WDH’s Foundation Grant SchemeEmployment/Training | Grant-making
What is the project?
WDH’s Foundation Grant Scheme improves employment opportunities by awarding grants to fund training, equipment, identification, transport and childcare. Popular options include support for careers in construction, haulage, beauty therapy, health and safety, and security.
Grant recipients receive up to £1,500. Courses can also be part-funded with partner organisations. Applications for requests of up to £250 can be fast-tracked if an applicant needs the award to take up an offer of work immediately.
The scheme supports WDH’s strategic aims of supporting tenants and communities to achieve their aspirations and ambitions; and ensuring a highly skilled, capable and resilient workforce.
Who is the project targeted at?
Anyone living in one of WDH’s properties over the age of 16 who meets the scheme criteria can apply. The scheme is accessibly advertised through the WDH website, JobCentre Plus, local community groups, radio advertisements and social media.
The grant is also advertised by WDH’s community employment advisors (CEAs). The CEAs support applicants with searching for jobs, e-mail and online applications, how to write a CV or cover letter, interview skills and tips, and help to find the right training course or volunteer opportunity. To date, the CEAs have helped more than 4,500 people, referring over 2,000 to appropriate training and supporting over 1,400 into employment.
Why did the project come about?
The scheme began as an ad hoc project to support a limited number of tenants to improve employment opportunities.
How was this project implemented?
Following a pilot, the scheme has gone from strength to strength since launching in 2014. The grant is promoted online and via local networks, and also on the radio. Grant applications are checked for eligibility by the team at WDH, and grants are awarded by a tenant panel.
How was this project funded?
The project is funded by monies secured through the community benefit clause within in WDH’s contract with Wolseley Integrated Services (WIS).The grant scheme is managed by WDH and delivered in partnership with local course providers.
Outcomes so far
Our Foundation Grant Scheme was established in 2014 and has improved employment opportunities for more than 200 tenants.
In 2020/2021, the scheme ran over four windows with 97 applicants in WDH’s neighbourhoods benefitting from the scheme. A total of £66,076.55 in funding was awarded.
A more detailed evaluation of the social return on investment provided by the grant is being undertaken, and additional funding to increase support offered by the grant is being explored.
Claire Vinent, Customer Insight Manager, WDH