The Wider Picture
New Social Housing Regulator
On 1st April 2012 the Housing & Communities Agency (HCA) took over the responsibility for the regulation of Housing Associations in England. They also introduced a new framework for regulation, the key features contained in the framework include:-
Assessment of our performance against 'ecconomic' and 'consumer' standards. The ecconomic standards ensure that our Housing Association is well run and financially sound, while the consumer standards relate to the core services we provide to our tenants.
The HCA will mostly be concerned with the ecconomic standards. They have no role in monitoring how we are performing against our consumer standards, only becoming involved if there is a risk of serious detriment to tenants.
This is a significant change in the way we regulate our day to day services and it means greater responsibility on us to ensure we are performing well and working together with others to improve and develop.
The main principles of the framework include:
- Tenant scrutiny
- Value for money
- Tenants data, and
- Handling complaints
At WHA we will continue to work with our residents to ensure that our standards are of the highest quality and we will continue to monitor the situation and inform our residents of future changes.
The BIG Society Network
The Big Society Network was launched by the coalition government in 2010. It is the flagship idea of the Conservative Party, included in their general election manifesto.
The Big Society Network exists to generate, develop and showcase new ideas to help people to come together to do good things.
Plans under the BIG Society include
- Setting up Big Society Bank
- Giving communities more power
- Encouraging people to take on active roles in their community
- Transfering power from central to local government
- Supporting co-ops, mutuals, charities and social enterprises
The Big Society Network plans to achieve this by introducing a new localism agenda and by working in partnership with communities, businesses, charities, foundations and statutory bodies on a variety of projects based on strenghtening communities and encouraging people to engage in giving and charity in new and innovative ways.
The localism agenda offers significant opportunities, but it also poses real challenges to find new solutions to deliver better value and better services which are tailored to local need.
We are planning to work with residents in a variety of ways to meet these challenges in the future, if you feel you want to be involved just contact us.
For more information about the Big Society Network follow our useful link
Trafford Hall - Our National Resouce Centre - on our doorstep!
Trafford Hall is home to the National Communities Resource Centre, a registered charity offering training and support to those living and working in low-income areas across the UK to develop their skills, confidence and capacity to tackle problems and reverse poor conditions.
Trafford Hall offers day and residential courses which are designed to meet the needs of a diverse range of families, young people and adults, which are regularly evaluated to ensure that they are achieving the charity's aims.
Trafford Hall is a magnificent Grade 2 listed building, set in 14 acres of beautiful Cheshire gardens and grounds, including an organically managed garden.
Training for tenants
They provide training to tenants, residents, families, young people and community volunteers, providing them with the skills and tools to tackle the problems they face and helping them build sustainable communities.
Courses aim to provide participants with new skills, knowledge and confidence to inspire people to organise local projects effectively.
Current training programmes are:
Tenant Futures: For tenants and residents of Local Authorities and Housing Associations in England the courses focus on positive local action to tackle problems, the development of groups and management of social housing.
DIY Community Action: For community volunteers throughout the UK the courses focus on sustainability in communities, health and local social enterprise
Community Futures: For community volunteers throughout the UK the courses help people boost their resilience in the face of current climate change and economic circumstances.