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SBS is currently delivering an energy efficiency retrofit scheme in the Wyke district of Bradford on behalf of the social housing provider Incommunities Limited. The work is being delivered under the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (Wave 1). It entails fitting new windows and doors, removing incorrectly installed external wall insulation (EWI) and replacing it with a new EWI system on 35 properties.

On a second, related scheme, also based in Wyke, we will be undertaking similar works on 72 properties, while simultaneously installing new replacement roofs.

Work is progressing well but, as on any project we deliver, we have also sought to create added value for the local community. One of the ways that we aim to do this is by creating employment opportunities for local residents.

In October, we got that chance. One of the local residents, Joseph Clifford, had 9 years of professional roofing experience but he was looking for work when our project began. Being aware of our commitment to social value, our subcontractor AK Externals encouraged him to speak with their owner and manager Matthew Kelly to see whether there might be any suitable opportunities. As a result of those discussions, Joseph secured a new full-time post with the company and he is now working on site, helping to improve the community in which he lives.

“Things have worked out really well,” said Joseph. “I’ve settled in quickly and joined a really friendly team. I’m also now developing a new skill set with the EWI and rendering work.”

In the same month, site staff heard the sad news that the partner of one of the local residents had passed away, so the team discussed what they could do as a gesture of support for the surviving resident and her children. Our resident liaison officer noted that the children attended a cub/scout group hosted by the local church, so the team agreed to organise a donation to support the club’s uniform bank. The bank helps to provide uniforms for children whose families may not be able to afford them. SBS staff made the £200 donation on 20 October 2022.

SBS began its work with Incommunities in August 2022 and the scheme is due for completion in March 2023.

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