About Riverside FoundationBack to top
Our charity Riverside Foundation exists to provide practical support to help people overcome obstacles for a better quality of life.
The Foundation supports a diverse range of projects aimed at promoting community action and cohesion, and breaking the cycle of poverty in our neighbourhoods.
The Riverside Foundation focuses on three key areas of:
- Employment and training opportunities: Helping people to fulfil their potential by supporting their academic and professional goals through advice, training and volunteering opportunities.
- Neighbourhood and environment: Ensuring Riverside communities remain sustainable, inclusive and safe places for people to live, work and play, and which inspire a sense of neighbourhood pride and togetherness.
- Supporting vulnerable people: Giving the most vulnerable people in Riverside communities and schemes the opportunity to improve their health, wellbeing and inclusion, and to maintain a safe and stable home.
Key Facts 2018/19
Employment & Training advice and guidance – We’ve helped 675 people develop their employment skills and 282 people into employment.
Through our Ladders of Aspiration funding we’ve helped 63 customers to gain qualifications in only 6 months of operating.
Through our Money advice service we’ve had 1,857 referrals and helped increase income for customers by £4,321,311.
Our Helping hand hardship fund has assisted 120 customer to buy new clothes or pay for travel cost to job interviews. While a further 25 customers benefited by getting essential furniture like a bed, fridge or sofa. We’ve also helped 132 customers to get emergency energy top ups.
Affordable warmth advisors have helped 796 customers to save over £300K on energy bills.* We’ve helped support 91 vulnerable customers to live independently and received support for their needs through our Intensive Intervention scheme.
What we doBack to top
Our current projects include:
Employment and Training
We know that employment can be a route out of poverty, and that having something to do improves wellbeing. The service supports customers who have lost their job, or are looking to increase their hours or job security. It also works with people who have never had a job.
Officers work one-to-one with people, helping them to identify what kind of job they would like, and to develop the confidence, skills and resources to help them gain employment. This could include developing their CV, helping with job searches, interview skills etc. The service also provides Job Clubs for local communities, with IT equipment to assist in job-searches, and builds strong links with local employers.
In April 2019, the service expanded to support people into volunteering and training, in addition to employment. This has enabled it to support people who may be further from employment, and has meant that we can expand the service to work with vulnerable customer within our Care and Support services.
Visit our Employment and Training Advice pages to find out more.
Ladders of Aspiration
Developed in October 2018 as part of Riverside’s 90th Birthday celebrations. It is a grants programme for Riverside customers (or their children) to enable them to pursue their academic or professional goals.
So far the programme has supported 138 customers. 67% of customers moved into employment six months after completion of training, while total of 97% of customer completed the training courses.
Interim findings suggest that it has made a valuable contribution to helping people gain employment, which is more sustainable and aligned to their ambitions.
With the continuing reductions in Welfare Benefits, migration of claimants onto Universal Credit, increasing use of ‘sanctions’ to penalise claimants, and increasingly complex process to claim all and particularly disability benefits, it has never been more vital to provide support in claiming welfare benefits.
The service supports customers on their benefit entitlement, help them to apply for funding, attend assessments and review any benefits if required. Visit our Money Advice pages to find out more.
The affordable warmth service helps our customers facing fuel poverty, helping them to save money by switching supplies to a cheaper tariff or advising them to make changes within the home that would save them money and help supports the reduction of carbon emissions.
Read more about saving money on your energy bills here.
The Helping Hands fund enables us to support vulnerable households with one off assistance: for example: replacing a cooker; providing fuel top up vouchers; interview clothing and other items.
With many of Riverside customers moving in and out of insecure and low paid work, including zero hours contracts, and with the reducing support available from local authorities and charities, this fund can help to prevent and alleviate the immediate crisis, enabling officers to work with the customer to help them improve their circumstances.
The service provides intensive support to vulnerable households, who are at risk of losing their homes.
Support is personalised to the individual needs of the household, and involves developing a holistic understanding of the person’s needs, then developing an action plan with them. Officers also have local knowledge of external specialist support, and can make referrals and accompany people to these support agencies, for example, specialist mental health services, and Welfare Benefits advice. The service helps people who may be at risk of becoming homeless, by addressing social and financial challenges that could lead to rent arrears and anti-social behaviour.
The service builds trust with people who otherwise would be hard to engage, providing an invaluable link to Riverside teams, including housing management, rent collection, and gas safety.
The Foundation also supports small community bids, which fit with our aims, and provide an opportunity to deliver further benefits to individuals and communities.
Who we areBack to top
Riverside Foundation: Registered charity number 513727