Along with the National Housing Federation, business partners and other housing associations across the country, we are supporting the Homes at the Heart campaign to show the different benefits on people’s lives that come with having a comfortable and safe home to call their own. There are six different parts to the campaign that we are showcasing in August and September.
Below are the campaign elements we are sharing to highlight our own impact and mission when it comes to housing in North Devon. We’ll continue to update this article as the week’s move forward.
Homes at the Heart of a Stronger Economy
Week one is all about promoting a strong local economy. We are hugely passionate about this one as we have been a community landlord for many years, with a mission to have a team who work for the local communities around our homes promoting jobs, training and local business.
As well as all the work in the communities we do generally, we are also proud of our financial impact on the local economy in terms of our work via Anchorwood Ltd and Taw Wharf. The development side of our business generates profits that we invest back into NDH and therefore into new affordable local housing. As well as this funding benefit, the Anchorwood development has also created hundreds of new jobs in the area, both in construction and in the new retail units developed on site.
Homes at the Heart of Making Ends Meet
This week was aimed to highlight the affordability of housing and the availability of the supply of housing in the county. As well as these very important aspects we also work closely with our customers to make sure their financial situation keeps them in a good place. Our Money Matters Team work together with customers to apply for benefits, set up budgets, work on arrears schedules and even help with difficult situations such as debt management and after bereavements.
In the video below we share a case study of a lady who would have lost her home if our team had not of spotted her situation before the worst happened. The team helped her and her husband to make sure that when her husband passed away she would not be left homeless and in financial difficulty.
Homes at the Heart of Living Well
Homes at the Heart of Living Well supports the industries around housing that play a big part in our lives. We work closely with local health partners such as the local NHS, care providers and many other wellness partners.
The link between health and housing has been apparent for many years, you just need to look back in history at the slums to see that the housing people had, had an affect on the condition of their physical and mental well being. We're working closely with our partners to ensure we don't only provide customers with a safe and warm home to live in but also give them the extra support they may need to leave a better lifestyle.
Our Independent Living Team also goes further for our older people schemes as you can see in this video.
Homes at the Heart of a Greener Country
Homes at the Heart of a Greener Country is all about providing more energy friendly homes and whilst building these new homes not having a huge affect on the planet.
We're currently working on a pilot project with EnergieSprong on a couple of our homes as pilots to see how retrofitting some of our older homes could help with their eco-friendly aspects. So far the project is going extremely well and we're already looking at more projects we can invest in to make more homes energy efficient.
We also work with a number of other housing associations, as Advantage South West, to see what we can do together, to decarbonise our build process across the board.
Homes at the Heart of Settled Futures
Homes at the Heart of Settled Futures makes sure everyone has a home - full stop. We want to reduce the number of people living on the streets, reduce the need for temporary accommodation and ensure everyone has a suitable sized home to live in with their family.
Through out lockdown we've been working with the council to house a number of the homeless community in our empty homes and we're continuing this work by supporting those people to stay in these homes.
We have an ongoing downsizing project underway, where we encourage and support people to move from larger homes to smaller homes once their families have left home to help free up the much-needed larger family homes for those that need them.
Homes at the Heart of Prosperous Communities
Homes at the Heart of Prosperous Communities is about leveling up communities and making sure no one is left behind because of where they live. We have been a community landlord for many years and work hard to ensure our customers not only have a well built and maintained home but also have extra support available to them no matter where they live.
One example of how we do this is by working with partners such as Positive People to provide Digital and Employment training courses for free helping more customers get back into work or just be able to live a little bit easier in a digital world.
We have a team specifically for customer engagement, who work directly with our communities hosting events and focus groups to ensure we get new ideas for how to help our customers.