We've added our voice to a national housing campaign

We've added our voice to a national housing campaign Image

We’re involved in a national campaign which explores the role housing associations play in solving the UK’s housing crisis.

The Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) launched the campaign at its annual housing conference in Manchester on Tuesday 26 June 2018 with a new-format programme introduced by national newsreader Natasha Kaplinsky.

The programme, produced in partnership with ITN Productions, explores the challenges facing the housing sector and includes a featured interview with Terrie Alafa CBE, Chief Executive of the CIH, plus sponsored content from associations, like us, who demonstrate how they go beyond being a landlord.

In introducing us, Natasha Kaplinksy said: “As housing organisations work to support their tenants in an evolving economic, social and political landscape, the role of the housing officer is vital. One of the many ways Ongo is helping its residents is through education and employment.”

In 2017/18, more than 800 people accessed our employment support service, and more than 450 were helped with life skills coaching. A further 87 young people, aged under 19, received one-to-one mentoring.

As a direct result of this support, 147 people got jobs. Many more increased their skills and opportunities through work placements and volunteering.

Steve Hepworth, Chief Executive here at Ongo, said: “We believe that to make a lasting change in peoples’ lives, and subsequently to the social and economic health of our communities, we have to look beyond providing an affordable home.

“We have a unique role in our communities. Our staff have professional relationships with our tenants, we understand many of their needs, which are sometimes very complex, and we recognise the barriers they often have to overcome.

“We know that whilst good quality, affordable housing is the basic need of everyone, sustaining a tenancy and contributing to society relies on people having support, education and ultimately employment.

“It is for this reason that we established our employment support team and recruitment agency, Ongo Recruitment, and are driven to making a lasting change to peoples’ lives, and wider communities, where we can.”

The work that we do around employment and training attracted the interest of the CIH campaign, which explores a range of issues being tackling by housing associations nationally, from the challenge of meeting rural housing need to tackling areas of high deprivation.