Cestria is one of the first to be awarded prestigious accreditation
Published by Ailsa Macmillan for Cestria Community Housing in Housing and also in Communities
A North East housing association is one of the first to achieve a prestigious national accreditation in recognition of its dedication to working with its tenants to make a positive change in the community.
Cestria Community Housing, which owns and manages homes in and around Chester-le-Street, has achieved a TPAS (Tenant Participation Advisory Service) Quality Assured Scrutiny accreditation.
The accreditation was awarded by TPAS, the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) and HouseMark in recognition of the hard work of Cestria’s tenant scrutiny committee for their dedication and commitment to the local community.
The tenant scrutiny committee is made up of seven tenants who are at the heart of the decision making process, allowing them to challenge, influence and control how their housing services are delivered.
Paul Hadden Community Engagement Officer from Cestria Community Housing, said: “Cestria has been working very closely with the tenant scrutiny committee as part of our commitment to tenant involvement.
“Cestria is one of only a few housing associations in the north of England to achieve this accreditation, and it is something which both Cestria and its tenants can be proud of.
“We are leading the way in terms of our scrutiny process and decision making initiatives and this is a great way to thank our tenants in terms of their commitment to it on a voluntary basis.”
Tenants within the committee have reviewed important topics, such as aids and adaptations for disabled and elderly tenants, and a review of the furniture packages scheme offered by Cestria to its new tenants.
The main benefits of the tenant scrutiny committee is that it gives control to tenants in shaping services as well as developing their personal skills, knowledge and confidence.
Cestria also benefits through improved performance with tenants driving accountability and increased community confidence.
Jenny Topham Acting Chief Executive of TPAS said: “Cestria has clearly demonstrated that they value the importance of scrutiny in their organisation and has implemented detailed and meaningful scrutiny arrangements that have passed the exacting standards of the Quality Assured Scrutiny framework. Well done to everyone involved.”
Ken Martin a resident on Cestria’s tenant scrutiny committee since it was formed two years ago, said: “We are elated to have achieved the accreditation because it’s an appreciation of the work we have done.
“It’s nice to know that there’s somebody you can go to and you can report a problem and it’s going to be looked at – we call them triggers.
“We are absolutely delighted that what we have done is appreciated by Cestria.
“Overall the work we do is for the tenants and anything we do is to improve it for them.”
The official awards ceremony will take place in May at Cestria’s office with tenants and staff in attendance.