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SFHA Poverty and Inequality Conference to discuss supporting communities during Covid

SFHA’s Housing Now, Housing's Future: Poverty and Inequality Conference, taking place on 18 February, will see the Hillcrest Homes and Abertay Housing Association discussing the Scottish Government’s Supporting Communities Fund and how it has helped those most impacted by the pandemic in their communities.  

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By Clare McNally, Hillcrest Homes, and Marjorie Sloan, Abertay Housing Association.  

When we found out about the Scottish Government’s Supporting Communities Fund to support local communities and households through the Covid-19 pandemic, both Hillcrest and Abertay were keen to apply for funding to assist their residents in the Dundee City Council area who were struggling to cope with some of the consequences.  SFHA was a referral partner for this funding as RSLs have been recognised as anchor organisations within their communities. Michael McLaughlin of SFHA and Dundee City Council staff recognised that both organisations would have a greater chance of success if we worked together but still submitted separate applications. There was some duplication in our initial applications, so we worked to split responsibility for specific areas, working to each organisation’s strengths, and increase the impact we would have. 

Due to the vast local grass roots networks that both Hillcrest and Abertay have, and the key knowledge in areas, such as food and fuel poverty, isolation and wellbeing and recovery and outreach, we shared our applications, ensuring strengths were utilised and there was no duplication. 

The funding covered: 

  • energy top ups 

  • early release prisoners 

  • isolation and wellbeing 

  • recovery and outreach 

  • provision of food 

  • supporting those who assist those with mental health issues 

  • assisting those who suffered from domestic violence  

  • new tenant support provision (starter packs).  

When we had agreed how the funding was being spent, we let all other local housing associations know, so they were able to refer people in their communities. 

The joint funding of £175,000, administered across the city, supported over 17,000 individuals and households. We partnered with 125 different local community groups. 

Hillcrest Homes and Abertay Housing Association will discuss the Supporting Communities Fund during SFHA’s Poverty and Inequality Conference on 18 February. The session we will look at the ways in which support has been targeted at those most impacted by the pandemic and the difference it has made in communities.  The session will also discuss lessons learned from SFHA members work within their communities and how this could be built upon. 

Secure your place now:   

18 February: Poverty and Inequality 

25 February: Digital Empowerment and Leadership 

4 March: Our Sector, Our People 

To book your place for this event and to learn more about our Housing Now, Housing’s Future event series, please visit the SFHA Live! section. 



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