Aspire's Maintenance Services Team provides repairs, gas servicing and major improvements to 8,500 homes. We believe that we provide a very innovative repairs service and our submission will detail examples of our innovation around gas servicing, Equality and Diversity, value for money and providing training and employment opportunities. Our gas servicing team occasionally struggles to gain access to properties. To address this we worked with customers, Gas Safe, the HSE and fire service to develop a gas safety DVD which explains the importance of gas servicing and the dangers of carbon monoxide poisoning. This information is now provided in an interesting and accessible format which is embedded in our no access procedures. The DVD has been shortlisted for awards by Corgi and NHIC. Our commitment to Equality and Diversity flows through our operational practices. As our gas servicing team visit all our customer's homes, we use this opportunity to encourage customers to complete a customer profile form. This information is used to help us provide person centred services to customers. Not all customers can understand written or spoken English. To overcome this we developed a pictorial guide for operatives. This laminated sheet shows pictorially why we are at the property, eg gas servicing, and the likely duration of the visit. Front line colleagues are often best placed to identify customers who need support or who would benefit from other services Aspire provides. We have therefore enhanced our PDA�s to enable colleagues to indicate that a home visit is required, using a drop down menu with a range of options. This then generates an alert to the relevant team to action. We work closely with colleagues on a pre-tenancy training programme aimed at increasing tenancy sustainment levels, providing young customers with advice on benefits, money management etc. Our role is to provide on site training, in a flat, including how to erect shelves, operate heating systems and safety advice. Over the last 3 years we have delivered £900K of efficiencies. Our gas servicing team demonstrates our VFM approach at an operational level. Engineers now encourage customers to provide demographic information, install and service carbon monoxide detectors and test TMV's. These services are therefore provided more efficiently as well as minimizing inconvenience to customers. We have also raised £7,000 from suppliers to fund a customer make-over, supported by an interior designer. One of Aspire's aims is to regenerate disadvantaged communities, through providing training and job opportunities. We contribute to this agenda by working with the Group training company, PM Training, to provide apprenticeships for local residents. We currently support 16 apprentices which is 11.3% of our direct workforce. We also provide opportunities and tools for Future Jobs Fund colleagues to help long term unemployed people into work. Our depot is in a very deprived area within Newcastle. We are working with PM Training on alterations to our depot which will enable it to be used to provide training opportunities for residents from disadvantaged communities in the area.