Housing Association’s Foundation granted charitable status

Aster Foundation, the charitable arm of housing association Aster Group, has been granted official charity status six years after it launched.

The Charity Commission decision means the Foundation is now formally a separate entity from the Housing Association, with a board of trustees.

The Foundation’s chair has been named as Amanda Wiggan, who has sat on a number of public sector boards and committees for among others the British Transport Police, and is social services inspector. She also has ‘lived experience’ having lived in housing association accommodation.

Half of the Association’s housing is in disadvantaged neighbourhoods.

“Since the conception of the Foundation in 2016, we have strived to enable the better lives of the people who live in and around Aster communities.

“This is an exciting next step for us, and we know that by working together with partners and developing our charity further, we can help people to connect in ways which enrich their lives and provide greater access to opportunities,” said Aster Foundation director Cam Kinsella.

“We are honoured to have Amanda on board to help us to connect even further with our communities and to give them a voice in the areas which matter to them.”

Wiggan added: “As someone who has benefitted from the work of housing associations in the past, I know first-hand the importance and significance of the work they do. For people in our society, having a home and an address is crucial – without this it’s simply impossible to apply for work, benefits or build the foundations for a better life.

“I’m thrilled to be joining the Aster Foundation. I know from the various roles I’ve held over the years that to make change, you have to be the change. I look forward to acting as a critical friend – helping the charity to realise its goals and remain a champion for the communities it operates in.”

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