We’ve been working as part of the European Creative Hubs Network on the Creative FLIP P2P project. The objective of the project is for members of the ECHN, in particular their Ambassadors of Change, to provide support to each other through mutual learning experiences taken from practices and procedures during the Covid-19 Pandemic.
The Creative FLIP P2P project provides a platform that showcases 14 selected tested methods and good practices that emerged as a response to the challenges that the pandemic brought.
These selected methods and good practices are represented by the Ambassadors of Change, creative hubs and organisations (of which Baltic Creative are included) who are available via the P2P platform to share their insights and knowledge gained while implementing these new good practices.
Alongside 13 other hubs from aross Europe, Baltic Creative was asked to create a toolkit of resources and support designed to aid creative hubs in their recovery following the Coronavirus. Each toolkit was designed to boost knowledge, share experiences and provide practical solutions.
During the Coronavirus outbreak, Baltic Creative provided a variety of support to our tenants and community in order to support them through the crisis. This support was included in our toolkit which covered the following key areas:
Health and wellbeing support for tenants and staff
Health and wellbeing is at the top of our agenda. We have 60 businesses currently engaged in our programme with plans to reach a minimum of 100 by the end of 2021. We have also implemented a range of support for Staff.
- Free online Health and wellbeing sessions. Including yoga, mediation, pilates.
- Held online social meetups for tenants
- Held online events that provided information on specific Covid support eg local grant funding.
- Curated a 4 part event support series for tenants returning the workplace
- In partnership with a local social enterprise
1.Stress management in the workplace
2. Digital and media detox
3. Looking after the wellbeing of your colleagues
4. Bringing mindfulness to the working day
- Mental Health first aid training for staff.
- Medicash health plan to access counselling and cover medical costs.
- Flexible working arrangements.
- Stress management training.
- Access to one to one in person counselling with a small local organisation.
Working with the City Council rates office we helped tenants secure one-off 10k small business cash grants linked to their business rates. This helped them cover their fixed costs like rent and electricity etc. We created an online platform where our tenants and the community could access up-to-date support and links to information to help them. https://www.baltic-creative.com/covid19support/
Partnerships and Advocacy
- Professional services: Liverpool Chamber strategic Partner: helped connect tenants with specific business support such as DIT, HR and Hygiene.
- Supporting growth and local Jobs: Kickstarter scheme support: supporting young people into the workplace.
- Sector-specific Opportunities: BIMA bespoke affiliate membership for tenants. Access to awards programmes, conferences and training.
- Community and social good: Exploring ways communities can work together to shape a better future.
COVID operational guidance
We created a Safety Guidance booklet containing resources for tenants around office working and using communal spaces safely. This was updated and re-distributed each time restrictions were implemented or lifted or changed in any way. We updated the tenants on changes to government advice and guidance in bite-size pieces of information relevant to our sector – making it easier to digest and make sense of. Most recently we have signed up to the government testing initiative to provide tenants with lateral flow testing kits – encouraging them to take tests before face to face meetings etc.
About the European Creative Hubs Network
The European Creative Hubs Network (ECHN) is a peer-led network with a mission to enhance the creative, economic and social impact of hubs. There are many existing creative and cultural networks in Europe, however, none are specifically tailored to support physical spaces that provide services to multiple creative businesses.
As focal points for creative businesses, hubs offer the most effective way to support the growth and development of creative industries. To achieve this, hubs themselves need to network, to pool resources, share best practices, and build on advocacy, policy and opportunities. Baltic Creative has been a member of the ECHN for over 6 years and we continue to work with creative industries across Europe in order to improve our offering and enhance others.