Join us in highlighting the benefits social housing brings to our country

Lucy Grove, 30 July 2020

A little over a month ago, our Homes at the Heart campaign – a partnership between the NHF, Crisis, CIH, the National Federation of ALMOs and the ARCH – burst into life. We had a clear and simple message: that social homes should be at the heart of the country’s recovery from the coronavirus crisis.

The campaign quickly picked up a head of steam, reaching over two million people on social media, attracting national and trade media coverage, and catching the eye of senior politicians and celebrities alike.

Central to this early success was the support of over 50 organisations – from NatWest to Save the Children, Wilmott Dixon to the Carers UK – demonstrating that our Homes at the Heart campaign and everything it stands for is not just a housing sector issue, but about a stronger economy and thriving society. And, of course, the reach of our message was because of staff from housing associations, ALMOs and local authorities amplifying, celebrating and championing the campaign activity.

Now it’s time to build on that success by highlighting the breadth and depth of the benefits social housing brings to our country… and we need your help again. Your social housing successes, and the joy and hope your social homes bring to your residents, needs to be at the centre of the next stage in our campaign – our weeks of action.

How you can get involved in our weeks of action

From 3 August to 2 October we are running six themed weeks of action in the run-up to the Comprehensive Spending Review in the autumn. We start with the theme of Homes at the Heart of a Stronger Economy, which will emphasise how building more homes for social rent drives local and national growth, creates jobs and acts as a springboard for improvements in construction skills.

From Monday 3 August, we want you to get involved and:

  • Share your stories and evidence about how homes can drive a stronger economy on social media using #HomesAtTheHeart. This can be through graphics, photos, videos or quotes – or case studies and blogs on your website.
  • Build local political support by inviting politicians to a virtual or socially distanced visit of your schemes, or encouraging politicians to support the campaign by posting a short video or photo.

To support you with these actions, we’ve updated and expanded our campaign resources – including tools for social media, press and political engagement.

What’s coming up

In subsequent weeks we will shine a light on the many ways a once-in-a-generation investment in social housing would help families, communities and the environment. Find out more about each week.

As we all know, the coronavirus crisis has magnified all the housing issues we have known to be true for such a long time. Far too many people struggle with housing costs. Other people are living in accommodating that is deeply unsuitable and maybe even unsafe for their families or they are struggling to get the support they need to live a happy and fulfilling life. While in lockdown, these problems have become even more acute. Instead of finding sanctuary in their home, people have too often felt trapped and hopeless.

But building and investing in homes for social rent and housing-based support is the answer to all of these issues, and it can also be the answer to how the government gets the country back on track from the pandemic.

Right now political leaders are listening out for solutions to the economic and social challenges we are facing. So we all need to speak loudly and passionately about the importance of everyone having a good home that meets their needs.