SWIM Becomes An SCIO


SWIM (Scottish Women Inventing Music) is proud to announce that our organisation has gained SCIO status as regulated by the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR).

The decision to become a SCIO was made as our membership wished us to action our ambitious mission aims. SWIM’s Secretary Laura Leslie, Treasurer Riah Fairweather and SWIM founder Hilary Brooks sought advice from the Cultural Enterprise Office in Glasgow with the aim to place SWIM on a firmer footing. Becoming a charity (in this case a SCIO) will also open up additional funding opportunities. 

In March, SWIM officially launched. Of the launch, Hilary Brooks says: “The launch event confirmed that SWIM’s objectives resonated with the attendees and offered other calls to action. Collaboration and Cooperation will be our bywords. We cannot achieve equality without collaboration with and cooperation from those at the top of our industry. It became apparent that part of SWIM’s mission might be to become a conduit for national and local information, across all stages of life from childhood to later years. By heralding role models and the use of mentoring programmes -‘pull gals up behind us’  - we can help members with issues quite specific to women, including how to build confidence when considering returning to the industry after life breaks including immediately post-student, after child rearing, care-giving etc.”

What’s next for SWIM?

The most immediate plan is to redesign the structure of SWIM, expanding the knowledge-base and experience of the board, which in turn will help to set up 4 teams, each with a team leader who will report to the board, driving ideas, planning funding applications and executing actions covering each of our key areas. 

The four teams will be:

1) Education

2) Activism & Advocacy

3) Events

4) Website & Social Media

We have submitted an application to Creative Scotland for funding to carry out  educational workshops in primary & secondary school, and higher & further education establishments to encourage young women to consider a career in music. The workshops will deal with ONSTAGE & BACKSTAGE opportunities. 

SWIM will have representation at the Dumfries Music Conference on April 20th and a stall at the Flying Moon Festival in Glasgow on June 15th and has a presence on the governmental Cross Party Group on Music.

Brooks says of her hopes for the future of SWIM: “My hopes include establishing a broad membership that reaches throughout Scotland, across all areas of the music industry and representative of all musical genres. Together we can advocate for change and make it happen. Being a grassroots organisation we hope to encourage equality on and off stages in Scotland, for example by increasing awareness of PRS Foundation's international initiative KEYCHANGE, where festivals around the world are pledging 50:50 gender equality on stage by 2022. See https://keychange.eu 

It is SWIM’s intention to have an annual public event around International Women’s Day in March to promote our members, increase our visibility, celebrate women in music and report on findings and projects.”

What are key aims of SWIM?

  • To advance the arts, culture and heritage of Scotland by celebrating women in music, fostering equal opportunities for women and men.

  • To promote equality and diversity in the music industry by campaigning for increased visibility of women and their talents.

  • To provide and organise activities, creating opportunities for our membership to network with each other and showcase their talents.

  • To advance the musical education of girls and young women by delivering workshops and masterclasses.

How to get involved with SWIM :

You can either sign up for paid membership with SWIM (£5 per year) which gives you:

  • Access to member database (enabling potential networking and new working relationships)

  • Member event advertising

Alternatively you can sign up for our mailing list to keep updated on all future SWIM news.

Scottish Women Inventing Music is looking forward to our continued evolution and the coming months.