'Real wage' jobs organisation receives Queen's Award
- Credit: David Hare
A campaigning organisation that fights for local authorities to use their purchasing powers to help the homeless and disadvantaged in the East End has been given a Queen’s Award.
Aspire Community Works, set up in Bethnal Green’s Minerva community centre, is one of 205 UK organisations receiving one of the Queen's Awards for Enterprise.
The organisation reaches out to people outside the labour market with training and jobs with “real living wages”.
Aspire provides estate management services to local authorities, housing associations and charities and competes with the private sector through public contracts.
“We are challenging discrimination and identifying the root causes of disadvantage,” Aspire’s director Katharine Sutton told the East London Advertiser.
You may also want to watch:
"Treating people decently with respect promotes social mobility.”
Aspire launched a Better For Us campaign in 2020 for “good public procurement” in awarding maintenance contracts and published a guide last month on how public bodies can use their purchasing power as "a force for the community".
- 1 'Stop building more towers,' MP at protest after New Providence Wharf fire
- 2 Racist vandalism keyed on cars parked in street on Isle of Dogs
- 3 Leyton Orient have announced their retained list as they begin rebuild
- 4 Tower Hamlets votes to keep directly-elected mayoral post
- 5 'Halt to development draining services' after win for neighbourhood plan
- 6 Masks scrapped 'as early as next month' and over 35s jabs 'soon'
- 7 Blaze at Canary Wharf tower block with cladding issue
- 8 Unmesh Desai on his priorities after winning City and East election
- 9 MP's fury at four-year delay removing Grenfell-type cladding from block
- 10 Isle of Dogs The Space theatre to open up after lockdown
This helps shape local markets to the needs of people, strengthening public services and promoting inclusive growth, it said.
The promoting opportunity through social mobility category of the Queen’s Award is a prestigious accolade in the UK for charities and community organisations like Aspire, which has been named for its Better For Us programme.
Katharine added: “This award is down to the resilience of our employees who have done the best every day to make our community business a success.”
The organisation is now in its 11th year, but transformed into a community business in 2015 with a sustainable “real living wages” policy to help anyone who has been left disadvantaged in the jobs market.
Aspire is one of two east London community organisations receiving the Queen's Award for social mobility; Breaking Barriers, a refugee charity that runs sessions in Bethnal Green's Sundial day centre, was also given the accolade.
Breaking Barriers was set up in Shoreditch in 2015 to help asylum-seekers integrate through education, training and finding work in the same way Aspire Community Works helps those in the established community facing the same disadvantages.