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Unity Employment team shortlisted for Housing Heroes Award

A small team dedicated to supporting housing association tenants in Leeds and Kirklees to enter employment has been shortlisted for a national award.

Established in 2011, Unity Employment Services (UES) is a pivotal part of BME housing association Unity Homes and Enterprise.

Their mission is to support unemployed people to find jobs, set up a business, become self-employed, access training and education opportunities or work as a community volunteer Team of the Year in the Housing Heroes Awards 2024..

Their achievements in the last financial year have led to them being shortlisted for Team of the Year in the Housing Heroes Awards 2024.

Over that period, UES helped 198 people to find jobs, 256 people to improve their skills and employability through training and 15 people to enter voluntary work. Of these, 137 were classified as facing secondary or tertiary barriers to career progression.

Wayne Noteman, Unity Homes and Enterprise Regeneration Director, said: “Being shortlisted for a Housing Heroes Award is a remarkable achievement but absolutely deserved.

“Using a Social Value calculator with an annual investment of circa £60,000, the team generated £2,812,785 of value in the last financial year and approximately £17.4 million since UES was created. This represents phenomenally good value for money in comparison with others, including most if not all housing associations many times our size.

“The team’s achievements are even more impressive given the small geographical area in which they operate relative to larger associations.

“I am delighted that their incredible efforts have caught the attention of the judges.”

Cedric Boston, Unity Homes and Enterprise Chief Executive, said: “The team has particular expertise in helping people overcome often difficult barriers to become job and training ready. This includes providing one-to-one mentoring to build self-confidence, resilience and motivation.

“They are also wonderfully effective at collaborating with partners including Job Centre Plus, Citizens Advice and Learning Partnerships to deliver regular training sessions in numerous areas including ESOL, digital inclusion, job clubs and employability.

“They have had outstanding success in transforming life chances for so many individuals and families. We are immensely proud of them.”

The Housing Heroes Awards ceremony will be held in Manchester on Monday 24 June.

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