52 minutes | Jun 11th 2020

Music: enterprise, education, excellence with Yasin El Ashrafi, HQ Recording

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Yasin El Ashrafi left school aged 15 and did a series of stopgap jobs before figuring out what he wanted to do.

But when his son was born with a cord around his neck and diagnosed with cerebral palsy, Yasin lost his job because he wanted to look after him and attend his medical appointments.

He decided he didn't want to go back to working for someone else – and would build his own business, allowing him to set his own hours – and based on his own passion.

Yasin piloted his first music project, which led on to him attaining a teaching qualification, starting more projects teaching music and enterprise skills, and taking on a professional recording studio.

Now Yasin is the Managing Director of HQ CAN Community Interest Company and the owner of HQ Recording Studio and HQ Familia in Leicester.

Over the last 8 years, Yasin has offered free studio space to unemployed young people to explore their talents. HQ Creative Arts Network supports vulnerable and unemployed adults, using music and spoken word creation, music studio recording, events, and performances to combat mental ill-health, addiction issues and low confidence.

The business, a social enterprise, generates its own income streams through commercial studio hire, mastering and artist development services, and gives participants a way of making an income and a sense of purpose, with their activities often leading to employment. Yasin was named Mentor of the Year by The Prince’s Trust in 2018.

In this episode Yasin covers:

  • how HQ supports people – and generates income
  • the impact of being named Mentor of the Year
  • generating multiple revenue streams
  • ambitious but realistic advice for people wanting a career in the music industry
  • how Covid-19 has affected the work he does
  • his biggest sources of inspiration, advice and support
  • the commitment to excellence in everything HQ does – and his longterm plans

It's a riveting chat and I hope you enjoy it.

Also in the show, updates about a green business recovery and more.

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