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Published - June 2024

Performance Improvement Plan 2024 - 2025

Improvement objective 6: Compassionate city

In addition to the specific actions set out below, we will support our residents through the cost-of-living crisis by delivering of our normal programme of work contained within the Belfast Agenda 2024-28, the draft Corporate Plan 2024-28, committee plans and supporting departmental and business plans.

Improvement objective 6

We will support our residents through the cost-of-living crisis.

Why is this an improvement objective?

  • Aligned to the outcomes, priorities, strategic intent and actions within the Belfast Agenda 2024-28 and draft Corporate Plan 2024-28. 
  • Elected members identified the cost-of-living crisis as a key priority during corporate planning engagement sessions. 
  • We understand the pressures that the cost-of-living crisis is having on citizens and households.
  • As part of community planning, we will also continue to work collaboratively with a range of stakeholders to provide the most needed support for children and young people, families, and individuals across the city.  

Relevant strategies, plans and evidence at regional and local level

Regional: The Executive’s Child Poverty Strategy, NI Audit Office Child Poverty in Northern Ireland Report, The Trussell Trust State of Hunger Report, DfC Poverty, and Income Inequality (PII) Report

Local: Belfast Inclusive Growth Strategy, Belfast City Council Social Value Procurement Policy

Alignment to the Belfast Agenda and corporate plan

Belfast Agenda outcome: Belfast is a place where everyone fulfils their potential.

Belfast Agenda and corporate plan theme: Compassionate City – Making Belfast a welcoming, caring, and inclusive city – leaving no-one behind.

Belfast Agenda and corporate plan priority: Inclusive Growth and Anti-Poverty

Statutory aspect of improvement 
  • Strategic effectiveness
  • Service quality, availability, and fairness
  • Sustainability
  • Efficiency
  • Innovation

We will:

  • In partnership, promote support and advice services across the city to help with the high cost of living and anti-poverty.
  • Develop a funding commissioning framework to support the implementation of a Hardship Programme for 2024-25, to ensure that support is available for those most impacted by poverty and the cost-of-living crisis.
  • Deliver cost of living and anti-poverty interventions for example Social Supermarkets, to provide support for those most in need. 
  • Provide funding and support to community-based advice services across the city to provide dedicated and tailored support to individuals.
  • Implement the recommendations of the review of Belfast City Council Funded advice services.
  • Provide funding and support to the Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise  (VCSE) sector to enable them to deliver  capacity support and local services.
  • Develop and agree a new four-year community support plan (2025-29) to improve how we provide support to our local communities and residents across the city.

Our measures of success for 2025 include:

  • Supporting 27,500 people through accessing online and cost of living support guides.
  • Hosting at least one marketplace event in City Hall to enhance awareness of available local support services and associated referral pathways.
  • Supporting 21 Social Supermarkets with up to £50k per project to provide food support, alongside wraparound services.     
  • Providing up to £1.3m funding to 14 Advice Organisations, who are supported by 5 advice consortia, providing advice services to at least 20k clients across the city.
  • Establishing a new partnership agreement with defined KPI's with 5 advice consortia.
  • Providing and managing £1.9m of funding through the capacity building grant programme to support 43 organisations.
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