Those of us who have the pleasure of experiencing the imagination, drive, passion and integrity of the younger generation on a regular basis are perhaps less surprised at the swell of political engagement and energy and its transformative power at the polls. It's wonderful and exciting to imagine that the creativity and intelligence of the next generation – a resource which has all too often been squandered – is finally being focussed onto our political landscape and its challenges. If we are to solve the enormous problems that confront us this century, we as a society desperately need the resource of those young minds, that young energy, those creative ideas.
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Tangled Feet are also currently in another kind of limbo, as we await the decisions of this next round of the Arts Council's NPO funding later this month. Tangled Feet have never been a 'National Portfolio Organisation' (this surprises some people) and never felt the multiple benefits of a regular, reliable, long-term funding agreement. We have always been funded project-by-project, with no 'core' funding, which makes it much more challenging to develop long-term relationships and strategy and to put in place some of our more ambitious plans. Becoming an NPO would alleviate so much uncertainty, allow us to make a robust five-year plan. It would free us up to operate as artists and spend more time making work and building relationships, rather than dealing with the ever-constant problem of where the next tranche of money comes from to keep our infrastructure running.
We'll be anxiously awaiting the NPO announcements on 27th June, which will define the future for us as a company almost as much as the election will define the next 5 years politically. However strong our case, unfortunately the Arts Council will have to be making tough and complex decisions about who they fund this round. At the beginning of June we really had no idea what the next five years will look like (and perhaps politically it will take a while to become clear.) But whichever way the chips fall in the wake of the election and the NPO decisions, we will still carry on doing what we do: we'll continue to try to creatively rethink the huge problems we face as local and global communities. Continue to create opportunities for people to come together in public spaces and be part of narratives that wrestle with these challenges. And continue to be inspired by the next generation and buoyed by their ideas, energy and hope. Never mind a magic money tree - that's a resource which will never run out.