By Gareth Swarbrick, Chief Executive of RBH and Greater Manchester Housing Providers lead for social value.
As social housing providers, we know that we can achieve more through partnerships with those who share our values and are working towards similar outcomes.
The 24 members of the Greater Manchester Housing Providers partnership (GMHP) work together across the region to share good practice, learn from each other, and to make sure that our sector – and most importantly our tenants and employees – have a louder collective voice when decisions are made at a Greater Manchester level and a national level.
We do much more than just provide homes – delivering sustainable social, economic, and environmental benefits in our communities is at the heart of what we do. That’s why I’m delighted to lead the GMHP Social Value Group and make sure that as housing providers we continue to deliver social value for our communities.
It is a real privilege to be able to work with our group of social value leads – collectively and individually they demonstrate the drive and passion that we need to create positive change. As a group, we want to lead by example and embed social value across Greater Manchester for the benefit of all our communities.
I’m proud of RBH‘s record of delivering social value – from our Living Wage Foundation accreditation and our membership of the Greater Manchester Good Employment Charter, through our pioneering social value guide for our suppliers, to our ongoing commitment to creating opportunities for local people to work with us.
I know that all 24 members of GMHP could share similar achievements, and our collective impact is clear to see in our annual Social Value Report – over the past 12 months we’ve helped over 6,500 residents towards work, we’ve spent £400m with local businesses, and we’ve supported 35,000 hours of volunteering in our local communities.
I know what great social value delivers for our communities. We create fairly paid work and employees who feel supported. We deliver access to high quality training and employment opportunities for local people across Greater Manchester. We provide support for local businesses and social enterprises, and we make sure that they have the opportunity to bid for work. We provide the support that helps community groups and voluntary organisations to grow and thrive. We improve the protection we provide for our environment and help to mitigate the impact of climate change.
There are some fantastic examples of all these outcomes contained in our Social Value report. This is all at the heart of what we will continue to do – please read and be inspired.