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Follow on: 'Strength of your voice' online event

08 January 2021

Author: Maria Moriarty

Thank you to all residents who attended the last event of 2020 about the 'Strength of your voice'. 

33 residents registered for the event with 10 residents attending on 2 December 2020.  

The event was hosted by Bernadette Conroy, Chair of Network Homes Board, and Helen Evans, Chief Executive of Network Homes. The event was an opportunity to discuss the ways we are improving transparency and increasing the number of residents who are formally involved as a way to hear more from people receiving our services. 

The questions shared in advance were:

  • What does resident engagement mean to you?
  • How can we achieve maximum impact through resident engagement throughout our organisation?
  • We have roughly 20,000 residents but only 70 involved residents. What do you think is stopping residents getting involved in service improvements and what do you think we need to work on to change this and remove the barrier for some people? 

Attendees main views were:

  • influencing services is important, but there was no appetite to be involved in the governance of the business through resident engagement.
  • The dedication to being involved formally is a limiting factor for residents due to work and family committments 
  • Network Homes must do more to improve the basics such as how we respond to Anti-Social Behaviour and matters surrounding service charge. 
  • Hearing from residents on local issues is more of a priority than the strategic decisions

We sent surveys to both attendees and those who were unable to attend to see what they liked about the event and how we can further support to increase attendance in the future to make the most of these opportunities.

A highlight during the event was when a resident expressed they were slightly apprehensive about using technology and not being familiar with Microsoft Teams; but leaving the meeting saying we should do more online events like this as it was great to meet other residents and staff. 

What's next?

Thanks to the magic of ever changing technology, joining a resident event with us will be easier than before. Microsoft Teams has now introduced the function of breakout rooms. This means you won't need different links for your virtual 'table' any more. All you'll need to do is join using one meeting link, and in the background we'll do all the technical bits to split attendees into smaller groups to be able to hear from everyone. We hope this will support more people joining the upcoming events throughout the year. 

Findings from this event will be considered alongside the most recent Big Conversation to support how we adapt resident engagement in times where we are unable to meet face to face and continue to involve more residents in the reviewing our services and supporting local communities. 

See how you can get involved to become a #residentforchange.

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