Animated Women U.K.’s Achieve Program 2019 Open for Entries

In its third year, the ‘Helen North Achieve Programme’ continues to provide targeted career development support to women across the animation and VFX industries.  

LONDON — Animated Women UK, an organization supporting women in the UK’s VFX and animation industries, announced that its Helen North Achieve Programme is open for entries. The program focuses on supporting women in the VFX and animation industries to achieve their potential. Applications for the course are open now through Wednesday, April 24th. 

The Helen North Achieve Programme is open to women at all stages of their career looking to address the real challenges and barriers faced on a day-to-day basis. It aims to provide strategic career management and is run by acknowledged career development experts.

The program is supported by the ScreenSkills Animation Skills Fund with contributions from UK animation productions and Escape Studios. Marianne O’Connor, an experienced coach, facilitator and trainer specializing in women’s leadership development, and Jan Armstrong will run the program. The course’s 24 successful applicants will take part in six sessions held in central London.

Georgina Hurcombe, producer and managing director of LoveLove Films, who took part in the 2018 program, commented, “The Animated Women UK Helen North Achieve Programme is a fantastic support network for women in the animation and VFX industries. Being able to talk to like-minded women about issues that we all face and how to overcome them has been invaluable and inspiring. It’s was great to be able to speak to women from fantastic organizations such as DNeg, Disney and Blue Zoo.”

“The mix of career stages also provided unique and valuable insight,” continued Hurcombe, “Personally, it has also been really useful to hear what these women want in their own organizations and then think about whether I can apply any of these learnings at LoveLove Films. I’ve made some really great new friends too and a year later I’m regularly meeting up with many of them.”

“The newly re-booted ScreenSkills Animation Skills Council are thrilled to be working with Animated Women UK to enable them to run the Helen North Achieve Programme this year, funded through studios paying into the animation skills fund,” added Tom Box, chair of the ScreenSkills Animation Skills Council. “Reaching gender balance is of vital importance to our industry and the Achieve initiative is a targeted program to making sure that is achieved, at every level of the career ladder.”

Beth Parker, co-chair animation, Animated Women UK said, “We have seen some fantastic success stories come out of our previous Achieve Programs and I am delighted that we are able to offer another group of women, from across the experience spectrum, the opportunity to develop their professional and personal skills in a program designed specifically for women, by women.”

“We continue to strive to give women a platform in the animation and VFX industries within which, although we are gaining significant ground, we still can’t say our voices are heard equally,” continued Parker. “Programs such as ours are therefore crucial to the continued development of diversity in our vibrant industry. We are extremely grateful to both the ScreenSkills Animation Skills Fund and Escape Studios for their continued support.”

“I am personally delighted that AWUK is able to offer the Helen North Achieve Programme for the third year running,” added Louise Hussey, co-chair VFX, Animated Women UK. “It has been a very successful program that to date has worked with 50 women at various stages of their careers in VFX and Animation. While some change is beginning to take place, the fact remains that women do not hold many of the senior creative roles and the recent gender pay gap statistics show that women continue to be at the lower end of the pay scale and that has not improved since last year. It is incredibly heartening to have the financial support of the ScreenSkills Animation Skills Fund.  Escape Studios are also kindly offering to host the workshops again, enabling us to provide the best programme possible.”

Fees for the Achieve Program cost £225 for Senior participants, £175 for mid-level and £75 for junior level for the full set of sessions and will consist of evening workshops in central London. For more information, or to apply visit the website.

Source: Animated Women UK