Mission: To make South Liverpool the place to be. Vision: To turn one of the UK’s most deprived neighbourhoods into paradise!
CHRIS HALLIDAY DIDN’T think he’d be running a shop two days a week. Yet the senior income enforcement officer at SLH Group is juggling onions and jars to run a means-tested scheme so the housing association’s tenants can get a £15 basket of shopping for £2.50.
Halliday and his team had the idea to help residents in its 3,700 south Liverpool homes. “As a socially conscious landlord, when they say it’s rent or food, we listen,” he says.
The small organisation also listens to its 95 employees, who have voted SLH Group top of this list for four years. The group’s positive scores are all above 76%, never below third, and it has 44 top results.
At the Liverpool head office, Julie Fadden, chief executive for 11 years, takes a hands-on approach. Staff don’t doubt her leadership qualities (90%).
This year, as president of the Chartered Institute of Housing, Fadden is supporting homeless charity Crisis. Every Monday night, she takes a team of staff to join the Paper Cup Project helping the homeless in Liverpool. “We have taken 20 people off the streets in five months,” she says. “I can’t have people standing in the rain when I’ve got properties empty.”
Government rule changes led to several redundancies in 2016 but no dent in morale. People still see opportunities to learn and grow (76%): Halliday was supported to take a housing degree.
The office has a new “living room” with table tennis, darts and crafts to promote Wellbeing (87%). Staff can spend £200 on a sports club membership — or even try skydiving. Eddie Allen, digital and engagement officer, helped a graffiti artist decorate the community shop last year. He says: “There are lots of great ideas for community projects, testament to the fact that we generally get listened to. That’s exciting.”
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