Freshwater has announced a new partnership with Arts & Business Cymru to provide the organisation with a year of pro-bono PR support as part of its commitment to supporting the arts and charity-based work in Wales.
Over the next 12 months, the Welsh head-quartered media group will provide strategic communications advice and guidance, as well as support to implement PR activity, across a range of channels.
In return, Freshwater will receive a range of membership benefits that will seek to raise its profile among the business community in Wales.
Arts & Business Cymru is a membership organisation and charity that brings businesses and the arts together to promote, develop and sustain mutually beneficial relationships. Jointly funded by the Welsh Government and the Arts Council of Wales, it delivers a wide range of tailored programmes and services to businesses of all sizes and in all sectors.
Similarly, its arts members range from individual artists to major national institutions, who can access free advice and training, priority access to some programmes and valuable networking opportunities.
Its flagship event is the annual Arts & Business Cymru awards, which rewards and celebrates these supportive and innovative partnerships. The awards have grown in stature to become one of the premier events in the calendar for both Welsh artists and the private sector.
Freshwater has extensive experience working with clients in the arts, culture and heritage industries, having worked with Arts & Business Cymru on previous projects, as well as for organisations including Chapter Arts Centre, the Cardiff Design Festival and the National Eisteddfod for Wales, where it was appointed to raise awareness of its Gold Medal for Fine Art and Craft and Design.
Carolyn Pugsley, director at Freshwater, said: “Arts & Business Cymru is an inspiring organisation, and one that we, at Freshwater, are delighted to be associated with over the next 12 months.
“We know from our previous work in the sector that Wales is lucky to have a thriving arts scene, and we’re excited to play our part in promoting this. We’re looking forward to helping raise awareness of the real, tangible benefits that partnerships between the arts and business, two outwardly diverse industries, can bring.”
Arts & Business Cymru’s varied schemes include Arts @ Work, which takes the arts directly into workplaces, to inspire and enthuse employees through arts-based training schemes and workplace exhibitions. It also helps businesses engage meaningfully with local communities through its CultureStep programme, with projects focusing on younger and older age groups with the arts, and on promoting the benefits of the arts to physical and mental health.
Alongside this, its Professional Development Programmes helps to foster business skills and expertise among arts organisations. Artists benefit from free-of-charge advice from a business advisor, while business members can gain confidence and coaching skills and develop as future managers.
Ms Pugsley continued: “On the surface, these two diverse sectors can appear miles apart, but this allows each industry to offer the other a fresh perspective on the challenges it may face. Businesses are encouraged to step outside their comfort zones and gain confidence from experiencing a new creative environment, while artists and institutions are provided with a valuable sounding-board for their future development.”
Rachel Jones, chief executive at Arts & Business Cymru, said: “Freshwater’s track record of success for its arts-based clients, and detailed understanding of the sector in Wales and further afield, makes the prospect of this year-long partnership extremely exciting.
“We have a number of exciting new projects in the pipeline, and are looking forward to working with Freshwater to bring the benefits of working with Arts & Business Cymru to as wide an audience as possible.”