Manchester's CleanStart expands to support veterans

Manchester's CleanStart expands to support veterans

Manchester-based social enterprise CleanStart, which works with ex-offenders to help them to secure employment, has announced major expansion plans with a new, larger office, a retail service and move to support military veterans.

Trafford Housing Trust’s scheme, which employs prolific offenders in a range of cleaning, removals and landscaping roles as part of a 12-month rehabilitation program, is to move into a new 33,000 sq ft unit in Trafford Park this summer.

From this new base CleanStart will be able to take on more staff, increase its capacity, and begin to bid for larger private and public sector contracts across Greater Manchester.

CleanStart has also announced it plans to work more closely with military veterans, many of whom can struggle to readjust to civilian life, with a view to helping them to find a job which makes the most of their military experience and skills.

In addition, CleanStart plans to expand its successful retail division which restores and ‘up-cycles’ unwanted furniture and household appliances before selling them on to the public.

Trafford Housing Trust’s Deborah Elgar said: “The need to rehabilitate offenders was a key theme in the recent Queen’s Speech and I’m proud that through our work with CleanStart we have already transformed the lives of many ex-offenders and have benefitted society through cost-savings and a reduction in crime.

“However through our planned expansion we aim to greatly increase the number of people we can support, including military veterans who may be struggling to adjust to civilian life.

“We are also now looking forward to securing more contracts from organisations that want to enjoy the benefits of CleanStart’s cost-effective services while simultaneously contributing something to the wider community.

“This ‘win-win’ double bottom line is what delivering real social value is all about, and it is also at the heart of Trafford Housing Trust’s commitment to supporting the principals of inclusion, equality and social justice.”      

CleanStart is just one example of how Trafford Housing Trust actively supports and promotes the principal of offender rehabilitation through better employment opportunities. It has recently been nominated for the Employing Ex-offenders Award at the enei Awards 2016, which recognises and celebrates the achievements of organisations that have taken a lead in challenging discrimination.

In August 2015 it became the first housing association in the UK to remove the criminal record disclosure box from its job application forms in support of Business in the Community’s (BITC) Ban the Box campaign.

Interested in more stories like this? Sign up for the BQ Breakfast!

Bqlive BQB Sign Up Button LN