Progress Housing Group has recently been successful in securing external funding to assist in the delivery of a new employment-focused project starting in January 2022.

Inspired by the hugely successful More Positive Together (MPT) project, More Positive Together Steps (MPT Steps) is a partnership project led by Active Lancashire that aims to engage with over 4,000 unemployed job seekers in Lancashire

The project will commence in January 2022 and is being supported by the European Social Fund, with a £4.75m injection of funding to take the project through until December 2023. Progress Housing Group will receive £289,370 in funding to support the project and its work in supporting people to improve their skills and employment prospects.

Like MPT, MPT Steps will provide tailored 'one-to-one' mentoring support to residents living in Lancashire, with the opportunity to engage in a range of activities that will help improve their overall health and wellbeing. A new additional focus for this project is supporting those who may have recently become unemployed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

As of June 2020, according to Northern Powerhouse, sadly, there had been 18,834 redundancies announced across Lancashire. This figure is likely to have increased over the past 12 months, with the true impact yet to be discovered. In addition to this, Lancashire Mind has reported a 116% increase in referrals since January 2021. These figures highlight how the demand for employment support is greater than ever. MPT Steps will play an important role in the region's recovery, as many Lancashire residents' strive to get their lives back on track.

Robert Porter, Services Director (Operations) said: “We are extremely pleased to be able to continue our successful partnership with Active Lancashire and other partners. This funding will be invaluable in supporting our tenants and residents throughout the region in obtaining the much needed support that will enable them to access mentoring support, training and employment."

The project is led by Active Lancashire and delivered by partners including social housing organisations, local authorities, the Prince's Trust and third sector bodies. New partners who will join the project In the new year include Lancashire Women, Positive Action in the Community (PAC) and Inspire Youth Zone.

The support is open to all residents living in a Progress Housing Group property, not just the named tenants.

More information on Progress Futures is available here: www.progressgroup.org.uk/futures