Creating social value policy
We've recently reviewed our Creating social value policy which sets out our approach to social value and describes our core priorities for the period 2016/21. This is our second social value policy.
In order to ensure that our work is both focused and achievable, our updated social value policy focuses on the following core priorities;
- promote employment and economic sustainability – tackle unemployment and facilitate the development of skills
- raise the living standards of local residents – working towards living wage, maximising employee access to entitlements such as childcare and encourage suppliers to source labour from within Bolton and its surrounding areas
- promote participation and citizen engagement – encourage resident participation and promote active citizenship
- build the capacity and sustainability of the VCSE (voluntary, community and social enterprise) sector – practical support for local voluntary and community groups
- promote equity and fairness – target effort towards those in the greatest need or facing the greatest disadvantage and tackle deprivation across the borough and
- promote environmental sustainability – reduce wastage, limit energy consumption and procure materials from sustainable sources.
These core priorities are the same as the AGMA social value objectives as defined within the GMCA Social Value Strategy from November 2014, but have been updated to reflect the locality which we work. For a copy of the AGMA Greater Manchester Strategy, please click here.
Our environmental strategy
At Bolton at Home, we recognise the responsibility we have to protect our environment for ourselves and future generations. Like any other business we make choices that have both positive and negative impacts on the environment, this Environmental Sustainability Strategy sets out our approach to managing this impact.
Building on the work we have done through our 20x16 Plan, the current strategy must operate in a substantially different financial climate. Recent governmental policy changes have driven us to refocus our business plan. This is to ensure a financially robust operating model for the future within a set of new financial constraints. Our Environmental Sustainability Strategy has been similarly focussed to ensure that it is consistent with our current Business Plan and will contribute towards delivering against organisational priorities.
The associated Environmental Strategy Theme Plan sets out areas of work and initiative with, wherever possible, potential financial and CO2 savings identified.
We have made good progress in terms of starting to monitor and improve its environmental performance since the introduction of the 20x16 Plan, which had a headline objective of reducing emissions by 20% by 2016. Highlights under this plan include:
- SHIFT assessments – index of sustainability for housing associations, We've moved from a Bronze rating in 2012 to Silver in 2014, which has been maintained at last assessment (2016).
- Keep Warm for Less – comprehensive initiative to support our customers with energy saving advice.
- Carbon Literacy – over 100 front-line staff trained to the Carbon Literacy standard.
- Super Greens – well established and active environmental champion scheme promoting sustainable behaviour internally within the organisation.
- Sustainable Travel – Staff cycling and car-share initiatives established with good take-up.
- Retrofit – External funding accessed for retrofit works such as Leicester Street Estate.
- Sustainable Procurement – new procurement toolkit introduced which includes criteria and guidance on environmental sustainability.
- Overall emissions reductions – 22% emission reduction achieved compared to 2011 baseline.
- Partnership with Emmaus (local furniture recycling charity) - an initiative to re-use unwanted items left in our properties and reduce waste to landfill.
- Office consolidation – We now operate from modern, more energy efficient buildings, reducing CO2 emissions and energy costs.