Housing Associations Embrace Tenant Participation Training

Staff from Rural Housing Association discussing the approaches to Tenant Participation with our trainer Stephanie Kenny QuiNn

Staff from Rural Housing Association discussing the approaches to Tenant Participation with our trainer Stephanie Kenny QuiNn

Supporting Communities is delighted to have recently delivered tailored training in Tenant Participation to staff from Rural Housing Association and NB Housing.

The training for both organisations took place in May and the participants represented all sectors within each company from Chief Executive, Maintenance, Receptionists, Housing Management, Administration, and Finance.

Staff from Rural Housing Association completed a two-day OCN Level 2 accreditation in Tenant Participation & Community Development. Twelve members of staff immersed themselves in the training which sought to raise awareness of the role that every employee has in promoting and encouraging participation.

In addition, and with guidance from Supporting Communities, staff looked at the potential to update their Tenant Participation Strategy and Menu of Involvement in line with the Department's new Tenant Participation Strategy NI 2015-2020. One member of staff commented, "This training was interesting, informative and interactive and the tutors were very engaging.”

Rural Housing Association found the training to be just what they needed:  

"We found the training sessions received from Supporting Communities ticked all the boxes and has helped staff understand the practices of Tenant Participation and Community Development while enabling them to have a greater grasp on how they can become more effective in practicing tenant participation in their everyday to day roles. Our two trainers, Stephanie and Sheenagh, created an excellent and informative programme that suited our needs perfectly”.

NB Housing staff members doing plenty of work at their training session

Bespoke Training

NB Housing chose a different route to look at Tenant Participation. Supporting Communities developed and delivered a one-day training session to twelve members of staff from a variety of disciplines and representing all levels within the company. The staff focussed on their strategy, their menu of involvement, and how to attract new Community Champions.

Caroline Keenan Jackson Director of Housing and Corporate Services appreciated the tailored nature of the training programme:

“Supporting Communities have provided the team at NB Housing with an invaluable training event in Tenant Participation. The session focused on the development of the Tenant Participation Strategy, methods to further involve NB Housing tenants in how services are delivered by examining different approaches to engagement such as mystery shoppers, armchair surveys, and champion panels. The session also focused on the importance of community development and how it can positively impact our tenants.
NB Housing values tenant input and looks forward to implementing our Tenant Participation Strategy and the full range of opportunities for engagement. The training highlighted new approaches and we look forward to working with Supporting Communities in the future as the strategy rolls out.”

Sheenagh Mc Nally, Housing Association Development Officer at Supporting Communities, was really pleased with the commitment shown by both Housing Associations:

“It is so refreshing to work with two Housing Associations with very different remits (one urban, one rural) who have placed Tenant Participation firmly at the core of their business. This was most clearly demonstrated by the attendance of all departments from all levels at the training. Supporting Communities has for many years stated that Tenant Participation is not purely a Housing Management function, it is a role that must be performed by every single member of staff regardless of pay grade. It was a pleasure to meet the staff from Rural Housing Association and NB Housing who displayed a real drive and enthusiasm for Tenant Participation and engagement.”

Read more

Helm Housing recently wrote an article on their experience of working with Supporting Communities to develop and implement a tenant engagement strategy.  Read about the process and the results here!

Find out how we can help your Housing Association

Tenant Participation training and many other courses are available from Supporting Communities.

If you would like more information on our training courses or our Menu of Services designed specifically for Housing Associations, contact Sheenagh Mc Nally at sheenagh@supportingcommunities.org or on 028 3834 2792.