Children and young people: briefings and good practice

The Northern Housing Consortium are developing a work programme around children and young people. The programme will explore and understand:

  • What members are doing around children and young people and how this fits into their wider business strategy
  • Key priorities around children and young people
  • Key issues faced by this group
  • Share good practice and learning
  • Raise the profile of work housing providers are doing with children and young people

As part of this work programme the NHC will be producing a series of briefings around ‘What Housing Does’. These briefings will cover themes around:

  • Communication and engagement: this will include housing organisations’ approaches and how they are giving young people a voice, and different ways of communicating/engaging via social media, youth forums/councils etc.
  • Housing: hearing views of children and young people on their housing experiences, either in a family setting or individual tenancies, covering what support is in place around accessing the right accommodation and sustaining tenancies and/or addressing issues in current accommodation
  • Education: how are housing providers working with local education institutions? What focus is there on early intervention? Do you have the right balance? What are the gaps? Any developments around holiday provision to address food poverty over school holidays and beyond
  • Training, skills, enterprise and employment: the role of housing providers in supporting young people in obtaining skills and training, preparing them for work and for employment and apprenticeship opportunities. What housing providers doing to support young entrepreneurs, including improving aspiration and confidence. This follows on from the current work being done around this.

The briefings will include:

  • Case studies of different approaches adopted across the different themes
  • Young peoples’ experiences
  • The case for housing providers and the impact this is having, including partners involved and any parliamentary activity/engagement

We would like to hear from our members around any good practice around the above themes, and if any would like to be included as case studies for the briefings. If you have anything that you would like to share or would like further information please contact Satty Rai.

Healthy eating funding: call for proposals from social landlords

It is Public Health England’s (PHE) mission to improve the nation’s health and to address inequalities; tackling poor diet is therefore a key priority to helping people live longer and healthier lives.

Obesity reduction is one of PHE’s ‘big ambitions’ over the short and longer term to improve public health. Social landlords are important players in local communities and are in a unique position to offer support to achieving healthier lifestyles.

PHE would like to work with social landlords to help people improve their diet and eat more healthily and is seeking to fund small scale pilot projects, of around five to six months’ duration, will enable this.

The focus of these projects will aim to:

  • help people achieve improvements to diet
  • address barriers to behaviour change
  • demonstrate the role of social landlords in supporting this

As such, measuring and evaluating impact will be a key element of any project and the PHE will require a short report detailing impact and lessons learned, which we will use to support the development of guidance to be disseminated to a wider audience in the longer term.

PHE is now inviting proposals for funding for pilot projects. In the first instance, PHE are looking for a brief project plan by Friday 19th September 2014.

On the basis of this summary plan, a shortlist of organisations will then be invited to provide further details to PHE.

Further details and project specification can be found via the following link: http://goo.gl/4zKaWN.

The Northern Housing Consortium have been engaging closely with members around the theme of combating poverty including food poverty, holiday hunger and supporting their tenants around cooking and healthy eating on a budget, all the themes that were covered at our recent Combating Poverty Conference.

The NHC are aware that there is some great work being done by our members, and we would like to support you and your partners further, particularly around measuring and evaluating the impact of the work being done on the ground if your organisation is intending to submit a proposal please do let us know as we’d like to be able to support NHC members through this process.

For further details please contact Satty Rai, Policy Services Manager, satty.rai@northern-consortium.org.uk.

Credit unions at 50: call for evidence

The Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Andrea Leadsom has launched a call for evidence about the future of Credit Unions. The review seeks to explore:

  • what is the credit union movement’s vision for their sector, and how can the government help them achieve it?
  • what more can the private sector and wider society do to support credit unions?

The NHC will respond to the Call for Evidence and we would love to hear from members (in conjunction with local Credit Unions if appropriate) to enable us to provide a strong Northern viewpoint into this debate.

The Call for Evidence closes on the 1st September 2014 so please send through any evidence to Charlotte.Harrison@northern-consortium.org.uk by August 25th 2014. More details can be found here.

NHC research services

The Northern Housing Consortium has a long standing track record in undertaking research for government and our members. We have expertise across a range of quantitative and qualitative methodologies and experience in shaping research commissions that provide housing market analysis, customer insight and satisfaction, community based research and providing strategic support to key business functions.

If you would like to hear more about NHC research services and how we can help you, please do contact Barry.Turnbull@northern-consortium.org.uk.

‘Treat housing as essential economic infrastructure’ says report

Housing is so important to the economy, it should be treated like key economic infrastructure like transport, energy, and skills, according to a new report supported by the Northern Housing Consortium and two of our members.

IPPR North’s latest report ‘Home Economics: The Role of Housing in Rebalancing the Ecomomy’ was launched to a packed event at Thirteen Group’s Middlesbrough offices last week, chaired by NHC Chief Executive Jo Boaden. Shadow Planning Minister Roberta Blackman-Woods MP spoke at the event and endorsed many of the report’s ideas.

The report – supported by the Northern Housing Consortium, Thirteen Group, and Yorkshire Housing – highlights four main problematic areas, and makes recommendations to address each:

  1. Problems with planning and coordination where local planning departments lack the capacity and scope necessary to address the more strategic needs of functional economic areas.
  2. Problems with housing finance where current policies favour those areas with high housing demand and inhibit public investment where the residential offer could be critical in attracting inward investment and skills.
  3. Problems with land supply in key cities and places where there is scope for rapid economic growth.
  4. Problems with regenerating housing and neighbourhoods where there is low demand and weak connectivity to the local labour market.

Many of the recommended measures focus on giving increased powers and responsibilities to subnational bodies, such as local and combined authorities and local enterprise partnerships (LEPs) to enable and encourage strategic planning and targeted action at the local and regional levels.

For more information on the Consortium’s economy and enterprise work, contact us on 0191 566 1000 or email enquiries@northern-consortium.org.uk.

Growth Deals: NHC member briefing published

On Monday 7th July 2014 the Government announced the first Local Growth Deals between itself and the 39 English Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs), including the 11 northern LEPs. This round of Growth Deals distributed funds from the first £2bn single Local Growth Fund for 2015/16 and also made a number of longer-term commitments.

The total of the headline figures attributed to the 11 Northern Growth Deals is £2.573bn. This includes 2015/16 commitments, new funding for 2016-21, and indicative/provisional funds for 2016 onwards. Of this £2.573bn:

  • £358.5m (13.9%) is new funding for 2015/16, announced through the Growth Deals
  • £892.2m (34.7%) is new funding for 2016-21
  • A further £453.3m (17.6%) is indicative or provisional funding for 2016 onwards
  • £870.9m (33.8%) is funding which has been previously announced

Outputs delivered by the Growth Deals have been expressed in terms of jobs and homes. Across the North, these Growth Deals are predicted to provide at least 61,000 jobs and 30,900 homes by 2021.

This briefing for Northern Housing Consortium members answers your questions on the Local Growth Fund and Local Growth Deals, takes a look at the overall picture for the North and summarises each of the 11 Northern deals, focussing on the housing impacts of each one.