Hillcrest has distributed £238,519 of funding in the past twelve months to help set up services and projects that benefit people and communities across Scotland.
The organisation’s Gift Aid initiative has supported 148 projects and activities with grant funding of £939,432 since the scheme launched in 2013.
Hillcrest’s chief executive Angela Linton commented: “Since its launch seven years ago our Gift Aid initiative has transformed the quality of life for people facing severe and multiple disadvantages. With close to £1M of funds being awarded over the years, many of the services started by Gift Aid are now core functions in the organisation.”
Hillcrest’s fundraising and grants officer Clare McNally explained: “Gift Aid is a process where profits generated by the commercial arms of the organisation are invested back into our charitable companies, Hillcrest Futures and Hillcrest Homes.
“Funds are available for all staff to apply for with priority given to projects that directly benefit our service users, tenants and customers. We encourage staff to involve our stakeholders in the process by drawing on their ideas to ensure the projects we deliver meet their individual needs.”
Over the last year 39 projects were funded including Hillcrest Futures’ Angus Outreach service for people with additional needs, which used funds to lease a car for the next three years. The car has enabled support workers to take service users to educational and social activities they would otherwise not have access to, which greatly enhances their lives and improves their wellbeing.
Another project that has benefitted from funds is Hillcrest’s Energy Advice Team (HEAT) which has used the money to hire an energy advisor to undertake community engagement in areas where Hillcrest has stock, such as delivering educational sessions in local schools where the team can reach families they may not otherwise engage with.
Angela Linton concluded that: “Going forward in order to grow the scheme we are replacing it with the Hillcrest Foundation, which will ultimately offer the opportunity to not only support internal activities, but it will also be open to external initiatives to benefit the wider community. We would hope to be in a position to launch this in 2021.”
Hillcrest Housing Association was established in 1967 and is one of Scotland’s largest Housing Associations. They provide housing and support in Dundee, Edinburgh, Angus, Perthshire and Fife, with over 5500 good quality, well maintained homes at affordable rents. In each area of operation there are local offices with housing advice teams who can provide an immediate response to the customers.