Five year job and training pledges from The Aspire Group

All customers of Aspire Housing aged 19 to 25 will be offered training and a work placement, under a new plan.

The pledge has been made by housing association Aspire Housing, which has 9,000 homes in Staffordshire and Cheshire.

The training will be provided through Aspire Housing’s sister company PM Training, which is Staffordshire’s top provider of apprenticeships for 16- 18-year-olds.

Under the “Aspire to Work” plan customers aged 19 to 25 would be offered a traineeship, which consists of training and a work placement, through the network of 900 companies who take apprentices from PM Training.

The plan to help young people into work is one of dozens of commitments made in a five year strategic plan for Aspire Housing. Other pledges are:

• To build or acquire 500 new homes, of which 200 would be for “shared ownership” sale

• To provide great customer service, leading to increased customer satisfaction

• To improve the energy efficiency of homes

Five year plans have also been agreed for The Aspire Group and for its social enterprise arm, Enterprising Futures, which includes PM Training, Furniture Mine and Social Enterprise West Midlands.

Other commitments include:

• Growing the turnover of Enterprising Futures to £10m a year

• Expanding the range of apprenticeships offered through PM Training

• Provide services from PM Training such as gardening and landscaping to a greater number of clients

• Increasing the volume of furniture collected and provided to people in need through Furniture Mine

Sinéad Butters, chief executive of the Aspire Group, said: “We are social regeneration business. We are here not only to provide housing but to improve people’s lives.

“We have developed a specialism in helping 16 to 18-year-olds into work but we also provide support to adults to get work and training.

“So through the skills we have and using funding we will bid for we want to help more of our young housing customers into work.”

Mrs Butters added: “Our new strategy is ambitious. We want to look back in five years time and see an unequivocal improvement in our homes, neighbourhoods and the quality of life of the people that live there.”

The Aspire Group strategy 2014-19 is published here:

The Aspire Housing strategic plan 2014-19 is published here:

The Enterprising Future strategy 2014-19 is published here: