11th June, 2013
David from Northumberland contacted Five Lamps in February 2013, to discuss extended his current personal loan. Vince Rogers, Five Lamps Loan Of...
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Five Lamps wins the 2012 Impact Champion Award at the RBS SE100 Index Award ceremony on 5 December 2012 at RBS in London.
Set up in the ‘80s to help unemployed men back into work after steel works closed, Five Lamps is needed as much now as it ever was in the deprived areas of the north east of England to get people out of poverty and into work. Today, as a charity, social enterprise, and Community Development Finance Institution, it helps 25,000 people a year take control of their finances through advising on training and careers as well as providing disadvantaged people with affordable business and personal loans unavailable to them through mainstream lenders.
Five Lamps has a turnover of over £3 million a year and spreads its work over four business areas:
Five Lamps is now creating and developing the Great North Loan Fund. In its capacity as the only Community Development Finance Institution in the north east of England, it has created this fund to be a recognised and trusted regional brand offering a full range of financial services for local people. Together with credit unions and advice agencies they will offer affordable credit, job and business advice, banking services, access to white goods, financial literacy training and debt advice to disadvantaged individuals across the breadth of the region.
The RBS SE100 Index, researched by the University of the West of England, tracked the business activity of 365 social enterprises, with a combined turnover of £778 million, during 2012. Unlike traditional business sectors, social enterprises are set up to solve social or environmental problems and profits are ploughed back into the enterprise.
The RBS SE100 Index provides market intelligence for the sector and found that the top 100 growing enterprises grew on average by a recession-busting 60% in the last year and also found that these organisations had an 85% higher turnover than last year’s top 100.
Tim West, Director and Founder of Matter&Co, which created the RBS SE100 in partnership with RBS said: “We were not only looking for an organisation which had clearly measured its social value, but one which in doing so had improved its business. The judges were impressed with the step changes Five Lamps have made from their first impact report to their second and how that has improved the effectiveness of its organisation. By measuring its value they have been able to win funding to refurbish badly needed housing.”
Graeme Oram, chief executive of Five Lamps said: “We’re delighted that our increased efforts in social reporting have resulted in new business, the way we organise our business and also in winning this award!”
Five Lamps are celebrating after being placed in The Sunday Times 100 Best Not-for-Profit Organisations to Work For list for the second successive year.
Five Lamps were placed high on the list because of their best employment practice, with staff strongly feeling that they can make a positive contribution to the charity’s success – a positive result bettered only by just three other organisations. Employees at Five Lamps, which ranks 11 for Leadership, are inspired by Graeme Oram, the Chief Executive, who scored fourth for leadership overall. Five Lamps ranked sixth overall for staff feeling excited about where the charity is going.
Graeme Oram, Chief Executive said “Everybody at Five Lamps is absolutely thrilled at our recognition as a great place to work. We have for some time understood just how important it is to invest in the professional and social development of our staff. This result shows what we have always believed, that a positive and motivated team of committed and talented people are best placed to create possibilities and change the lives of the thousands of people each year who use our services”.
Employing over 90 members of staff, Five Lamps was one of only a few North East companies to be feature in The Sunday Times' list.
“In addition to our pride in continuing to be a best company to work for, we were also proud to be shortlisted for Company of the Year in the Tees Valley section of the North East Business Awards last night. We have some extremely ambitious plans moving forward and would hope to be contenders again next year” said Graeme Oram, Chief Executive of Five Lamps
The Sunday Times Best Not-for-Profit Organisations to Work For 2012 List was published in The Sunday Times on 11 March 2012.
Congratulations to Graeme Oram and Jodie Hind of Five Lamps, winners of the North East VCS Awards 2011.
Jodie Hind won Volunteer of the Year.
Jodie is a volunteer Mentor at Five Lamps with referral links with Police, Prisons and Probation services. Jodie has achieved qualifications in Counselling and completed training in Drugs and Alcohol awareness and safeguarding.
Jodie is a former prolific offender and chaotic drug and alcohol user spending 70% of his life between 15 and 31 in institutions and Prisons. He decided to change his life prior to his last release in May 2009, enrolling on learning courses and volunteering with Five Lamps.
Jodie regularly attends sessions with offenders, helping them to challenge their former behaviour. He will track them on release to continue to mentor them in maintaining drug and offending free lifestyles. Feedback includes "It made me think about life out there. If Jodie can do it, so can I". "It was good as it shows that the bad apple can change".
Jodie is an inspiration to those he mentors and to the rest of the team around him. It is humbling to see the change in those who engage with Jodie, coupled with "it's just me doing a job" approach.
Graeme Oram won Outstanding Leadership.
Graeme is described by his nominee as a 'world class leader' and lists a catalogue of successes at the helm of Five Lamps which underline his outstanding leadership. These include success in securing contracts to deliver public services, totaling over £8million in the last 15 months. Five Lamps is the fastest-growing Community Development Finance Institution in the UK, delivering 10,000 personal loans in 2010/11.
As Chief Executive he has doubled the number of staff in the last year. He has helped scope the feasibility of the 'Great North Loan Fund', now seeking to create a £10million loan fund to address financial exclusion in the North East and Cumbria and issue a prospectus for social investment later this year. Graeme recognises that debt blights the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in Stockton and is providing an effective alternative to doorstep lenders and loan sharks, along with employability support, youth services and enterprise, helping people to get out and stay out of debt.
- May 2011
Five Lamps are celebrating after being placed at number 13 in The Sunday Times Best Company to Work in the Public and Charity Sectors list 2011.
Five Lamps’ were ranked in the top 10 in the Best Companies employee survey for questions on wellbeing and also in the top 20 for Leadership and My Team.
Graeme Oram, Chief Executive said “Everybody at Five Lamps is absolutely thrilled at our recognition as a great place to work. We have for some time understood just how important it is to invest in the professional and social development of our staff. This result shows what we have always believed, that a positive and motivated team of committed and talented people are best placed to create possibilities and change the lives of the thousands of people each year who use our services”
Five Lamps have been successful in achieving the Investors in People’s Gold Standard.
The standard is awarded to organisations that demonstrate a commitment to the learning and development of their employees and achieve best practice in people management. Less than 1% of all Investors in People organisations in the UK achieve the Investors in people Gold Standard, placing Five Lamps in a minority, alongside only 30 companies within the North East that have also achieved the standard.
This is a real achievement for Five Lamps and it means that we have achieved world-wide best practice. Five Lamps achieved the Gold Standard after being assessed in its engagement with employees, investment in and staff take-up of training, quality of appraisals and one-to-one sessions.
The gold standard award highlights the good practices that operate throughout the organisation and the excellent staff that we having working at Five Lamps.
Graeme Oram, Chief Executive of Five Lamps said “Five Lamps has always recognised our staff are our greatest asset and we have committed a significant investment towards their personal and professional development.The success of Five Lamps is predicated on high quality service delivery and providing great customer experiences. We are delighted to have secured the Investors in People gold standard as a positive endorsement of our aim to be a brilliant employer”.
- September 2010