Social enterprise launched following Teesside University internship

A film and multimedia social enterprise has been launched following a successful internship at Teesside University

Steve Thompson and interns at Cleveland Ironstone Mining Museum
Steve Thompson and interns at Cleveland Ironstone Mining Museum

A social enterprise which helps community organisations with film and multimedia projects has been set up as a result of an internship project at Teesside University.

Steve Thompson, community engagement coordinator at DigitalCity at Teesside University, employed six Teesside University graduates at the beginning of the year to work on video projects for his East Cleveland Online social enterprise.

After completing the three month paid internship, four of the interns have now set up their own social enterprise, WhatAbout Films, to build upon the work they have done with Steve.

Thompson, who is also Teesside University’s Social Entrepreneur in Residence, helped them establish the company and was with them when they launched their first completed project, a video guide at Cleveland Ironstone Mining Museum in Skinningrove.

He said: “During their three months working with me, the interns did some fantastic projects around East Cleveland, producing work, not just for the mining museum, but also for Whitecliffe Primary School and Freebrough Academy, sponsored by Teesside University.

“It’s great that these four have now gone on to set up their own social enterprise and I have been able to use both of my roles as community engagement coordinator and social entrepreneur in residence to help them.

“I will continue to maintain links with them and I’ve also taken on some more interns who will also be able to work on the East Cleveland Online project.”

WhatAbout Films has also been supported with a grant of £2,000 from Teesside University’s social entrepreneurship fund, which has been made possible by a £45,000 allocation from UnLtd, the leading provider of support for social entrepreneurs.

The four members of WhatAbout Films – Sam McGurry, Adam Mendum, Lance Julian and Alasdair Elmes – graduated from Teesside University in 2013 with BA (Hons) Television and Film Production.

Their video guide for the mining museum at Skinningrove is projected onto a blank wall at the end of the drift mine, giving the appearance of a 19th century miner sitting down to have his break while explaining to visitors what life is like in the mine.

Fundraising and marketing officer Janette Holt said: “This will be a wonderful addition to the attraction. Visitors will be able to put themselves in the shoes of the miners.”

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