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Thousands empowered through community investment programme

Thousands of Orbit customers have been empowered by employment opportunities, digital support, financial and energy advice and wellbeing programmes, as the group continues towards its 2020 target of investing £30m into its communities.  

In 2015/16 Orbit leveraged £1.36m into its community investment programme through match funding, contractor commitments and in-kind resource. Over 300 customers were helped back into work and over 1,300 undertook employment related training.

Around 6,000 customers were helped through wellbeing programmes to help manage issues of mental health, hoarding and ASB. Orbit also provided around 4,000 customers free money and energy advice from in-house teams and projects.

Sam Scharf, head of community investment, said: “As many in the sector draw back on community investment projects viewing them as additional spend at a time of cuts and uncertainty, we are starting to show that well thought through programmes can have real, tangible business benefits, as well as transform our customers’ lives.

Programmes supporting tenancy sustainment are showing cashable savings of £1.66 for every £1 invested and work within our hoarding service already looks to have saved over £114,000 for HAs this year. Research on employment support shows, moving customers into work hugely reduces risks of evictions and low level arrears.

Orbit’s vision of ‘building communities by improving the social, economic and environmental prospects of people and communities’ is exemplified through our end of year figures. As the UK’s second largest developing housing association, we not only have a development target of delivering 12,000 homes by 2020, but a deep-rooted social purpose and commitment to improving the lives of our customers.”

You can watch a number of videos from customers and staff telling their story of Orbit’s work investing in communities here.

Click here to view our 2015/16 CI achievements