After almost two decades working in the hair and makeup industry herself, Victoria Farrelly now passes on her skills to a new generation of beauty professionals.
“I was 13 years old when I started working alongside my mum,” says Victoria. “At the time she was a hairdresser and makeup artist on a Ridley Scott film and as soon as I arrived on set in sunny Cape Town, I fell in love with the film industry.”
In the years that followed Victoria worked on music videos with the likes of Robbie Williams and Texas, and commercials for leading global fashion brands. But it was in 2016 after working for seven years as a Lead Media Makeup Teacher at an Ofsted Grade 1 College, and on the completion of her Diploma in Teaching, that she decided to take a leap and created the Global Makeup Hair and Productions Academy (GMUA).
Now CEO, Victoria, along with her growing team of tutors, stylists, and experts, offers an alternative route into education for anyone over the age of 13; including high-quality, flexible, and accessible courses in a wide range of subjects like hairdressing and barbering, makeup, modelling and fashion, media, film and photography.
“The heartbeat of GMUA lies in the desire to give everyone an opportunity to be self-employed in a creative industry they love,” says Victoria. “Alongside our on-site training all our students also complete placements giving them invaluable business experience and entrepreneurial guidance.”
First introduced to Kindred in 2020, Victoria applied for funding towards the cost of employing someone to support her in the day-to-day running of GMUA freeing her time to focus on developing and delivering the courses that mean so much to her.
“Thanks to Kindred’s support GMUA has grown 300% financially over the past two years, which in turn has allowed us to reach even more aspiring young talent across the Liverpool City Region,” says Victoria. “What we do extends way beyond traditional training. We have become a beacon of hope and transformation, a place where long-held dreams become a reality.”
By actively engaging with a variety of stakeholders, including local authorities, care workers, and NEETs agencies to identify individuals on the cusp of decision-making GMUA tailor their mentorship programs and vocational courses to create opportunities for all.
“So far, we have been able to support a number of women who have fled domestic abuse as well as women asylum-seekers and refugees. We are also currently training eight students to teach further courses for us and are in the process of creating a working salon in Liverpool to enable our graduates to make a good living and get the support they need to start their own businesses in the future.”
Victoria concludes, “Afterall, it’s about creating a ripple effect of positivity, raising aspirations and empowering others to achieve great things with no barriers or boundaries.”