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We're delighted to announce that Phoenix is celebrating a double win in a national housing awards scheme, and has scooped a top prize for the second year in a row.
Phoenix was awarded the ‘Community Achievement’ prize at the 24housing Awards for our Phoenix Community Chest. This awards grants of up to £100,000 each year to groups and projects that will benefit people living in the Bellingham, Downham and Whitefoot areas of Lewisham, with funding allocated based on tenants’ votes. In 2014, Phoenix won the same award for their landmark community hub, The Green Man, which has welcomed more than 45,000 visitors since opening in November 2013.
The Chest was established in 2013 after residents voted in favour of the new fund. Our residents are involved at every stage and help to set local funding priorities, have the opportunity to be involved in shortlisting and all have the chance to vote for their favoured projects at an annual Community Chest event. Residents are also eligible to bid for a share of the funds for their own projects.
To date, £300,000 has been awarded from the fund and over 3,000 local people have benefitted from the projects, which range from children’s play schemes to community gardening initiatives. Initial assessments show an estimated return of between £7 and £119 per £1 invested, depending on the type of project.
We also took home the prize for ‘Communications Team of the Year’, beating off competition from seven other shortlisted organisations. The judges praised our work to raise the profile of our resident-led community gateway model, and the contributions of our resident communications group.
Jim Ripley, Phoenix Chief Executive said: “We are very proud to receive these awards and to be able to share them with our residents. As one of the smallest and newest organisations shortlisted in these categories, our success really demonstrates the strength of our resident-led model.
“We are particularly delighted to be awarded the Community Achievement prize for the second year in a row and I’d like to thank all of our residents for getting behind the Community Chest and using their vote to award funding to local projects.
“The scheme is unique because all of the power sits firmly with our residents. We truly believe that they are the experts on what our local area needs and the projects that they have chosen to fund are already making a positive difference to people’s lives and opportunities in our area.”
The next round of funding will be awarded in June 2016 and applications will open in early 2016. Organisations and individuals can register their interest in the fund by contacting us.