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How to get involved

There are many ways you can get involved to help us improve our service to you 

If you'd like to know more about the ways you can participate, just email tenant.involvement@lewes-eastbourne.gov.uk for more information

Our 'Tenant Involvement Strategy 2019-2022' sets out the many ways you can get involved, whether you have 5 minutes or lots of time to spare. It’s all about how we engage in meaningful consultation and involvement and how what you tell us is used to shape the way that we provide housing services.

The TIE panel is made up of Lewes District and Eastbourne tenants who work with senior managers to discuss issues affecting tenants across all areas. The panel steers the work of the tenant scrutiny team (see below) and makes sure tenant interests are fully considered in all aspects of strategic decision making. 

Residents' Voice is made up of representatives from the four Area Panels - Central & Archery, Hampden Park & Willingdon Trees, Langney and Old Town. The group meets in February, May, August and November to share ideas and views, hear updates and discuss any issues with members of the tenant involvement and senior housing teams. 

The Area Panels meet on a monthly basis to discuss local issues and support their local areas by allocating funds from a community improvement budget and running community events such as Christmas Fayres and other gatherings. 

The Tenants Organisation of Lewes District (TOLD). TOLD holds four open meetings per year which all tenants can come along to. 

TOLD has a working committee which is made up of 12 tenants who are elected at the annual general meeting. The TOLD committee meets monthly with the tenant involvement team and senior housing managers to discuss on-going housing issues and updates on policy and any developments. The TOLD committee also oversees an annual budget to which Lewes District Council tenants can apply to make improvements to Council owned communal spaces and facilities. Tenants can also access the fund to support projects in their local communities or for projects that promote tenant involvement.

To find out more about TOLD, please take a look at their website Tenants of Lewes District website (TOLD) 

We have a scrutiny team made up of Lewes District and Eastbourne tenants to help us review and improve our housing service on an ongoing basis. Members are trained to carry out in depth reviews of a service area such as communal repairs or complaints monitoring for example. The scrutiny team produce a report on the service area in question and make evidence based recommendations that the Homes First senior leadership team use to agree service improvements.

We train tenants as mystery shoppers to test our services so we can make sure we are delivering them in line with agreed standards. Mystery shoppers remain anonymous when making enquiries to us by phone, email or in person and report back on their findings.

Quality Checkers are volunteers who complete specific quality checks on services such as cleaning and grounds maintenance. This work is currently being piloted in retirement housing schemes. 

Sometimes we set up focus groups to find out your views on a particular housing issue. We then use your opinions and views to help shape our future service to you.  

If you live in a retirement housing scheme, you can act as a representative to discuss the views and specific needs of tenants living at the scheme. 

Every year we hold a conference which gives tenants the opportunity to meet Homes First staff, see display stands with information on topical housing issues, attend useful workshops, network with other tenants and win fabulous prizes. 

We are recruiting 300 tenants to join an online community we have called the Virtual 300. By going digital we hope to involve more tenants by offering an accessible forum which can be accessed in ways and at times which better suit individual situations. We hope that this approach will enable us to consult more widely on more topics and involve more tenants from the comfort of their own home. Over 100 tenants have already become involved and been rewarded for their efforts with incentives such as regular prize draws.

We also work with our partners at “South East Training Uniting People” (SETUP) to offer free training. Other help, such as out of pocket expenses and advice and support is provided by our dedicated tenant involvement workers.

If you'd like to know more about any of the ways you can participate, just email tenant.involvement@lewes-eastbourne.gov.uk for more information