FCB Inferno & The GirlHood Launch Training Programme to Encourage Diversity
In a move to recruit a richer mix of female talent into creative departments, FCB Inferno has partnered with The GirlHood to launch a pilot creative traineeship programme for 18-24 year old girls from diverse backgrounds.
Nine girls will take part in the five-week initiative, which launches on the 11th April. In collaboration with FCB Inferno, The GirlHood has created a unique programme to immerse the girls into the creative industry. Through their creative value curriculum, which places equal value on developing character, culture and creativity, the traineeship will prepare the young women for life as professional creatives. Both the training and work experience will all take place in the agency positioning the girls at centre of the business. They’ll also gain exposure to industry events including Advertising Week Europe and the D&AD Festival. At the end of the five weeks FCB Inferno aims to hire at least one of the participants as a creative intern, with the opportunity for a permanent position thereafter.
In order to reach out further than the usual talent channels, recruitment partner Create Jobs is generating interest from over 150 organisations across London, targeting young women through organisations like Job Centre Plus and The Princes Trust. The nine trainees who make it through the selection process will earn an apprenticeship wage during the programme, gain an Arts Awards accreditation, build a personal portfolio, have a dedicated mentor and be guaranteed an interview for the placement opportunity.
The GirlHood was co-founded in 2015 by Kati Russell, a former Senior New Blood Programme Manager at D&AD and Natalie Rodden, an ex-outstanding Teach First teacher, with the aim of transitioning girls with creative potential from culture consumers, to culture producers. Over the past year they have delivered workshops for over 200 girls with various creative agencies and for events like the Southbank’s WOW festival and V&A’s London Design Week. The two will oversee the girls throughout the course.
The partnership with FCB Inferno came about after Nic Willison, the Senior Strategist on This Girl Can, watched Kati speak about The GirlHood on a panel at the London 3% Conference. The pair sparked up a conversation around the action needed in industry to increase diversity, and in the following months the scheme came to life.
Kati, co-founder of The GirlHood says, “We launched the GirlHood out of frustration that creativity in adland seems largely the preserve of the middle class, and it isn’t a place where you can easily enter without the right credentials. We want to propel a group of talented girls from diverse backgrounds in to creative careers. However, we can’t assume what young people need to succeed, we have to build it together. This pilot will enable us to test a new learning experience and co-create something with the participants that can have a wider impact.”
Owen Lee, Joint Chief Creative Officer at FCB Inferno says, “The creative industry has been commenting for years about the lack of women in our departments, but very little has been done to truly address this. Our FCB Inferno / Girlhood initiative is an exciting, bold step to change the status quo and forge a new way to recruit more diverse talent - and ultimately produce more relevant and even better creative.”
Sumi Ejiri, partnerships manager at Create Jobs says, “Opportunities like this are essential in helping establish an equal playing field for young Londoners. A generation of creative talent is being lost to expensive degrees, a lack of good quality apprenticeships, and way too many unpaid entry-level positions. We hope this project sets a precedent for industry to actively invest in the diversity and resilience of their future workforce.”