Thank You Northwards
Will say something about elections later in the week, but want to start with another good news story from a visit I made last week.
Toddled off to visit Yes Manchester on Briscoe Lane in Newton Heath, a facility run by Northwards Housing but used by a whole range of agencies. Its principle purpose is to help people find work, or to develop the skills for work, and in a short period of time it's been remarkably successful. It's not the first of its kind in the city, the Works in Moss Side and Ardwick probably hold that distinction, but after less than a years existence, it is already looking at expanding into Cheetwood and Plant Hill, because it works, getting people into training and into employment. Average daily attendees are creeping up to sixty pd and its not just Northwards tenants.
Worklessness is not the only problem faced by some of the city's neighbourhoods, but it is the single biggest factor adversely effecting quality of life for thousands of residents and it is clear to me that neighbourhood based projects like this have a major role to play in tackling it. A more eloquent description comes though from centre user Adrian Burke in the form of a poem.
" There's a place just down the road from me,
Where you can do a job search, or complete a CV,
They give helpful advice and also run courses,
They help people find work, using all their resources.
The staff there are willing to go the extra mile,
Greeting us customers with a friendly smile,
Unlike the job centre they'll give you their time,
Hence I didn't mind creating this rhyme.
The staff don't judge you by previous deeds,
They evaluate you by your needs,
They try to help people whose lives are a mess,
So thank you Northwards and the staff at Yes ".