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Tenants ready to scrutinise thanks to training

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Tenants ready to scrutinise thanks to training

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Published by Kelly Elliott for Keepmoat in Housing and also in Communities

Tenants from Nuneaton and Bedworth Council’s newly formed Resident Scrutiny Panel  are pictured with staff from Bravo Kilo Ltd, Keepmoat and the Council during their recent training session. Tenants from Nuneaton and Bedworth Council’s newly formed Resident Scrutiny Panel are pictured with staff from Bravo Kilo Ltd, Keepmoat and the Council during their recent training session.

The housing services provided by a West Midlands council will soon be under inspection by tenants after specialist training sessions were provided to allow them to carry out the job.

A group of four tenants from Nuneaton and Bedworth Council have been selected to form a brand new Resident Scrutiny Panel, set up to allow tenants and leaseholders to look into different areas of service provided by the authority and identify potential improvements.

With such an important role to play, it is essential that tenants are given the correct support. The Council therefore teamed up with housing and regeneration company Keepmoat, which is currently replacing bathrooms and kitchens in council homes, to provide the training required.

The sessions, delivered by Training Consultants Bravo Kilo Ltd, focused on topics such as what scrutiny is, why it is important and collecting, analysing and interpreting information.

Nuneaton and Bedworth Council Involvement and Communication Officer Sarah Cox said: “The members of the Resident Scrutiny Panel have a really important job to do. They represent the views and priorities of all our tenants so it is vital that we give them the backing and support they need.”

Now the training is complete the panel will begin work on their first project - assessing the council’s Local Improvement Scheme, which provides grants for community improvements, and looking at how to increase the number of applications and variety of projects applying for funding.

It is expected that the panel will scrutinise between two and four different services each year, with a report containing their findings and recommendations for improvements then delivered to the council’s councillor-led Overview and Scrutiny panel.

Bob from Nuneaton is one of the members of the new panel. He said: “I’ve been involved in housing services for a few years now, and I feel that the scrutiny panel is the best way to use the confidence and knowledge that I’ve gained over that time.

“We are going to be able to make a real difference to the services tenants and leaseholders receive and learn so much about how the council works in the process.

“The training has helped cement my knowledge about scrutiny and I’m now ready to start our first project.”

Keepmoat Community Investment Manager Lorraine McMullen, who organised and helped design the training sessions said: “It has been a pleasure for Keepmoat to provide this training for the new Resident Scrutiny Panel.

“As a company, we are always keen to support projects that encourage tenant and lease holder involvement and enable them to gain new skills.

“The Scrutiny Panel members are all really motivated to make a difference and I’m sure that this training has given them the skills and confidence that they need to shape how their local services are designed."

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