The Restore Trust: Bristol.
Training and Employment Through
The Renovation Of Empty Property
The Restore Trust was formed in January 2010 as not-for-profit company (Ltd by guarantee). It has a sympathetic and supportive relationship with Avon and Somerset Probation Trust but importantly has its own clear governance arrangements and autonomous board. The Trust was formed to provide skills, training and jobs to offenders in the Bristol area.
In March 2010 the Restore Trust won significant Department of Work and Pensions funding, through the Future Jobs Fund. The aim to deliver 100 paid jobs for the long-term unemployed and ex offenders over a period of 18 months.
Working in partnership with Bristol City Council our Construction Skills Trainees worked on renovating void Local Authority housing in deprived areas that have been left in a poor state of repair.
In this time we renovated 8 Local Authority voids and importantly 3 community facilities. After the 6-month employment with us we moved 75% into full time employment and reduced re offending by 42%.
Moving forward we have entered into a partnership with Bristol Together a community interest company that raises ethical finance through a bond issue launched by Triodos bank. Bristol Together purchases run down property in the Bristol area and then contracts with the Restore Trust to carry out the renovations on the understanding that we continue to employ ex offenders. From October 2011 to date we have employed 6 ex offenders, 4 of whom can be considered high risk. We have developed 2 properties to a high specification and have begun work on a third.
In addition we have, since forming, run bespoke training courses for ex offenders, providing them with an industry led qualification – the Construction Skills Certification Scheme Card. We have refined this qualification with an embedded Level 1 NOCN (Open College Network) certificate in Employability, Customer Service and Retail and Teamwork. We have agreed with Weston College to deliver 600 qualifications to ex offenders in the next academic year. Importantly we are moving 37% of course attendees into full time work, occasionally employing ourselves.
This ratio suggests that next year we will be able to move at least 222 ex offenders into full time employment having completed one of our bespoke courses.
We have every intention of ramping up delivery and as a result opportunity in the next financial year, offering further direct employment and training opportunities to ex offenders.
Further information can be found at www.therestoretrust.org.
Adam McMeechan Director 01179 302 565