Looking back at 2013
With 2014 just around the corner, it's a good opportunity to reflect on my highlights of 2013, and to look forward to what next year has in store for Peabody.
What a fantastic year 2013 has been for Peabody – from launching our new website to securing £1.8m funding to continue our hugely successful Activate programme – this year the Peabody team have gone above and beyond to realise our mission of making London a city of opportunity for all by creating good homes, a real sense of purpose and a strong feeling of belonging for Londoners.
A Good Home
This year we completed around 100 new homes; in 2014/15 we will be completing over 1,000 new homes. It has been fantastic watching the growth in our development pipeline, which now contains around 4,000 new homes. In 2014 we will continue to push forward with our plans, and look for further opportunities to develop well-designed affordable homes for Londoners.
Ladder for London: A real sense of purpose
Earlier this year, Peabody teamed up with the Evening Standard on the Ladder for London campaign. The campaign creates apprenticeship opportunities in ‘blue collar’ trades for 16-24 year olds, and was launched by HRH the Duke of York at an event on our Pembury Estate. Since the launch in June, the campaign has achieved considerable success, and now has over 175 committed apprenticeships with a range of companies including Axis, Ardmore and Mace.
In 2014, we want to help more people discover a real sense of purpose through fulfilling employment. Indeed, next year we are aiming to help 1,000 Londoners into employment.
Thamesmead: A strong feeling of belonging
One of the key achievements of 2013 was signing a grouping agreement with Gallions Housing Association. Gallions manage 6,000 properties mainly based in Thamesmead. In 2014 Gallions will officially become part of the Peabody Group. From April 2014, Trust Thamesmead (a Thamesmead based community development agency) will also join the Group, which means strengthening our community activities and extending our offer to people in south east London.
Amongst all the positive activities of 2013 we’ve had some challenges, mostly around welfare reform. We’ve stood up for residents through our public affairs activities, and more practically by providing sound financial advice and helping them into work. We will continue support our residents next year, which will see the introduction of universal credit and a chance to influence policy at the local elections and the formation of party manifestos ahead of the 2015 general election.
2014 promises to be a very exciting year for Peabody. I would like to round off by thanking the Peabody team for their hard work over the last year, and by wishing all of the Peabody team, our residents and our supporters a very happy new year.
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