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Wintercomfort's flagship Social Enterprise Overstream Clean scoops National Award


Wintercomfort's flagship Social Enterprise Overstream Clean scoops National Award


Wintercomfort's cleaning social enterprise has achieved recognition in a national award for its unique social enterprise, Overstream Clean. The business employs only homeless people with the object of boosting their skills, confidence and self-esteem. It is run competitively as a professional cleaning company.


At Homelesslink's annual awards ceremony in London Overstream Clean came third nationally in the Social Enterprise Excellence Award category. 


Rachel Newell, Social Enterprise Manager at Wintercomfort who founded the business, said she was delighted to gain national recognition for Overstream Clean. Founded in  2014 offering both cleaning and gardening services.


She said: “We recently completed an impact report and the findings showed that Overstream Clean has a excellent track record for keeping service users in employment and 60% of people maintained employment. We act as a bridge into employment by developing service users’ independence, self-esteem, quality of life and health. 80% of people we worked with stated that their self-esteem had improved. Many people said that as a result of working with Overstream Clean they felt they gained a greater stake in society, feeling they were actively included in, and positively contributing to, society. This appears to be a major factor in improving the personal circumstances of service users.


“Furthermore, 87.5% of customers said they would be likely or very likely to recommend Overstream Clean to others. For our gardening service in particular, the feedback from customers about the quality of work was 4.8/5.”


Rachel added: “We are so encouraged by achieving our first award in such a challenging category, we are now expanding to provide minor works and renovation work. We can cut down and clear garden shrubbery, thorn bushes, small trees, pull down old sheds and remove rubbish. If we can help, please get in touch.”


 Duncan’s story of working with Overstream Clean.


Duncan had been sleeping rough for two years before coming to Overstream Clean. He describes homelessness as being ‘like hibernation’ as he had very little motivation and confidence. 


Overstream Clean helped him regain this motivation to re-enter the working market. In addition to this, Duncan felt that Overstream Clean helped him make his CV and cover letter more professional and gave him a character and job reference for future employment and accommodation. Without these references, he doesn’t think that he would have been able to gain a different job or tenancy. 


Through Overstream Clean, Duncan gained and improved various resources for work and built up his confidence to transition from homelessness to future employment.


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