Cross Borders: Mentoring


Our mentoring programme matches artists, activists and cultural practitioners with experienced and established mentors who will help to support your creative development.

  • 10 practitioners matched with an established mentor
  • 6 one-to-one mentoring sessions over the course of the year
  • Ongoing support from the Cross Borders team
  • A £1,000 grant to support your professional and creative development
  • Travel and childcare expenses can be provided so that you can attend meetings

The deadline for applications is midnight on Sunday, 29 May

Who can apply

Artists, activists and cultural practitioners from a refugee or other migrant background. You must be based in Scotland. 

Our mentoring programme is open to people who are interested in, or already practising visual arts, curation, artistic production, film, music, performance, cooking, dance, literature, design, journalism, cultural heritage and community engagement.

  • Are you seeking opportunities for creative expression and participation?
  • Do you earn a living, or hope to carve out a career through activism or creative arts?
  • Are you looking for ways to improve cultural and community life for yourself and others? 

Priority will be given to those who have had little or no support like this before. People who do not have refugee status are welcome to apply. If your application is successful, we will coordinate your grant so that it does not impact on your claim for asylum.

How it works

Our mentors are established artists, activist and cultural practitioners from all over the world. We work with applicants to identify the right mentor for them and their interests.

You will meet with your mentor online and in person where possible. They will:

  • Provide encouragement and targeted support
  • Help you to build connections
  • Share their knowledge, experience
  • Support you to identify goals and overcome challenges

Successful applicants should receive the first instalment of their grant and be introduced to their mentor by the end of July. Training and mentoring sessions will begin in September. Payment of the second grant instalment and final mentoring sessions will take place in May 2023.

How to apply

You can apply in one of the following ways:

  1. Complete our simple online form
  2. Submit a short video answering questions filmed on your mobile phone
  3. Request a form by email, returning your completed form to:

The deadline for applications is midnight on Sunday, 29 May.

Applications will be assessed on the basis of need, creative potential and readiness for this programme. Priority will be given to practitioners who have had little or no support like this before.

The review panel will include representatives from Scottish Refugee Council, A Moments Peace Theatre, UNESCO RILA, Deveron Projects and independent practitioners from refugee and other migrant backgrounds. Decisions and feedback will be shared in the week commencing 6 June.

If you have any questions about the project, would like help with the application process, or need any additional language support, please contact Razan Madhoon:

Cross Borders Mentors 2021-2022

Tawona Sitholé: Poet, playwright, storyteller and musician

Alberta Whittle: Artist, researcher and curator

Emma Jayne Park: Dancer, theatre maker and activist

Clare Robertson: Musician and performer

Jasleen Kaur: Artist and lecturer

Taghrid Choucair-Vizoso: Theatre maker, joint CEO of Shubbak, co-founder of At Home in Gaza and London -

Jade Montserrat: Research-led artist and writer

Pio Abad: Artist, curator and lecturer

Leena Nammari: Print maker and artist


Having been culturally displaced as a child and young person I never had a particularly easy path in life. I often found myself at odds with the environments I was in, with others and at times even with myself. As a young person I struggled with issues of identity, isolation and community but as an adult I see how this has shaped and empowered me to help others.

Mentor, Clare Robertson

Given the minimal support and consistent erasure of people from underrepresented backgrounds, this programme provides a significant opportunity for supporting critical creative work – vital in attending to systemic erasures. I consider mentorship, especially peer-led, to be an important method in sharing resources and knowledge.

Mentor, Alberta Whittle

Image credit: Jade Montserrat