Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council has been shortlisted for the prestigious Council of the Year Award in the Association of Public Service Excellence (APSE) awards.
The APSE awards recognise the very best in local government frontline services, with councils throughout the UK recognised for their achievements in delivering excellence.
This year the awards have attracted over 450 submissions with over 150 organisations taking part from across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
As well as being shortlisted for the overall 2015 Council of the Year Award the local authority has also been nominated for four separate service award categories.
Councillor Bob Cook, Leader of Stockton Council, said: “The Council’s teams aim to provide excellent front-line services. Being shortlisted for four individual APSE service awards, as well as shortlisted for Council of the Year Award, is a huge achievement and welcome recognition of our desire to provide first class services and opportunities to our residents, businesses and visitors.”
Neil Schneider, Chief Executive of Stockton Council, added: “Our hard working and dedicated staff work tirelessly to provide high quality services in very challenging times. These awards show that their contribution has not gone unnoticed and is recognised as being innovative and of the highest standard.”
The Council is just one of eight local authorities nationally to be shortlisted for the APSE Overall Council of the Year award. The overall Council of the Year award and APSE service award winners will be announced on 3 September.
The four service award categories that Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council has been shortlisted for are as follows:
Best employment and equality initiative – Matty’s Bistro
Matty’s Bistro is an innovative partnership project led by Stockton-on-Tees Borough
Council and works with the hardest to reach NEET (not in employment, education or training) young people. Young people spend three months working in a commercial kitchen with a professional chef getting a taster of all aspects of the catering industry and leave with a qualification. To date, over 70 per cent of the trainees have progressed into further training or employment.
Best community and neighbourhood initiative – Psst…Positively Stockton-on-Tees
When it was announced that Channel 4 television series ‘Benefits Street’ was to be filmed in the Borough the Council created a platform on which the community could share positive stories, pictures, thoughts and experiences of Stockton-on-Tees which would provide a balanced portrayal of life here.
Best renewable energy or energy efficiency initiative – Cutting Carbon, Changing Lives in Stockton-on-Tees
The Council has a history of improving home energy efficiency, tackling affordable warmth and improving health and well-being. More than 22,000 households have received energy efficiency measures from innovative Council programmes such as ‘Warmer Homes Healthy People’, directly removing 4,555 households from fuel poverty and reducing domestic carbon emissions.
Best service team of the year – Sisters are doing it for themselves!
‘Sisters are doing it for themselves!’ is a successful group cycling and running programme created by Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council to increase opportunities for girls and women to improve their fitness and health, have fun and make friendships.