The challenge

When I think about a job, I get doubts in the back of my head. It makes me not go further with it.

St Ann’s Resident

Metropolitan Thames Valley Housing provides affordable housing and a range of care and support services for their residents. Based on the belief that everyone should have the chance to live well, they partnered with Shift to understand, explore and test the potential of community-led employment models to help people who are out of work to find work or routes into work.

Our approach

I think work experience is the main thing for me because I don’t think people realise what work involves.

St Ann’s Resident

Focusing on the area of St. Ann’s in Nottingham, we’re taking a peer-led approach, recruiting local community connectors to engage residents and to design and run project activities with support from the regional MTVH team and Shift. Our goal is to emerge with some concrete, tested concepts for community-led employment that can be further developed and funded.

So far…

  • Recruited and onboarded 3 local community connectors
  • Training for community connectors in research, listening, sensemaking, design and testing
  • Workshops, listening activities and research run by community connectors with our support, engaging people who are unemployed or recently returned to work
  • Learning downloads, research analysis and development of design briefs
  • Ideation, co-creation and concept development with community connectors
  • Testing of 5 community-led employment concepts at a community feedback day in St. Ann’s


Community connectors and team members from Shift and Metropolitan Thames Valley Housing




Do you want to get involved? We'd love to hear from you
Email me -