RODDONS Housing Association, part of Circle Housing Group, has secured nearly £1m of funding from the Big Lottery Fund.
The successful bid will see Roddons and a range of partners deliver innovative money advice and literacy work across the Fenlands over five years.
The Making Money Count project will be delivered by Roddons together with key partners; Fenland District Council, the Citizens Advice Bureau, Cambridge Housing Society and Barclays Bank.
The five year project aims to help Roddons residents and those of other housing associations in Fenland by creating new services to build skills and confidence in managing their money. The bid is targeted at:
• Helping new tenants to develop the skills to deal with the financial challenges of managing their tenancies
• Supporting tenants moving in and out of work to manage their household income and expenditure, and respond to changes in their employment.
The money has been awarded as part of the Big Lottery Fund’s Improving Financial Confidence programme which will help tenants in Norwich, Great Yarmouth and Fenland become more financially aware, more confident in money management and better able to access financial products and services such as a basic bank account.
Mark Lowthian, Assistant Director of Neighbourhoods at Roddons, said: “This exciting project will make a significant difference for many residents in Fenland over the next 5 years.
“We are very keen to help social housing residents gain the knowledge and confidence to avoid getting into debt and to manage their money and household budget effectively. We know this to be a big issue and worry, particularly for new tenants when they are facing the challenge and financial burden of setting up a new home, and for those in and out of work.
“Working together with partners and through resident volunteers in the community we aim to improve the financial confidence and life chances of those residents most affected by the economic downturn and welfare reforms.”
The partnership will deliver an integrated package of services through both direct support and through residents volunteering to help others in their community as “Money Mates” and “Money Mentors”. A community bus will bring services to all hamlets, villages and the market towns in the Fens offering confidential advice and support on money matters as well as the offer loan of a laptop and training to help residents get on line.
Residents and stakeholders from partner organisations have all been involved in designing the innovative range of services included in the bid, which will provide both a personalised and tailored approach which is accessible for residents in Fenland.
The Making Money Count project will be launched in January 2013.