Latest news at CGA

Helping Our Tenants Back Into Employment!

Community Gateway is thrilled to have helped yet another tenant, Sarah Ayles, back into employment through their More Positive Together programme.

 Sarah, who lives with her 7 year old daughter, told Community Gateway why she decided to turn to the initiative, More Positive Together, after being out of work for almost 10 years.

 “I went to University and got a degree but after falling pregnant and becoming a single parent, I couldn’t afford to work.”

 Sarah told us how whilst being out of work, her confidence began to deteriorate, as she felt she had a lot of barriers to overcome to get back into employment, such as childcare support, transport, a gap in employment and social isolation. Before she knew it, she didn’t know a way out.

 “Deep down, I always wanted to be a vetinary nurse but never had the confidence to go for it, let alone know how to begin applying. Then one day, I heard about the Community Gateway programme that helps people back into employment. I contacted them and have never looked back.” 

After several one to one meetings with her CG mentor, Ve Bennett, the two of them explored how Sarah could overcome her barriers and put steps in place to boost her confidence and social skills.

 Sarah began attending the CG ‘Feel Good Friday’, CG Job Club, and enrolled onto a 10 week Confidence training course, which also allowed her to pass her 1st Aid Course whilst on the project.  

 Sarah gushed about the confidence course and began searching for another opportunity with Ve – this time, to take another step towards her dream career of becoming a vetinary nurse. Fast forward and Sarah is preparing to begin an Apprenticeship at a pet healthcare practice and is looking forward to the future.

 Sarah added:

 “Thank you to Community Gateway and the team on the More Positive Together programme, you’ve truly changed my life.”

North West Air Ambulance

Today Community Gateway proudly presented a cheque for £7,991.63 to North West Air Ambulance Charity to help support the service, which is funded through the generosity of the public’s donations.

Colleagues at Community Gateway get to vote for the charity they’d like to pledge their support to, and this year, decided that NWAA would be the charity of choice, as they teach, treat and transfer patients via helicopter all over the North West.  

Throughout the year, we’ve taken part in a number of exciting activities to raise money for this great cause – here’s just some of the amazing activities that have taken place:

-          Pretty Muddy obstacle course

-          The Great North run

-          Chester Marathon

-          Scaling the ‘Big One’ at Blackpool

-          Bake sales

-          Raffles

-          World Cup Event

-          Ongoing Tuck Shop

Thank you to everyone who has been involved and supported us throughout – your donations, time and effort (not matter how big or small!) has gone towards making a huge difference to people’s lives.

JOIN OUR BOARD

Community Gateway is currently looking for 2 tenants to join our Board. If you’re passionate about your local community and feel you can represent the views of our tenants this exciting opportunity could be for you!

We place tenant involvement at the heart of everything we do and being a Board Member offers you an exciting and challenging role.  If successful, you will be part of making major decisions about a range of issues including: how the homes and neighbourhoods owned by Community Gateway are managed, the building of new homes, and how we can work with our communities to make them great places to live.  

The qualities you will need to make a good Board Member include the ability to:

  • understand the needs and views of our tenants;
  • work in a team and communicate effectively;
  • constructively challenge others’ opinions;
  • analyse information and draw conclusions; 
  • lead and motivate others.

 

We would welcome applications from tenants from minority ethnic backgrounds and from tenants under the age of 40.  Also, if you have experience in any of the following areas we would really like to hear from you:

  • Information Technology/Digital 
  • Communications/Marketing
  • Housing Development/Construction
  • Finance

Joining our Board will benefit you personally in many ways, such as:

  • Giving something back and make a difference to the lives of people within our local communities;
  • gain new knowledge, skills and experience that will be useful in other areas of your life;
  • meet new people and grow in confidence.

This is a voluntary unpaid position, although reasonable travel and subsistence expenses are paid.  Board meetings are held every two months and take place in the evenings, usually on a Thursday between 5-7pm.  If you apply and are successfully appointed, Community Gateway will provide support and training to help you fulfil the role.  

How to apply

If you are interested in applying, further information and application form can be found below.  Your completed application form must be received by no later than 5pm on 14th June 2019.  If you are successfully shortlisted, interviews will take place on the 8th July 2019.

1. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AND ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA.pdf[pdf] 182KB

2. APPLICATION FORM pdf.pdf[pdf] 302KB

2. APPLICATION FORM word.docx [docx] 916KB

3. ROLE DESCRIPTION.pdf [pdf] 172KB

4. BOARD MEMBER QUALITIES FRAMEWORK.pdf [pdf] 216KB

5. BOARD MEMBER CODE OF CONDUCT.pdf [pdf] 194KB

Statement regarding Savick Shops Development

Louise Mattinson, Executive Director of Customers and Communities, says,

“In 2017, in response to feedback from the community, Community Gateway began regenerating the area around Savick shops.  The first phase included the development of 6 new homes on the site of the former Savick pub. 

Phase 2 of the scheme includes the redevelopment of the maisonettes and shops on West Park Avenue.  These properties are outdated, unsightly and are a magnet for anti-social behaviour, resulting in half of the shops being emptywith no new businesses interested in taking up a lease.  

However we listened to the community’s concerns around the impact to residents regarding the loss of the library and shops, and so we worked with local residents, councillors and remaining business owners to develop plans which included a commitment from Community Gateway to build a brand new library and 4 shop units to accommodate the remaining businesses. 

We agreed that we would provide the new units at below market rents to ensure the viability of the businesses for the benefit of the community.

Initially, all the business owners were supportive of these plans, which would have included the provision of high-quality, fully serviced temporary accommodation to allow the businesses to continue to operate whilst the demolition and building works were completed. This would have requiredsignificant investment from Community Gateway, but we believed that the cost was worth it to enable the businesses to continue trading. 

Disappointingly a number of the business owners have since changed their minds, and we now have only one business owner who has confirmed that they would like to enter into a new lease.  Sadly, this means that it is no longer viable for us to continue with our plans to invest in the building of a number of new shops when there is no evidence to suggest that they could be let. 

Whilst we understand the café owners would like to enter into a lease on a new unit, the provision of temporary accommodation is only feasible if a majority of business owners are in agreement.  

It was always our intention to replace the library and shop units and we share the community’s disappointment that there is insufficient interest from business owners to make this possible. However we can confirm that we are continuing with our plans to provide a new purpose built library which will benefit the community for many years to come.” 

Rob's Blog

If any of you have been in to Harbour House, or driven past a Community Gateway van this week, I’m sure you can’t have failed to notice that we have now launched our new Community Gateway logo. 

 

This is the culmination of a considerable amount of effort, hard work and commitment and I would like to take this opportunity to thank all our colleagues and customers who have been involved in the development of our new logo; from those of you who attended Brand Champions meetings, to filling out the online survey, to co-ordinating the launch. 

 

I’m really pleased with the outcome, and just as pleased with the way that tenants and colleagues have worked in partnership throughout the project.

 

We have tried to capture much of the feedback from all of the consultation we’ve carried out with a wide range of stakeholders.  The logo is much fresher in look and feel – with a more modern font and the introduction of vibrant colours whilst retaining the teal from our original logo, and of course, as promised, purple remains the predominant colour.  Most importantly we were looking for the logo to give a sense of what we as a company are about and feel that the central “icon” within the logo does just that.  The icon combines both people and house shapes and conveys a sense of community, teamwork and togetherness, and the fact that we are a community based housing provider. 

 

We have also removed the word “Association” from the main logo as the feedback told us that a) our customers rarely use the word when referring to us, and would instead use Community Gateway, or simply Gateway; and b) it felt too formal, stuffy and old-hat – not reflective of the organisation we are or want to be in the future.  Our business name, registered with Companies House, will always be Community Gateway Association, but our new look logo and brand guidelines will refer to us as Community Gateway.  

 

Once again, a big thank you to everyone who has been involved in this project in one way or another, providing feedback and input and helping to shape the final look and design of our new logo.

 

I’d love to know what you think of the new logo so why not tweet me @CGARobW

Rob

Older articles