For this month’s ‘Meet the Scheme’, we spoke to Bob Bingham at The Big Help Project, which hosts Community RePaint Liverpool, to find out more about what happens behind the scenes.
Bob, tell us a little bit about The Big Help Project, and why the organisation became a Community RePaint scheme?
The Big Help Project started in 2011 as a food bank, providing support for those in crisis. Over the last 10 years, more departments have opened so the project can provide wrap-around support. This includes the food club, baby basics, debt advice and Community RePaint Liverpool. All of these services aim to assist people to a better future.
We joined as Community RePaint Liverpool in 2016, with the aim to help families make their house feel like a home. Working alongside the local housing associations, the team create and deliver decorating boxes across the north west. These boxes include ReColour remanufactured paint, decorating tools and an information sheet with decorating tips.
Can you tell us what your typical working day is like?
A typical day starts with Anna, the admin assistance, and myself responding to all new paint enquiries. This can be from housing associations, tenants and the general public. I also spend my mornings contacting other stakeholders to broaden the number of people we can help.
Richy, a member of the warehouse team, starts by making the decorating pack for the day and loading the van. Then from 10 o clock, we go out and deliver paint across the region for the next 4-5 hours. After that we head back, unload the van and start all over again the next morning.
What have been Community RePaint Liverpool’s biggest achievements thus far?
I would say our biggest achievement is the number of people we have been able to help. The decorating boxes we create, make a huge difference in peoples lives. In the last year, we have provided 1,364 decorating boxes, benefiting 3,273 tenants. When a family arrives in a new house with no means to decorate it, it doesn’t feel like their home. So this opportunity gives tenants the option to put their touch on the space, and that is special.
Do you have any painting tips that you can share with us?
Before you use a roller wrap it in masking tape and then pull it off. This will remove any debris and loose bits.
The Big Help Project will continue to provide food and support to those in need. Community RePaint Liverpool will continue to support local communities, as well as make a real difference to the environment, ensuring that no paint goes to waste. We want to continue expanding and supplying paint to other housing associations across the northwest region