People First is in business to deliver services that will improve the lives of as many people as possible. We own and manage high quality housing in Hulme, Manchester and provide community support services across North-West England.
Did you know People First runs drop-in services for support clients across Manchester? You can even come along if you are on our waiting list or used to be one of our support clients in the past.
The drop-ins are held:
- every Tuesday from 10am - 12.30pm at Avenue Library, Blackley
- every Thursday from 10am - 3pm at our offices in Manchester
- every Thursday from 10am - 1pm at Wythenshawe forum.
We offer up to an hour's support with:
- filling out forms
- writing a CV
- using the telephone to contact benefits, landlords, doctors, etc
- reading through letters
- using the internet
The befriending and dementia clients recently had a day out at the Police museum on Newton Street in Manchester.
Before we set off, we had lunch at People First's offices and when everyone was full, we set off to the Police Museum by taxi. We were shown around the very impressive museum by two retired police officers who wore 1950’s uniform to great effect. We learned all sorts of interesting facts about the police force, the first of which was set up in Wigan in 1836. They were called ‘Peelers’ after Sir Robert Peel, however, the public were so afraid of police officers going around in ordinary clothes and spying on them, that the police were never allowed to take their uniforms off, even when at home!
We also learned that up until the second world war, the role of the police force included running the fire service and ambulance service. The ambulance then had more to do with collecting dead bodies often on a hand-cart and bringing them to the police station morgue rather than administering first aid. This is why if you look closely at the crest at the top of a current police helmet, you will see St John's Cross representing the ambulance service, a shield representing the police and a ladder with flames around the side representing the fire service!
Our group were then given a tour of the Victorian charging office and were able to examine a very impressive array of exhibits, including some very startling improvised weapons confiscated from the public over the years: police batons, hand cuffs, old uniforms and motorbikes. We were also given a demonstration on the safe use of C.S. spray! We were then shown around the Magistrates Court which had originally been located in Tameside but was moved to the Museum a number of years ago. We were then all locked into a dark Victorian cell (with our consent) for a few moments. It was a bit scary but it really brought home to us what it may have been like for someone who had been locked up for nicking a cabbage or a sack of potatoes back in the day!
We also heard that the police station was built with steel plated walls and that this was to stop attempts by people to get prisoners unofficially released from the cells using explosives! We then inspected some old hand written police statements, a very old compression copier (photocopier) and pictures which showed how dirty the air in Manchester used to be in the past due to pollution. To finish up, we had the opportunity to dress up in police jackets, protective vests and helmets to have our pictures taken. Fantastic!
People First were delighted to be involved in the Hulme Winter Friendship Festival. David and Amar from housing were joined by Wesley from the befriending team on an afternoon full of wonderful wintry weather (i.e. hail!)
School children who visited our stall benefitted from the festive party season kits we were able to hand out, thanks to a cash grant from Manchester City Council. Others just came along for a chat and to catch the first glimpse of our new 2015 calendar.
It was great to see our tenants getting involved too - we spotted at least two with their own stall and we suspect Santa's Little Helper, offering sleigh rides around the park, may have been another of our tenants in disguise. Our lips are sealed!
People First is proud to announce that it has achieved the Gold award for Investors In People once more. Not only that, but for the second time we achieved every single one of their 196 standards.
Of the thousands of organisations with Investors In People in the Northwest, very few manage to do this! Kulbinder Kang, Chief Executive of People First said, "Achieving IIP gold status with 100% of all standards being met is a rare achievement and a great testament to our staff, of their commitment to ensuring that People First is an exemplar organisation to work for. I am proud of their achievement."
The Investors In People award looks at how well our staff understand the business, how well they are managed, how well they are engaged in decision-making and planning, how fairly they feel they are treated and how well we handle their talent. Four awards are available: standard, bronze, silver and gold
We are extremely proud of this award: It helps us attract and retain good staff and recognises the hard work they put in every day. We would like to thank every single one of them.
Would you believe it’s been almost twenty years since the first families moved into People First properties?
Way back on 8 August 1994, a handful of tenants first stepped over the threshold to the then new properties on Chevassut Street, Mary France Street, Royce Road and St Wilfrid’s Street, with many more moving in over the course of the next few months.
Twenty of those tenants who moved in then are still in the same home now and whilst some have moved on, there are plenty more who are still with People First, but in a different property.
Over the course of the summer, many of our tenants have been clebrating with street parties. If you are a People First tenants and would like to hold an event near your home, please contact us.
Do you sometimes have problems with your memory? Do you find it hard to keep track of your purse or wallet? Do you have trouble paying bills, planning and preparing meals, remembering appointments or travelling out of the neighbourhood?
Studies have shown that mentally exercising the brain can prevent or postpone dementia. Staying socially involved as you grow older is very important – it can even help you avoid depression. So read, travel or pursue your hobbies!
We have set up a cafe which is open to anyone worried about their memory. At the cafe, we offer advice about benefits and making claims, lots of fun and games as well as cake, tea and biscuits. We sometimes have guest speakers invited to talk about the care and support you can get or to offer ideas about healthy eating.
The cafe is open on the first Wednesday of every month from 1pm until 3pm at our head office in Manchester City Centre. For more information, please contact Ed O'Leary or Anna-Maria Earley on
0161 235 6900. We look forward to seeing you!
There are 800,000 people living with dementia in the UK now and by 2025 there will be over one million. So, dementia is one of the greatest challenges facing our ageing society today. We want all people with dementia to be able to say:
- I have personal choice and control or influence over decisions about me.
- I know that services are designed around me and my needs.
- I have support that helps me live my life.
- I have the knowledge and know-how to get what I need.
- I live in an enabling and supportive environment where I feel valued and understood.
- I have a sense of belonging and of being a valued part of family, community and civic life.
- I know there is research going on which delivers a better life for me now and hope for the future.
People First are delighted to announce that we have secured funding from the Directorate of Adults and Wellbeing in Manchester to continue our befriending project in Hulme and Moss Side. We have also secured funding to continue with the dementia cafe.
We are always interested in meeting new volunteers to help deliver befriending and social activities, assist with community fundraising and work in business development and administration related to the project.
Befrienders visit people in their own homes and organise social events in order to help reduce social isolation and loneliness and increase independence. The service is free and open to any vulnerable person living in Hulme or Moss Side.
Volunteers can choose how much time they want to give – from a couple of hours a week to a couple of days, all are welcome!
In return for their time our volunteers receive valuable experience in a professional setting, a full training package, reasonable out of pocket expenses and support to find permanent employment or other volunteering opportunities.
Due to working with vulnerable adults, we are required to carry out checks - which we will pay for - with the Disclosure and Barring Service. Previous experience is not essential for any of these volunteering opportunities.
If you are interested in volunteering, wish to take up the befriending service or know anyone who could benefit from the service, please call Wesley Langley on 0161 235 6900 or e-mail him by clicking here
We look forward to hearing from you soon!
You can even complete the volunteer application form online.