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QBE Foundation and Crisis: 3 years of working together to end homelessness

After three years of working together and donations totalling almost £400,000,the partnership between Crisis and the QBE Foundation is coming to its natural end, We couldn’t let the moment pass without looking at the partnership and the achievements that would not have been possible with QBE’s incredible support.

The QBE Foundation chose Crisis as their new charity partner in January 2020 as part of their organisational effort to build more inclusive, and sustainable communities. The partnership was initially due to last two years; however, an extra year of support was agreed during the midst of the pandemic to offer assistance through this unprecedented time.

Grant Clemence, QBE EO Foundation chair commented “very early into our partnership with Crisis we were all hit by the pandemic. We wanted to adapt our plans to provide emergency grant funding where it mattered most and supporting people experiencing homelessness was an obvious need as the UK population was required to stay at home. We also decided to extend our partnership for a further year, because it soon became apparent that the uncertainty would be with us longer than anyone had expected. I am proud to say that QBE Business Insurance contributed almost £400,000 to Crisis, ensuring people affected by homelessness had the support they needed.” 

Areas of funding

Over the last three years the QBE’s Foundation supported different Crisis campaigns and areas of work, such as the emergency appeal In This Together, which was launched to help the most vulnerable at the time of the pandemic. In addition, QBE also offered support for the Home For All Campaign, which called for a new approach to ending homelessness by rolling out Housing First, a renewed strategy that prioritises housing and gives people the support they need to keep a home.

The QBE Foundation has been a steady supporter of the Crisis Christmas campaign and donated a total of £60,000 towards the Christmas appeals Connect for Crisis and Stand with Crisis from 2020 to 2022, funding the Christmas services and helping people experiencing homelessness take their first steps out of homelessness.

The structured coaching team at Crisis’ Skylight London also received funding from the business insurance specialist which directly benefitted Crisis members and enabled the team to work with individuals to secure employment and/or housing.

Structured Coaches offer one-to-one, tailored support that helps address individual needs and builds on people’s unique strengths. Support is built around goals and behavioural setting, working to deadlines and maintaining the right attitude to problem solving.

The types of support someone might access to help end their homelessness are things such as vocational skills and qualifications, health and well-being through working with coaches in a psychologically informed way, help and advice on government entitlements, like Universal Credit or income-related benefits or establishing connections with local community groups and services that will help foster a sense of belonging and a support network.

“We are hugely grateful for QBE’s financial support for the past three years. With their support Crisis was able to quickly adapt services during the pandemic and ensure members continued to receive the support they needed during such a difficult time. The extended funding for our Structured Coaching team made a real difference, as the lead worker approach has proven to be very successful in ending someone’s homelessness. An enormous thank you to QBE and its amazing staff for giving your time and resources to help us end homelessness for good.”- Mayaz Rahman, Head of Corporate Engagement

Employee engagement

We would also like to highlight the phenomenal engagement of QBE employees with our cause. Employees spent more than 240 hours volunteering their time in our Shops Warehouse steaming and tagging clothes and sorting through boxes of donations; lending their expertise as Changing Lives Grants panellists looking at applications from members interested in accessing further training and education courses to reach their employment goals; and being a friendly and helpful face for our members at our Christmas centres and hotels during the festive season.

Apart from the hands-on support we received from QBE employees over the years, they have also shown dedication to our cause by taking part in fundraising events such as marathons or Crisis’ Step Forward to end Homelessness Challenge, raising more than £45,000.

A huge thank you to the QBE Foundation and its employees who volunteered their time and supported Crisis in the past three years. Your support and dedication really made a difference to our service delivery and the people we work with.