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ITM - Inclusion Through Media

Partnership information


Participant filming Breastfeeding Awareness DVD


Inclusion Through Media (ITM) is the name of the Equal funded partnership led by Hi8us Limited.  The project is producing innovative, creative film, video and digital media work made by talented young people from a wide range of backgrounds, who have not necessarily achieved their potential through mainstream education and training. Uniquely, our participants are able to work side-by-side with experienced professionals, resulting in high quality, diverse stories, created by those best placed to tell them.


ITM’s key ambition is to demonstrate that participatory media work with excluded and disadvantaged people actively helps to combat social exclusion by giving them a chance to make their voices heard, whilst enabling some of our most creative young people to access the industry through ‘non-traditional’ routes, enriching the talent pool of the UK’s world-class audio-visual industry. We want to showcase this evidence to convince policy-makers and employers that our model works, and that the social and economic benefits go hand-in-hand.


Reaching employers to influence and change employment practices within the industry, to enable talented, non-traditional learners from diverse backgrounds to access employment opportunities;

  • Through long-term, new evaluation methods, identifying key values and measures from engagement with participatory media work by disadvantaged groups, that can influence policy makers and funders; 
  • Influencing and informing employment and learning policy.
  • Horizontal – influencing peer groups of fellow professionals or practitioners
  • Vertical – intended to influence the actions of regional, international policy makers and funders

Target Groups

ITM experimented with a range of different methods to improve the employability of people previously disengaged from the mainstream, through participation in media projects. 



Round 1 to Round 2

Hi8us Projects was a key partner in the Equal Round 1 iCi (Inclusion in Creative Industries) project.

Transnational partnerships


Mark Dunford, Hi8us Projects Limited,


Action 2: 31 December 2007
Action 3: 31 March 2008

Equal theme

Lifelong learning and inclusive working practices


16-17-year-olds in danger of exclusion from school, People from disadvantaged areas (top 10% most deprived wards), People with mental health conditions
Total beneficiaries: over 570 beneficiaries


Boy meets Sara - Be Roma or Die Tryin’ Project

Inclusion Through Media (ITM) has worked with 576 people from disadvantaged areas of the UK between September 2004 and December 2007. The project produced over 70 films and videos as well as print, digital media and research products; involving ten delivery partners and an investment of over £6.5 million. 

The ITM project has enabled Hi8us and its partners to refine and extend their practice. Individualised investments in participants’ lives and a broad range of progression routes were trialled. The most noteworthy outcome was the sense of ‘self-efficacy’ – a belief in one’s ability to achieve – that developed in many of the participants.

“In the office, I used to use slang and road talk and now I think of it as a workplace… it puts pressure on you, and you learn whether you will cope or crumble”. Participant, UK Sound TV. 

“It opened the door to many opportunities for me… It equipped me with confidence and provided countless opportunities.”  Asia Alfasi. StripSearchers Project

“Being a trainee was such a good opportunity to learn from a really privileged starting point .” Paul Morris Almost Adult Project. 

StripSearchers (Beta) Project workshop

Overall  ITM’s participants gained important and valuable personal skills that will enable them to proceed in media projects should they choose to, but also in life itself. These skills are transferable and contribute significantly to helping participants improve their potential, including becoming more job ready.

ITM has demonstrated that media has the power to attract and engage hard to reach groups and that that the process of collaborating in media work can build attributes like confidence, teamworking, good communication, negotiation, patience, trust and self-efficacy. These skills are vital to any individual competing in the job market, and to society as a whole.

Intended impact/ sustainability

Hi8us Projects Ltd (lead partner of ITM) gives young people across the UK the opportunity to gain experience of innovative media production, and a chance to tell their stories. Hi8us projects use the experience of creating media as a catalyst for changing lives.

Scatter plot

Process X
Practice X X
City Local Regional National European


ITM consisted of more than 25 UK partners and six European, Transnational partners.


The ITM partnership consisted of many projects, which primarily took place in the London, Birmingham and Leeds area.


As part of DigiTales project ITM worked with partners to create films with Roma people in Slovakia, to Muslim women in the Netherlands, to excluded young people in Cornwall and refugees in Leeds.

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Final report

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Main outputs

Activities and products

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