Helm Housing Association have celebrated 40 years in the social housing sector at their annual conference.
Alongside social housing colleagues, DSD officials and Helm stakeholders, the company acknowledged how the social housing sector in Northern Ireland has transformed housing provision in towns, cities and rural areas across the region since it was first established
The conference, at Queen’s University’s Management School, also recognised the organisation’s four decades of work across the sector.
Helm Housing, which manages over 5,000 properties, was first established in 1975 and concentrated exclusively on renovating existing properties. Growing from 307 tenancies in 1979, the association now provides accommodation for over 15,000 people in each of Northern Ireland’s six counties. Helm also engages in innovative partnership delivery with over twenty specialist care providers including Belfast Health & Social Care Trust, De Paul Ireland, Simon Community, Salvation Army and Praxis.
The conference heard from a number of speakers including CEO Michael McDonnell and Bernie Rooney, DSD Director of Housing.
Speaking at the event, Chair of Helm Housing Liz Cuddy said: “Helm Housing Association’s forty years in operation is testament to team members past and present and the innovation and commitment to building quality homes in the social housing sector in Northern Ireland. Emerging at a time when housing provision was in almost permanent crisis, the organisation has grown to become one of the region’s leading housing providers. Housing Associations transformed housing provision in towns, cities and rural areas when they first emerged and are ready for the future challenges which face the sector.”