Giving underrepresented talent a voice, we sit down with The Kusp founder Amos Eretusi to talk about his organisation that is paving the way for a brighter future.

The media and creative industries have long been vibrant and dynamic sectors. Yet, they often remain dominated by those of privileged backgrounds, creating economic barriers and limiting access to resources, networks and opportunities for those who are not of the same ilk. As a result a cycle is perpetuated, where talent from underrepresented communities goes untapped with their voices stifled by systemic bias.


This is where organisations like The Kusp step in as beacons of hope, dedicated to dismantling barriers and fostering inclusivity within the creative industry. Founded by Amos Eretusi, The Kusp focuses on improving access for underrepresented talent from ethnic minorities, lower socio-economic, neurodivergent and disabled groups within the creative media industries. Through a multifaceted approach, they address the systematic challenges hindering the progression of those with limited resources, offering a supportive network and tangible pathways to success.


At the core of The Kusp’s mission lies a dedication to empowerment through education and mentorship. Recognising that knowledge is power, they provide workshops, masterclasses and ‘secret sessions’ tailored to equip individuals with the skills and insights needed to thrive.


Now offering an exclusive membership called The Kusp Club—curated for under-represented creatives to connect and excel—the organisation stands at the apex of its journey so far. To delve deeper into the ethos of The Kusp, we sit down with its founder Amos to explore the organisation’s mission and how it’s paving the way for a brighter future.

Amos, can you tell us about the journey that led to the founding of The Kusp and what inspired you to create this community and NFPO?

It was a bit unorthodox. I actually went to university to study Civil Engineering before stumbling into managing music artists and social influencers. Quickly I realised there was a strong interest amongst creatives from ethnic minority and lower socio-economic groups in my community in South London, who also wanted to get management. But being a person that prides themselves on ‘quality over quantity’, I couldn’t commit to all of them but I also didn’t want to completely turn them away so I created a pathway through events and experiences to access insights and opportunities they weren’t being exposed to.


Representation is so important, in more ways than just one. Going to large-scale networking events, I realised that they were good for building community but tended to lend themselves well to more extroverts. Being an introvert myself, I wanted to create an inclusive space for introverted creatives while still being inclusive for extroverts. Allowing people to build more authentic and personal industry relationships.


Our main goal became prioritising access to industry insights, networks, and work opportunities for creatives from underrepresented backgrounds. Our events, designed for introverts and accessible to extroverts, have helped diverse creatives secure full-time roles, mentorships, and representation with top industry professionals.

The Kusp focuses on improving access for under-represented talent within the creative media industries. What specific challenges do these groups face that your organisation aims to address?

Absolutely, it’s our main priority. There’s so many great things that come from improving access, and the challenges we address have resulted in our three key pillars as an organisation. Listening to creatives, we realised access to ‘industry insights’‘networks’ and ‘work opportunities’ is lacking for creatives from ethnic minority, lower-socioeconomic, neurodivergent and disabled groups.


With that in mind, alongside our ethos of ‘curated for introverts and accessible for extroverts’, we have curated masterclasses, workshops, launched a membership for under-represented creatives and mentorship schemes, and shared industry opportunities. It has led to creatives landing full-time roles at reputable creative employers, securing ongoing support from the best-in-class industry specialists, and getting signed to world-renowned production companies or talent agents.

You’ve collaborated with major companies like Puma, Channel 4, and the University of the Arts London. How have these partnerships helped The Kusp in achieving its mission?

All these collaborations have been great, honestly. They all help with improving access to industry insights, improved networks and job prospects for our creatives. We have delivered masterclasses with industry specialists at Puma and Channel 4, and been trusted to share job opportunities for these companies with over 700 under-represented within our creative community.


We have had the pleasure of working with UAL – one of a few academic institutions we work with – for the past 6-years. Working in collaboration with the Creative Shift team there, we’ve delivered 6-week programmes with support from industry specialists to aid under-represented students in taking their creative ideas to the next level. This is a great way for creatives to grow in their career confidence, access industry networks, build on their soft skills and go on to land industry jobs – which we have witnessed first-hand.

Masterclasses and ‘Secret Sessions’ are integral parts of The Kusp’s offerings. Could you tell us a bit about on how these experiences benefit creatives and what participants can expect to gain from them?

Masterclasses and ‘Secret Sessions’ are designed to be intimate and are delivered in collaboration with reputable industry specialists who share their career journeys, providing specific insights or feedback within a specialised area in fashion, film, television or print media. Up to 30 creatives can attend masterclasses, and up to 5 for ‘Secret Sessions’ which are more personalised portfolio reviews. We take a more informal and conversational approach to our experiences, making it easier for attendees and industry specialists to feel connected to the person, not just their role. This also creates a great opportunity to know who’s in the room – whether that’s virtual or in-person – and leads to specialists sharing advice/guidance that is more personal and free-flowing.


Intimate, smaller-sized rooms ensure everyone is heard and noticed, providing valuable insights and connections for career advancement. Many creatives have been signed to production companies through our ‘secret sessions’ or landed their first directorial debut on large networks by asking the right questions and connecting with key contacts at our masterclasses.

The Kusp’s membership provides access to exclusive job opportunities and mentorship. What impact has this had on the career trajectories of your members?

We have seen creatives go on to land their first industry jobs through us, and it’s given talent clarity on what is required from them in the industry in order to progress. As the saying goes, “Your network is your net worth”, so mentees have been introduced to some influential figures in the creative industries through mentorships that we have facilitated. Whether it’s from discussing a script with a mentor which has led to a pitch with a big broadcaster, to an ambitious photographer landing a BTS photography gig on the set of Sex Education on Netflix. As long as you’re putting in the work, you’re just one contact away from where you deserve to be.

You emphasise creating an ‘intimate and inclusive community’ for diverse creatives. How do you ensure that The Kusp remains a supportive and accessible space for its members?

By listening, instead of just doing things. We started this journey by listening to the challenges that creatives have faced, and it has led us to this point. We want to continue on that pathway and find sustainable solutions to the accessibility issues that we understand that our underserved creatives face.

In a society where networking often depends on privilege, how does The Kusp help under-represented creatives build meaningful industry relationships?

For anyone that’s been in our community for a while will know I love to set up an intro, particularly when we host in-person events. We all value advocates who speak on our behalf, especially in rooms that we don’t know exist. Therefore, for creatives who engage with us and share what they’re working on or industry challenges they may have, we often connect them with industry specialists or like-minded creatives through warm introductions that could help them. Even if it’s not the exact person they may need, people know people, so other connections can still be made.

What are some of the biggest challenges that underrepresented talent face in the creative media industries, and how does The Kusp address these challenges?

There are a few barriers that under-represented talent experiences, especially when some challenges can be specific to some underserved groups. The most common we notice is systemic bias and discrimination within hiring practices and workplace cultures, where unconscious biases often lead employers to favour candidates who fit traditional norms or come from privileged backgrounds. Another is limited access to education and training; individuals from ethnic and lower socio-economic backgrounds may face barriers to accessing quality education and training opportunities in creative fields. Cut budgets and inadequate funding in the creative industries contribute towards this, unfortunately. Lastly, I would say structural inequities and economic disparities; such as systemic racism, sexism, poverty, and unequal access to resources can create barriers for individuals from the groups we serve. Economic disparities may limit access to internships, unpaid opportunities, or low-paying entry-level positions, further perpetuating inequalities in the industry.

Your organisation targets ‘Above The Line’ talent in various creative fields. How do you identify and select individuals for your community, and what criteria do you use to ensure they are the right fit?

We prioritise support for under-represented communities that we serve – ethnic minority, lower socioeconomic, neurodivergent or disabled groups. We do our best to stay connected with the creative community by working with academic institutions or other creative organisations in the space doing great work. This allows us to build our talent pipeline and build relationships with ‘Above The Line’ and also ‘Below The Line’ talent across various creative fields that could get value from engaging with The Kusp.

How do you measure the success and impact of The Kusp’s initiatives on the creative community it serves?

From a wider perspective, we deem success as a greater representation within the creative industries which is reflective of society. Currently, 16% of people working in the creative industries are from working-class backgrounds, while 11% of creative jobs are filled by ethnic minority groups in the UK. 48% of people are working class in the UK, and 18% identify as being from an ethnic minority group. By doing our part through our curated experiences, through surveys and qualitative insights we monitor improvements in creatives’ capabilities (skills and knowledge), increase access to job opportunities and creative networks, and improve career confidence amongst creatives. As a social enterprise, we are working towards impacting 1000 creatives annually, with 90% experiencing increased career confidence.

What advice would you give to other organisations looking to create similar initiatives to support underrepresented talent in various industries?

Understand the needs of the community or group you’re supporting – as them questions, and always be mission-driven.


Don’t be alarmed or concerned if you need to pivot, your organisation should be in service of under-represented groups, let them have input into what you’re building – they form the core of your community – before making an informed decision.


Don’t rush it, or you’ll ruin it. Anything that has a legacy takes time to build.


Last thing I would say is, build allies on the mission you are on. Social impact work can’t be done alone, and in a world where people see things as competitive, it’s easy for your mission to turn from “we” to “me”. One thing I’ve learnt on this journey is that no one organisation can solve all the issues, work with all the brand partners or serve every single creative. So there’s space. If there’s alignment, collaborate.

Looking ahead, what are your future goals for The Kusp and how do you plan to expand its impact on the creative media industries?

In short, we’re looking to continue our expansion across the UK, and then into regions within Europe. Looking for ways to improve access both offline and online. We are working on streamlining the way creative employers find top under-represented creatives in the UK and abroad, more to come on that soon! Ultimately, The Kusp will be an ecosystem for upskilled creatives from under-represented communities to access opportunities, and thrive within the fashion, film, TV and print media industries – or other media sectors – locally, nationally and globally. That’s what we are working towards.