disadvantaged backgrounds and the disabled.

The opportunity to get paid to be creative should be open to all. Inclusion is crucial to the creative sector if it is to remain fresh, rich, relevant and resonate with diverse audiences.  

As the creative industries grow, they’ll need staffing. And part of Rife’s journey is to equip young people to be ready to take on those jobs. We do this by networking, by myth-busting and breaking down what different jobs are available and what skills you might need. And also cheerleading for the creative industries. Because schools are being met with budget cuts, and the largest impact of these is on the arts. There is a real focus on traditional professional jobs. So we try and provide routes for young people.

Two thirds of creative businesses in Bristol are seeking to take on more staff in the next year and there is a need for innovative and digitally skilled recruits from diverse backgrounds. Largely the formal education system is failing to give young people what they need to find routes and be ready for the sector.

Rife – Watershed’s platform co-created with young people – identifies and cultivates talent.

How To Get Involved:

Young People:

We’re always on the hunt for budding journalists, vloggers, bloggers, filmmakers, photographers, and designers to join our team. You can get involved too. Head here to found out how you can create content for us. We also have limited six-month paid internships available. The best way to get our attention is to pitch those ideas.

Send us your ideas blogs, articles, videos, pictures and opinions. Rife magazine is yours and we want the content to come from you. It could be in any form you choose.

What we want: reviews, opinions, stories, skill-sharing, pictures.

Head here to pitch those ideas.

Schools And Youth Organisations

We offer a bunch of different ways you can work with us, as well as the space to pitch new ways. We can partner with you to deliver digital media training to Bristol’s young people. We can get your events and organisation information out there. We can also run outreach workshops too. Check out the ways we've worked with youth organisations so far, and if you see something you like, or would like to suggest a new idea, please email us

We can design something to suit you. It works best if there is a pre-existing group of young people. We can work with them to design content -- videos, essays, lists, photos -- about the things important to them, get them confident about their voice and also using digital media to tell stories. Above is an example of a film we made with Roma kids in school.

The best thing to do is just chat to us so email us

Young people participating in Rife projects and events supports ArtsMark Award criteria.

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