The poverty issue
Welcome to Issue 22 of the Greater Manchester Housing Providers anti-poverty newsletter, shining a light on the work we do to help reduce poverty and some of the projects and communities we work with. Our cover picture shows the new intake of apprentices at Salix Homes. Also in this issue we have contributions from;
Athena and Motiv8
Bolton at Home
First Choice Homes Oldham
Southway Housing Trust
Trafford Housing Trust
The Good Food Bag This month I had the pleasure of meeting up with two of our GM colleagues, Jacqui Grimes from Irwell Valley HA and Will McLoughlin from One Manchester, who have spent their summer working as part of the NHF People Powered Team. I’d been given the heads up early on that they were working on a project related to poverty so I was really hopeful that they’d come up with a great idea that we could all get behind. I wasn’t disappointed. So what is it? As Will explained, they were inspired by two things; firstly food deserts where the nearest fresh food is miles away or is in a local convenience store at a premium price, secondly, that people who are financially poor can also be time poor due to working two jobs or putting in extra hours. The result is the Good Food Bag, a bag of ingredients plus recipe to make a good quality meal to feed a family for under a fiver that can be collected from a convenient location. The team are now looking at how they can make this happen and you can find out more on the website https://www.thegoodfoodbag.com/ or by following them on Twitter @thegoodfoodbag Stigma We’ve previously touched on this subject when we reported on the JRF work Talking About Poverty. More recently it’s been highlighted in the Social Housing Green Paper though few solutions were offered. The green paper describes how tenants often feel they are treated as “second-class citizens” and “benefits scroungers”, rather than “honest and hardworking”. A recent article in Inside Housing asks if we are part of the problem when we use phrases such as ‘protecting the most needy and vulnerable’ or ‘turning people’s lives around’. One of our poverty pledges is to improve staff awareness and understanding of poverty through training and this was inspired by work done in the field of social work to challenge perceptions and reduce stigma. Contact me if you’d like more information on this. Good Policy for Good Food - A toolbox of local authority food policy levers Sustainable Food Cities have produced a really useful guide for those of us who are trying to work with local authorities to combine efforts on food poverty and food sustainability. This guide provides a toolbox of food policy levers, along with clear practical examples of where these have been successfully used including Specifying food shops as ‘essential retail’ in the Local Plan can enable local planners to restrict applications for a change of use from this specific shop type to one less essential which would normally not require planning permission. It could, for example, prevent a greengrocer being replaced by a hairdresser. Brent Council offers business rate reductions for businesses signing up to Living Wage.
Manchester City Council (p53) and partners granted residents free use of a previously derelict site for a meanwhile growing project.
Developing a Good Employment Charter for Greater Manchester The GMCA consulted earlier this year on what a Good Employment Charter might look like and the GM Living Wage Campaign facilitated some feedback sessions which have previously been reported in this newsletter.
Based on this feedback they’ve now produced a draft charter which is open for consultation. The survey closes on 18th November, submit your views here. Women's saving schemes: a new resident-led approach to reducing poverty A new network of women's savings schemes is emerging in Greater Manchester. Savings groups are a new way of bringing local residents together for mutual support while also creating a small buffer that can help in difficult times. As memberships grow, and members share stories about their day to day lives and the place where they live, people start thinking about other kinds of action they can take together. There are now savings groups in Manchester, Salford and Stockport and the existing groups are keen to meet other women's residents groups across Greater Manchester to share ideas. For more information contact Sophie King at firstname.lastname@example.org. Social Value A huge shout out must go to our colleagues working on the social value agenda which has some clear overlap to our anti-poverty work. Some achievements from the last year include 2219 residents supported into employment £14 million going into our customers pockets through support with benefits and grants The infographic showing all our social value outcomes is on the back page. As usual you are very welcome to send your feedback or suggestions for the next issue to Julie.Ralph@boltonathome.org.uk 3 3
ATHENA MOTIV8 PROGRAMME Motiv8 is a programme to help people aged 25 and over in Greater Manchester improve their lives and chances of getting back into work. It has been set up thanks to funding from National Lottery through the Big Lottery Fund and European Union through the European Social Fund (2014-2020) as part of the Building Better Opportunities Programme.
Mark’s Motiv8 story
Before Mark contacted Motiv8 he was living in a hostel. He had realised that he was an alcoholic and had signed up for help through Alcoholics Anonymous and also a 14-month rehabilitation programme, who put him in touch with Motiv8. Mark was keen to find employment and also improve his housing situation – something that became crucial when he unexpectedly became the full-time parent for his young daughter. At this time he was in the middle of construction and maintenance training programme. Mark was getting fantastic feedback about his attitude and behaviour, but was worried that he would not be able to continue due to his care and responsibilities for his daughter. However, with help from Motiv8 and the programme organisers, Mark was able to continue with the training and passed with flying colours. Mark said; “I received some great feedback and they said they were very impressed with me. In fact, shortly after the training programme ended they called me in for an interview and I’ve now secured a Mature Apprenticeship position in carpentry. This has always been my dream job, doing up houses, and I can’t wait to get started.”
ATHENA MOTIV8 PROGRAMME In addition to this, Mark has been given the keys to a new home in an area that is in a perfect location for his daughter’s school and his new job. He also recently celebrated two years without a drink. He said: “Motiv8 has been supporting me every step of the way – and the crucial thing is that they said ‘what do YOU want to do’ and then they provided great guidance and support to make it happen. I can’t thank Motiv8 enough.”
Lights, Camera, Action! Motiv8 on location!
Mark is one of Motiv8’s latest case studies/success stories. Look out for his case study and other inspiring stories from Motiv8 participants who shared their Motiv8 journey during a recent filming shoot at the Wai Yin Society’s Welcome Centre in Cheetham Hill. Wai Yin is one of the programmes specialist partners, providing support to help participants get back on track.
New Charter Homes (part of the Jigsaw Group) is leading the Motiv8 programme with support from other Manchester Athena housing providers at Stockport Homes, ForViva, Wythenshawe Community Housing Group and Bolton at Home. Further information about Motiv8 and the eligibility criteria for the programme, can be found on their website www.motiv8mcr.org or call 0161 331 2048 or email email@example.com. You can also follow them on Twitter @Motiv8GM.
BOLTON AT HOME Peer Navigators Bolton at Home has been piloting a ‘place based integration’ on the Johnson Fold estate in Bolton. PBI is a whole system approach based on the following principles:
Integrated service delivery across the whole system in a place A focus on early intervention and prevention Taking a holistic approach to the needs of the person in their context (including physical, mental, social and environmental needs) Developing a new relationship with people and communities, helping people to help themselves Developing new behaviours, skills and roles in the public service workforce
At neighbourhood level, the focus is on integrated place-based services that are able to be responsive to local need and build on the assets of the community. This means one front-line team, knowing their area and each other. Through this approach people are co-designing new solutions and services. An example of these new solutions has been the creation of Peer Navigator roles on the Johnson Fold estate. For the first time, Bolton at Home has employed local residents from our own estates to work in their own community. In partnership with Bolton CVS, local people have been employed to forge links between public sector initiatives such as PBI, the local community sector and individuals. Four local women were appointed in March 2018. All are Bolton at Home tenants and all were not in employment or training. Managed by Bolton at Home staff working in the neighbourhood as part of the Community Investment Team, the Peer Navigators have focused on four themes – Storehouse Pantry, UCAN, Environmental and Women/Arts. Their work is to connect more individuals to the community sector offer, to support and enable individuals to access appropriate services and to promote self-care and behaviour change in people and the community. Their role is also listening to neighbours and local residents to understand and work out local issues and respond to these, as well as supporting community activities. The Peer Navigators have had amazing success in the first six months. They have used their community connections to gain a greater awareness and insight into community needs and 6 6
BOLTON AT HOME issues. They are able to provide local knowledge and intelligence that gives context and background to how and why issues occur. This enables us and the community to better respond to these needs and create projects and initiatives that will make a real difference locally. In the first six months, they have achieved the following: Six large community events (Litter Pick Event, Estate Walkabout, Big Tidy Up, Great Get Together, Holiday Kitchen Celebration and Public Anti-Social Behaviour Meeting)
Enhanced provision and increased participation within ten community projects Eight local community training courses Seven new community initiatives (Uniform Swap, Participation in Bolton Pride, Attending Octagon Theatre events, Healthy Lifestyles Group, UCAN Kids Holiday Club, Youth Initiative and Local food demonstrations at Pantry) 45 new Storehouse Pantry members Implementation of Environmental Improvement Action Plan with partners 104 local families / individuals ‘navigated’ to community projects or public services
In addition to the successes in the local community, the Peer Navigators have also experienced excellent personal achievements. One of the original team has now progressed into full time employment within Bolton at Home’s Contact Centre. They have all flourished and increased in confidence and awareness. They have had access to a wide range of training, opportunities and experiences within Bolton at Home and the local community including becoming a School Governor, participating in recruitment and selection and featuring in a report on BBC Radio Greater Manchester. The success of this model has led to a ‘roll out’ of the Peer Navigator role across other areas of Bolton. Bolton at Home’s Community Investment Team will now look to appoint more Peer Navigators from our communities across Bolton.
FIRST CHOICE HOMES OLDHAM The impact of Poverty on delayed hospital discharge and attendance at A&E Poverty can have a major impact on people’s health and their need to access health services. Hospitals are full of many people who are medically fit to leave, but through poverty don’t have access to homes or services that will keep them safe and enable them to be discharged. Our A&E services are clogged with many “frequent flyers” who present with nonclinical issues as they have nowhere else to go. First Choice Homes Oldham has joined the Oldham Urgent Care Alliance and is working directly with the main health and care providers in the town to introduce a range of innovative solutions to these long standing health and poverty pressures.
Delayed hospital discharge costs the NHS over £820m pa and loses 2.7m hospital bed days. First Choice Homes Oldham felt that it could help its local hospital reduce the number of delayed discharges due to housing and poverty issues by establishing an innovative Hosptial2Home Discharge Service. It partnered with the Royal Oldham Hospital, Oldham Council, Pennine Care Foundation Trust and eight other Housing Associations to run the project. First Choice Homes Oldham supplies a Housing Hospital2Home officer to work in the Integrated Discharge Team based at the Royal Oldham Hospital. The Hospital 2 Home officer works alongside hospital staff to identify patients who are at risk of delayed discharge due to housing issues and then seeks to address these issues as quickly as possible. This may involve rehousing from unsuitable homes, installing aids and adaptations, instigating repairs, cleaning, and providing advice for the homeless. To date Hospital2Home has assisted 182 hospitalised patients. One patient who was helped was a 56 year-old waiting for a below the knee amputation. He also suffered from various other health conditions that affected his mobility. The patient was unable to secure a surgery date until alternative accommodation or a plan can be arranged to enable his safe discharge post-surgery. In partnership with the occupational therapist the Hospital2Home Officer visited the gentleman at his home and quickly established how unsuitable his current property was for further adaptation. It was agreed that rehousing to a fully adapted two-bed bungalow or ground floor flat would be the only option to guarantee discharge and prevent a blockage in patient flow. 8 8
FIRST CHOICE HOMES OLDHAM The Hospital2Home Officer was able to help the gentleman secure a new home which meant that the surgery could go ahead in the knowledge that there will be no reason for any delays to his discharge once medically fit to leave hospital. This is an excellent example of partnership working to prevent any discharge delays prior to hospital admission and a great outcome for the patient
The Success of the Hospital2Home project led to the CCG and First Choice Homes Oldham to jointly fund an A&E to Home Service. This service started in September 2017. The service deals with people who are regularly presenting at A&E with nonclinically caused ailments and issues.
This can include drug abuse, homelessness, lack of GP or dental services etc. Again the housing association has based a member of staff at the hospital who works with reception and medical staff to identify people that can be assisted without medical intervention. The A&E service has had some fantastic results and has worked with 126 patients since the scheme began in September 2018. Many patients have been directed to appropriate services including the immigration Advisory Service, an Urgent Care Social Worker, the Hospital 2 Home Officer and the homelessness team in Rochdale. Other patients were dealt with directly and all the interventions have saved the hospital time and money. One A&E patient dealt with had been assaulted in his own home by two youths who had befriended him. The nurse who dealt with his physical issues realised he was vulnerable and that he had arrived at hospital without keys for his home or without his own clothing as the Police had taken them for forensic evidence. The patient also reported that he had no food at home. Once the patient was treated for his injuries in A&E the nurse passed him on to the A&E 2Home case worker who provided support to enable access to the manâ€™s home. They sorted some clothes for him, accompanied the patient to the Police station and home and arranged for a support worker to visit him the next day.
FORVIVA Affordable Warmth Strategy - Investment Programme Since 2008 one of our key commitments has been to tackle fuel poverty across the stock assets through a range of targeted investment activities as part of our wider Decency and capital investment programme.
This financial year ForViva is in the process of installing high efficiency Band A Vaillant Combi boilers meaning that over 95% of our total stock assets will contain a Band A primary heating and hot water appliance.
Based on the table above provided by The Energy Saving Trust, this yearâ€™s investment in new heating systems will result in total energy savings to tenants in excess of ÂŁ60,000.00/ annum. So far this year, in addition to heating installation works, we have installed new roofs to 102 properties. As part of these roofing works we will be bringing the loft insulation up to a minimum 300mm thickness thus improving the energy efficiency of the property and reducing energy needs. We will also be replacing draughty solid core timber doors and single glazed windows with new thermally efficient composite doors and double glazed UPVC windows to 173 properties. We have moved from an average stock asset SAP (energy efficiency) rating of 65.47 in 2008 to a rating of 74.29 at the beginning of this year. 10 10
FORVIVA Through this year’s investment activities this is anticipated to further increase to 74.50 by the end of this year. Inspiring Futures Inspiring Futures is a two part programme with the first stage being a creation of an after school family club to build relationships with families in the community. The second stage is to deliver a training and development programme based on the needs of the family to help the parents to volunteer in the community or gain qualifications to help them secure employment. ForViva work in partnership with St Pauls Peel Primary School, Westwood Primary School and Kick Start Community Interest Company to deliver the programme and the objective of the initiative is to
Improve customers opportunities of successfully gaining employment by proving to training and voluntary opportunities To reduce the number of unemployed customers Increase numbers of adult learners Increase numbers of available pathways into sustainable employment Increase saving to the public purse
To date the following has been achieved: 15 participants completed Healthy eating workshop 12 food hygiene qualifications 3 ICT course 1,423 individuals attending, including 78 families 40 family club sessions 18 participants completed Parenting class 6 Paediatric First aid courses qualified 5 food hygiene qualified 12 CV writing 3 completed introduction to childcare courses 30 attended the healthy cooking class Janet Williams who is the Head Teacher at St Paul’s Peel said, “Inspiring Futures has been a great additional to the school and the families are very much looking forward to the programme moving forward. As well as promoting healthy eating, exercise and providing a range of different activities the project has enabled the school to offer a weekly club and engage with a larger number of families than would be normally possible.” One of the parents who attended was claiming full housing benefit, receiving Income Support. She completed an English, Maths, First Aid, Child Care and Safeguarding qualifications and is now in full time employment. 11 11
GREAT PLACES Spotlight on: Holiday Hunger Everybody should have access to good food. Nobody should go to bed hungry. Unfortunately, the latter is sometimes the case in our communities — particularly in the summer holidays.
This summer our team of Community Development Co-ordinators and the Social Investment Team have been out in our communities, working together with local partners and schools to provide school holiday food provision alongside educational workshops around food waste, cooking on a budget and budgeting skills. These sessions not only supported our commitment to alleviate food poverty, but helped bring families together and combat social isolation during the holidays when the school network is closed. Here are some examples of projects that we supported throughout the summer. The Welcome Café, Knutsford The Welcome café in Knutsford ran a Kids Eat Free promotion with funding and marketing support from Great Places. Any adult purchasing a meal from The Welcome could claim up to two free children’s meals including a drink and a piece of fruit. Over the six weeks, 250 free meals were claimed making it a very popular and much needed project! Alongside the offer, we also worked in partnership with The Welcome Café to deliver a summer activity program for local families. This included day trips, messy play sessions and pamper parties as well as promoting the services on offer at the centre. Local resident Katy Watson said: “Myself and my two children attended the Welcome Café during the school holidays for a wonderful session called Curious Critters.
GREAT PLACES “We all had such a great time and it was brilliant that they were able to put on such a fantastic free event. We actually went back the same week to have some lunch there. We had a lovely meal and it was such good value for money. We will definitely be back!” Manchester Healthy Meals In Manchester, the use of food banks is becoming more common, especially over the school
holidays, which is why we teamed up with Proline and One Manchester to deliver healthy meals to local summer play schemes for the second year in a row. With the help of staff from both organisations and a group of young volunteers from the local community, all aged 13 to 17, the holiday scheme provided 2,700 healthy, balanced and varied meals for young people over the six weeks holidays! Michael Fraser, Group Managing Director of Proline, commented: “Proline is delighted to support Great Places and One Manchester by providing transport and a delivery driver each day over the six-week holiday. Not only is it a great opportunity for Proline to give back to the communities in which we operate, it also provides all of our employees with the chance to contribute individually by investing their time in such an important community project.” Oldham At Crossley Community Centre we hold brunch clubs where the local community can come for breakfast, lunch, and to meet other people in the area. This initiative is held during both summer and term time to support the local community and is extremely valuable.
REGENDA HOMES Summer 2018 in Limehurst & Hollinwood Working in partnership Regenda Homes, Oasis Hub and Onward Housing brought together an action packed summer programme of family activities.
Thanks to funding from Greggs, IF Oldham and Magic Radio we were able to offer meal provision at each of the sessions. Together we delivered a programme of arts and crafts, sports sessions and other activities. We delivered 28 sessions engaging with 1,372 people. The summer finale event finished off the summer with an exciting fun filled family event with a variety of activities which included a bouncy castle, live animals, drama, music, childrenâ€™s games, a fire engine, food, advice stalls and an ice cream van.
Oasis hub also arranged a trip to Blackpool zoo over the summer. Families were able to sign up for a Credit Union account, to make saving for the trip more manageable. Over 120 people attended and a great day was had by all.
SALIX HOMES New apprentices building a bright future Salix Homes has welcomed its newest cohort of apprentices into the fold.
The Salford-based housing association has five new apprentices, four of whom have joined its Repairs and Maintenance Service, while the fifth is learning the ropes in the Customer Service Team. Among the new recruits is 19-year-old Connor Boyle who had all but given up hope of getting his career back on track after applying for job after job but never hearing back. New-dad Connor, from Kersal, who welcomed his daughter into the world in June, said: “When I found out I’d got it, I was over the moon. I just want the chance to make a future for myself and my daughter. “I’d applied for so many different jobs and apprenticeships and had never been successful. I’d given up hope, but Salix Homes has been so supportive and all the way through the recruitment process, they made me believe I could do it – and now I know I can.” Connor is embarking on a plumbing apprenticeship, following in his grandad’s footsteps, and will be learning the tools of the trade four days a week while spending a day in the classroom with education providers Total People, working towards an NVQ. Over the past three years Salix Homes has created more than 50 apprenticeship positions through its Earn as You Learn programme, both within the organisation and with its partner contractors. Sue Sutton, executive director of operations at Salix Homes, said: “We are incredibly proud to welcome our newest cohort of apprentices onto our successful Earn as You Learn 15 15
SALIX HOMES apprenticeship programme, which is helping local people in Salford build themselves a bright future. “An apprenticeship is a fantastic route for not only the apprentice, but for Salix Homes as an employer too. They’re gaining essential skills and experience while getting paid, while for Salix Homes, we are providing opportunities for local people and building our workforce of the future.
“Our latest apprentice cohort will also benefit from the expertise and guidance of a dedicated mentor who will provide one-on-one support throughout their apprenticeship journey.” The new apprentices joining Salix Homes’ Repairs and Maintenance Team have been provided with new toolkits from our partner building merchants - Travis Perkins Managed Services. Maggie Devine, social value manager for Travis Perkins Managed Services, said: “We are passionate about supporting apprentices coming into the industry, and hope that the provision of these new tools will support them on their journey to train in their chosen profession. We wish them the best of luck through their apprenticeship and their future career.” Holiday club helps tackle isolation for Salford families A summer holiday club has been helping to tackle isolation for schoolchildren in Salford and bring families together. Throughout the summer holidays, children and their parents attended the Marlborough Road Academy holiday club in Broughton where they could tuck into a free hot meal and enjoy fun activities with their friends, including sports, dance and arts and crafts.
SALIX HOMES Salix Homes provided the club with £500 to help fund the food and activities on offer as part of its Springboard community grant programme, which supports local projects that boost community spirit, promote health and wellbeing, reduce isolation or improve the environment. Mum Sahira Chaudhrey, attended the holiday club with her three young children. She said: “As a parent it’s difficult to find activities over the summer to keep children entertained. There is a lack of local activities, money can add up quickly and things can get pretty tight.
“I was extremely grateful to be able to take my children to a place where they can join in with a variety of activities and get a great meal at the end of it.” Salix Homes has also provided £600 additional funding through its Springboard programme to enable the children and their parents, along with other local families, to enjoy a day trip to Knowsley Safari Park to mark the end of the summer holidays. Saimah Alam, who also attended the holiday club with her children, said: “The club has been a huge help to me. I have felt quite isolated in the past as it can be hard to find things to do for the kids all summer and this can turn out really expensive, so it’s great to be able to get out of the house and enjoy activities together as a family.”
Ben Cruickshanks, neighbourhood manager at Salix Homes, added: “For some people, the school holidays are about having fun with your family and friends, and visiting new and exciting places, but sadly this isn’t always the case for many local families. “The school holidays can increase the financial pressures on families, and they may also experience social isolation as trips out and activities can soon add up. “This is why Salix Homes is so proud to support the holiday club which has ensured that local families can still make sure their children enjoyed a fun-filled summer holiday with their friends without having to worry about the additional financial pressure.” The newly-formed holiday club was set up by Salford charity The Life Centre, on behalf of the Salford Food Network, and delivered in partnership with the Broughton Team Churches, which includes St James Higher Broughton and St Clement with St Matthias Lower Broughton, along with Marlborough Road School and Audacious Church. The initiative also received support from Salford Community Leisure, The Rio Ferdinand Foundation, Tesco and Salford Council’s catering service City Wide.
SOUTHWAY HOUSING TRUST Holiday breakfast club to tackle food poverty At Southway we are still very committed to our pledge to reduce food poverty and we know that the summer holidays puts struggling families, particularly larger families, under additional strain by having to provide extra meals and keep the children entertained.
The Withington Old Moat area of South Manchester has a greater than average number of families needing help, such as referral to food banks, so this summer we sponsored a breakfast club to help families in the area, delivered at the Old Moat Childrenâ€™s Centre. Children were provided with a healthy breakfast, a mid morning snack and half a day of activities. The food was supplied by FareShare and we were given so much that there was enough to provide parents with food parcels to take home each day. Over the holiday 780 children attended the club and 150 food parcels were given to parents. The children loved the activities which included six cooking sessions run by community cook Maz Linford, who also delivers cooking on a budget sessions for us at our Quids In food clubs. The children really enjoyed learning to cook and Maz made sure they got fully involved in preparing ingredients and all sat down afterwards to sample the results. Giving residents the confidence and skills to cook meals from fresh ingredients has been a particular priority for Southway. When we opened our Quids In food clubs members regularly mentioned they didnâ€™t know what to do with many of the foods on offer. Many had been relying on ready meals and take-aways which are generally unaffordable if living on a tight budget. Delivering sessions that enables members to cook using fresh ingredients not only results in a healthier diet but has helped households save a considerable amount of money. 18 18
SOUTHWAY HOUSING TRUST Employment support to improve health and wellbeing Southway are continuing to expand the employment support for tenants and recently secured funding from MCC to provide extra support for 2 of our learning hubs to offer extra one to one help and start job clubs. With Wythenshawe Community Housing Group and One Manchester we are also now helping to deliver additional employment support as part of the ‘Be Well’ project coordinated by Big Life.
The project will run for the next 2 and a half years. Referrals will originate from doctors’ surgeries and clients will then be linked by Big Life to the most appropriate support to improve their health and wellbeing, including help to find work. From November Southway, One Manchester and Wythenshawe will be each have 2 employment workers to deliver training and support in the community to help south Manchester residents secure sustainable work. Men in Sheds As part of our Age Friendly strategy we have established a Men in Sheds project which has proved popular elsewhere in the country. Older men can become particularly socially isolated and many are looking for activities where they can feel useful. Our Men in Sheds project mainly focuses on woodworking skills. Some of those attending have skills they want to pass on and others are keen to learn or just drop in for social reasons. So far members have completed a range of small jobs for local residents who have been delighted with the results. Devon Poyser, who has helped get the project going, is now supporting them to run it as a small commercial enterprise with profits reinvested to help the project expand.
Summer Fun for our #H3 families Stockport Homes works closely with H3. H3 – Helping the Homeless into Housing, supports individuals and families who are homeless in Stockport.
Bug hotels made by the children on the day trip to Tatton Park
H3 aims to build individuals confidence and stability through positive engagement activities that improve health and wellbeing. H3 supports families living in Stockport Homes temporary accommodation and created “Summer Fun for our #H3 families” a programme of positive engagement activities. Shelter states that homeless children are an invisible group that often go ignored. H3 works to ensure that this is not the case for homeless children living in Stockport. The impact of homelessness on children is massive and affects their health and educational achievements, their emotional well-being and overall life chances. H3 designed “Summer Fun for our #H3 families” to ensure that children had positive experiences over the six week summer break, as well as increasing their stability, self-esteem and confidence. The programme included a range of creative, physical and diversionary activities for families to access. These included weekly arts sessions, weekly cooking sessions, dancing classes, swimming sessions, cinema tickets, bowling trips and a day trip to Tatton Country Park. We removed barriers to engagement and provided families with access to transport enabling them to access free activities across Stockport and Greater Manchester. The programme gave children living in poverty to have similar experiences to other children, as well as giving families the chance spend time together and build healthy relationships. The activities were led by H3 staff, Stockport Homes staff, a group of dedicated H3 volunteers, and the cooking sessions were ran by local social enterprise 4Lunch. The sessions provided a positive outlet and created therapeutic experiences. Ultimately, the programme ensured the children had the opportunity to have fun, something every child 20 20
STOCKPORT HOMES should experience during the summer holidays regardless of their situation. The children loved the activities on offer. One child expressed at the second art club session “I’ve been waiting all week to come back and finish making my puppet and I wish I could stay at art club all week long”. The parents also thoroughly benefited from the activities and said it was a chance to meet other parents. One mum attending the cooking sessions stated, “My children have made friends and so have I. It’s not just about the food, but about getting together”.
The families H3 supports are struggling financially and often relying on foodbanks. The summer holidays in particular can be incredibly long and difficult for parents living in temporary accommodation. The “Summer Fun for our #H3 families” addressed these issues and created long lasting memories for children. Holiday Kitchen Throughout August 2018, families in Brinnington and Adswood were given the opportunity to join Stockport Homes in their ‘Holiday Kitchen’. For the fourth year running Stockport Homes, in Partnership with Brinnington Children’s Centre, delivered a series of six fun and engaging sessions for children aged 0 to 11. The six day programme offers structured play and learning activities with a healthy meal for children and their parents included. For the older children, it was an opportunity to work with their parents to produce healthy meals with fresh ingredients. For the Stockport Homes staff who were responsible for planning the sessions and preparing the healthy meals, it was both rewarding and physically exhausting! Holiday Kitchen is a scheme that looks to deliver on commitments born out of both the Child Poverty Act 2010 and the resultant Child Poverty Strategy 2014-17, released by the Department for Work and Pensions. This governmental policy recognised that, “the educational and health benefits of Free School Meals for children living in relative or absolute poverty are widely accepted, as are the financial benefits for low-income families. Together with the Pupil Premium, these two interventions form central pillars to the government’s Child Poverty Strategy” (HM Government, June 2014). Holiday Kitchen’s mission is to provide ‘holiday learning, food and play for families who need it most’. Despite the apparent simplicity of this agenda, research developed by the University of Birmingham has shown that families who receive free school meals often struggle to make ends meet outside of term time. These challenges can lead to financial and emotional strain on families, in addition to a reduction in wellbeing, cognitive functioning and school readiness of children. The research also recognised that this effect would be more acute in low income and vulnerable households. Stockport Homes is proud to working in partnership to address poverty related inequality experienced by some of the most vulnerable and marginalised families across the borough of Stockport. 21 21
STOCKPORT HOMES This year, Stockport Homes worked with 46 parents and their 94 children to tackle:
Low social inclusion (related outcomes include improved school readiness, safeguarding, family bonding and reduced opportunity gaps for social participation) Poor family nutrition and well-being (related outcomes include reduced food poverty, physical inactivity and poor mental health) Financial strain (related outcomes include reduced debt and financial strain)
After completing sessions including crafts, gardening, a ‘Road to Rio’ sports day, an orienteering challenge in a local park and cultural cooking, families provided feedback including the below:
34% of parents said that they now felt more confident supporting their children to try other things and half said they felt an improved confidence in doing activities with their child/children 89% of parents said that doing Holiday Kitchen has helped them get to know new people Parents said that Holiday Kitchen had helped their family have fun together, reduced them feeling stressed about what to do with the children, helped them financially, and helped their children to eat regular meals
We are now looking forward to sharing our learning with the other delivery partners and looking at ways to expand the HK programme into other areas of the borough next year. For more info contact: Phillip Worthington, 0161 218 1454 Customers into Customer Service Roles Stockport Homes is always looking for innovative ways to attract new talent to the work force and ensure equality of opportunity for all. In September 2018 we ran a customer service course to give people an opportunity to work at Stockport Homes in related roles. We used social media and internal and external marketing to attract customers and their families to consider a career at Stockport Homes. The results of the campaign were excellent with 54 individuals registering an interest in attending the training. 31 people attended and 14 people were chosen following an assessment centre to attend a 3 day course that gave individuals a chance to hone their customer service skills. The course covered communication skills, interview techniques, confidence building, an accredited safeguarding course and the opportunity to handle real life phone calls. This time we had five vacancies available for people to work in Carecall, our 24 hour monitoring service for older or vulnerable people. All the participants on the course were guaranteed an interview.
STOCKPORT HOMES The programme was a real success for Stockport Homes with 3 people offered positions and other participants now being offered additional support to find work. After the programme 3 people were offered positions with other participants offered additional support to find work. Stockport Homes will continue to use this method for recruitment where vacancies allow to help customers learn new skills and access career opportunities with an excellent employer.
Supporting people into home ownership through shared ownership Stockport Homes started building new affordable homes back in 2009 when ALMOs were first permitted to bid for Homes England (then Homes and Communities Agency) capital grant funding. Since then the organisation’s development programme has grown and today Viaduct, Stockport Homes’ development arm, builds around 200 new homes each year within the Borough of Stockport. The tenure of new homes constructed includes affordable or social rent, supported housing and shared ownership. Average house prices in Stockport are significantly higher than in neighbouring Boroughs such as Manchester and Tameside making getting onto the property ladder a challenge for local people, particularly those on low incomes. Consequently shared ownership is proving to be very popular in Stockport with new developments frequently selling entirely off plan. To date Stockport Homes has sold 195 new homes for shared ownership and the data in relation to our buyer’s profiles makes for interesting reading. 77% of our buyers have been first time buyers which demonstrates how shared ownership is facilitating new entrants to the housing market. 14% of our buyers are key workers and 86% of our buyers are Stockport residents with the majority of the remaining buyers coming from Manchester, Tameside, or Cheshire East. 31% of our buyers are aged 19-29 and 30% are 30-39. Most interestingly however is that 44% of our buyers had a household income of between £20,000 and £30,000, and 32% of our buyers had a household income of below £20,000 which means that shared ownership in Stockport really is enabling households on low incomes to achieve their aspirations of home ownership. 23 23
TRAFFORD HOUSING TRUST Trafford Housing Trust invests £1m to tackle poverty Trafford Housing Trust has just celebrated the first year of their new Social Investment Fund (SIF) which aims to reduce poverty and inequality in the borough. The Trust’s Social Investment Team and Board were joined by a range of colleagues, stakeholders and some of the organisations who’ve received support from the team.
Held at the Trust’s flagship health and wellbeing hub, Limelight, the event was a chance to recognise the people who dedicate their time and effort to help others and marked the achievements of the first year of the Social Investment Fund and looked to the work ahead. Chair of the Social Investment Board, Steve Hughes, talked through aims of the SIF which are based on a ‘5-step plan’ produced by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation study – ‘We can solve poverty in the UK’. By offering a mix of micro, mid-sized and large grants and capacity building support the SIF aims to support existing organisations and new projects in Trafford to: Strengthen families and communities Boost incomes and reduce costs Improve education standards and raise skills Promote long-term economic growth benefitting everyone. Since its launch in September 2017, the SIF has awarded 109 grants totalling £1,101,836 (estimated to benefit over 90,000 people) and capacity building support to local groups such as: The Golden Centre of Opportunities who work with the Somali Community providing employment and skills support. You can find out how this vital support has helped them in this video - https://youtu.be/WA6cMcGi7-U The Cyril Flint Befriending Service who provide support and companionship for people living on their own which you can see in this moving video - https://youtu.be/ cySgS2xyauM 24 24
TRAFFORD HOUSING TRUST The day highlighted how well the Social Investment Team are thought of by the people they support which is apparent from the great feedback received on the day: “Huge thanks to you and all the team. Wish all funders understood 'life on the ground' as well as you do.”
“We had a great evening, it was lovely to speak to people and chat about what we do. The evening was very inspiring and I think what you are all doing is amazing.” “Really impressed with the work that THT are doing in Trafford. It would be great to share your good practise across GM.” Manager of the Social Investment Team – Tom Wilde says: “It was fantastic to have so many people join us to celebrate one year of the Social Investment Service. We have committed over £1m in grant funding since launching 12 months ago, supporting over 100 projects which provide a range of much needed services for people across Trafford, including THT’s customers. We also have a strong pipeline of projects coming through, and expect to be investing even more than this next year! The success of the event and the feedback we have already received is a credit to the whole team and the excellent work they do. If you know anyone who may be able to help reduce poverty and inequality in Trafford point them in the direction of the social investment website: http://socialinvestment.traffordhousingtrust.co.uk/ You can follow the work of the team and the organisations they support, you can follow them on social media at: www.facebook.com/THTSocialInvest/ https://twitter.com/THTSocialInvest 25 25
HOUSING FUTURES AND COMMUNITY LED HOUSING
What can community-led housing offer people on low incomes? In 2018, a new network of interested people and organisations have begun meeting through a series of events organised by the Housing Futures partnership in Greater Manchester. Housing Futures have been carrying out research to try and think through what all the new excitement about community-led housing in the UK means for areas of Greater Manchester that have experienced long-term deprivation. The events have looked at Housing Cooperatives, older peoples Cohousing, and Community Land Trusts, as well as considering the political environment in Greater Manchester for community-led alternatives. The next event considers what it really means for housing, and other neighbourhood development processes, to be community-led, what this entails, and what the different benefits may be beyond affordable housing. Importantly, there will be a focus on how such a process can be made to work in low income communities. As well as sharing insights from the soon to be launched Housing Futures research, we will have help addressing these questions from some international experts on community-led housing. The panel will include Professor Diana Mitlin from the Global Development Institute, and two activists from a long established shelter-based movement in Kenya who are affiliated with Slum/Shack Dwellers International - a savings-based movement that has grown into one of the biggest grassroots movements in the world. International lessons on community-led housing, Free Eventâ€”6.00-8.30pm, Thursday 1st November, Friends Meeting House, Central Manchester. Details can be found here. The final event in this series will be the launch of both our research and the GM Community Led Housing Network which takes place on Saturday 8th December, 1-4.30pm. The panel will include Paul Dennett, Salford City Mayor and GMCA Housing Portfolio holder. You can register for this free event here.
You can find out more about the work of Greater Manchester Housing Providers by following them on Twitter @GMHousing Or visit the website for the latest news www.gmhousing.co.uk 26 26
OUR SOCIAL VALUE ACHIEVEMENTS
Shining a light on the poverty reduction work done by Greater Manchester Housing Providers and some of the projects and communities we work...
Published on Oct 18, 2018
Shining a light on the poverty reduction work done by Greater Manchester Housing Providers and some of the projects and communities we work...