Our Story

NEKO Trust is the music industry charity that supports early-career creatives. Founded in 2005 under the name CATO Trust, the charity subsequently changed its name in 2018.

We are here to help build a sustainable future for music and live events by developing the next generation of talent and providing a home for creativity. Like our mascot, Maneki Neko (aka the beckoning cat), we are working to bring prosperity and good fortune to those we support!


At NEKO, our mission is to help the next generation of music and live events talent reach their potential.

Our vision is to create a more sustainable live events industry, underpinned by a diverse, skilled, dynamic workforce.

We aim to:

  • Identify diverse music talent both on and offstage to improve equality and inclusion across the music industry.
  • Train music talent in a range of skills taught by industry professionals, so they are more employable and able to make their own work. 
  • Propel music talent forward through their formalisation as a co-operative, their participation in creative retreats, and commissioning and shadowing opportunities. 
  • House music talent by providing them with affordable writing rooms, studios, and production suites as part of an Occupants Charter.
  • Digitise the output of music talent so as to increase profile, develop commercial propositions, showcase philanthropy, and share resources.

Our values are:

  • To include everyone
  • To innovate and elevate
  • The power of partnerships
  • People focussed
  • Excellence in our delivery


We know that a life in music and live events brings many rewards; but we know it can also be physically and emotionally demanding. And COVID-19 has brought with it additional challenges. With the industry in a state of flux, there is anxiety about the future and, for many, job insecurity. NEKO believes that developing emotional and physical resilience can help us all to face the future head on and be industry ready. That’s why we partner with dIRTY dOG YOGA to offer support to our creative community.

Mental health equals mental wealth, and an overactive mind can lead to a sick body. Studies show that regular yoga practice is known to be beneficial for people with a range of health conditions including lower back pain, depression and stress. Using just your own body weight as resistance, the dIRTY dOG YOGA workout will help you reach your peak potential physically and mentally, and enjoy the calm energy you’ll create. Creative minds race at a thousand miles an hour. 

At NEKO - we understand, we sympathise and we stand next to you on the mat!