VIVID Plus, the charitable arm of housing association VIVID, is marking a successful first year after investing £2million in helping improve individual and community prosperity and tackling hotspots of deprivation.
This comes at a time when household income is under huge financial pressure, so VIVID Plus has focussed on providing vital tenancy sustainment services, including positive financial outcomes, and supporting local initiatives to make a real difference in its communities.
The charitable arm launched in February 2021 pledging to invest a total of £21million over the first 5 years.
Jonathan Cowie, Chief Operating Officer said, “We launched VIVID Plus to help our customers and communities thrive, so it's important to us that we can demonstrate how our support makes a positive impact. We've used our first year as an opportunity to trial ways of working to see how we can make the greatest difference and undertake in-depth research across our operating area at postcode level to identify 8 hotspots to target first.
“Since launching VIVID Plus what’s struck me most is the number of organisations out there already doing some great work our communities. These organisations need support from larger businesses to enable them to continue to make a positive impact and broaden their impact. And that’s where we’ve been able to make a difference. Although it’s still early days we’re pleased with some of the outcomes achieved already.”
Some notable achievements over the last year include:
Supporting Basingstoke Foodbank to provide 94 tonnes of food feeding over 7,600 people during the pandemic
Helping customers claim £5million of unclaimed benefits/income they were entitled to
Partnering with homeless support charity Two Saints to support its Housing First service to provide homes to people who would otherwise be rough sleeping.
Funding training courses for 43 young people who weren’t in education or employment and were involved in anti-social behaviour to learn new skills. Through Eastleigh Borough Council’s Changing Direction for Future Success project, this has enabled 16 young people to enrol in full time education or employment
The year ahead for VIVID Plus looks exciting as it explores working with a further 15 organisations focusing on addressing local priorities including health, employment and wellbeing to make a real difference in its communities.