Crisis aid scheme is a patchwork, new research finds

The abolition of a national system of crisis loans and community care grants has left a patchwork of emergency help offered by local services and charities, research by Urban Pollinators has found. When people are offered assistance, the help is often faster and more responsive to the needs of people in crisis than in the […]

How to create community assets

  Since 1992, several hundred homes in a corner of west London have been the standard-bearers of a new form of community control. Previously owned by Westminster Council, they were transferred to a resident-controlled housing association, Walterton and Elgin Community Homes, under the 1988 ‘tenants’ choice’ legislation. Walterton and Elgin Community Homes (WECH) arose from […]

Social value starts with the way we think

Would you ask a convicted armed robber to help you move house? Of course not. Yet a social enterprise in Manchester has been getting some of the city’s most prolific offenders to do just that. Trafford Housing Trust’s CleanStart project looks after empty properties and prepares them for new tenants. It also does removals. More than 200 […]

Inspiration of the week: the Redundant Public Servant

I spend a lot of time working with and talking to public servants, and people in private companies and voluntary organisations who work for the public on contract. So it’s worth taking a moment to praise someone who has done more, in my view, to raise the profile of public service than many a chief […]

A risk we have to take

Few people still seriously believe a wave of new social enterprises and co-ops will step into the many breaches left as spending cuts take effect across the public sector. But when the dust from the current round of budget-setting has settled there will be an unprecedented opportunity to consider how to achieve the best we […]