How to get involved
We have lots of opportunities for you to be involved so you can shape our services to meet your needs.
Here are some of the involvement opportunities currently on offer. They are constantly being improved and updated. So contact us, together we can find the best way to suit your particular interest and availability. Whether you’d like to attend regular meetings or just answer occasional email surveys, there are ways you can be involved that suit you.
Whilst you get involved, you will not be out of pocket as we will reimburse all reasonable expenses.
Time Commitment: 2 – 3 hours every other month
The Forum meets every other month to discuss a wide variety of topics. At each meeting two workshops take place where attendees are kept informed of the latest developments from a particular service area.
Attendees are then asked to ‘vote’ and give their feedback on a particular question or decision.
The Performance panel provides a way for customers to challenge Derwent Living to improve performance across the organisation. It meets once a quarter directly after The Forum meeting.
The aim of the Performance Panel is to take a central role in setting standards and ensuring that services are constantly being improved.
Customer commitments allow you to see exactly how Derwent Living is performing in the area where you live. As well as finding out if you’re getting the best level of service, you can also compare against the other areas in which we operate. These are the services that customers have told us are the most important to them.
You are able to review and challenge our performance against the Customer Commitments at our quarterly Performance Panel meetings.
Time Commitment Dependent on the group 1 to 2 hours a month
Residents group are formed in local areas and work in partnership with Derwent Living. These groups hold a number of meetings a year including an Annual General Meeting (AGM) and carry out a variety of working including campaigning for local improvements and organising social events. Derwent Living can support you in joining a local group or starting your own. (Full Training and support can be given)
Sheltered housing forum
Time Commitment 2 to 3 Hours every 4 months
The forum is open to residents living in retirement housing. The forum looks a specific issues around retirement living and its customers. The forum also organises some social activities and outings.
Home ownership forum
Time Commitment 2 to 3 Hours every 4 months
The forum is open to customers who own all or part of their home and who pay a service charge. This includes leaseholders, shared owners and right to buys.
The forum looks at ways to improve services for customers while maintaining service charges that provide value for money. The forum also provides opportunities to share information and develop strong relationships between customers and Derwent Living.
Derwent Living editorial panel
Time commitment is 2 – 3 hours every 3 months
Membership is open to all customers and looks specifically at the Derwent Life newsletter. The group meets at our head office to review each edition, commenting on the content and design as well as planning and agreeing articles and themes for future editions.
Time Commitment: 20 – 30 Mins
Derwent Living conduct a range of surveys on an ad hoc basis. The surveys may be specific to a particular service area and are your opportunity to give your feedback on the service that you have received.
Using surveys and questionnaires we can see if our customers are satisfied with the services we provide, and where necessary identify areas for improvement.
Surveys may take the form of postal, telephone, email or text. Therefore it is important that we have your up to date contact details. If you change any of your details please let us know so that we can up date our records.
Community volunteer team
Time commitment can vary depending upon the customer choice and area of the business being looked at.
The Community Volunteer Team inspects housing schemes other than their own to assess areas such as landscaping and cleaning services also void property standards. (Full Training and support can be given)
Time commitment 1 to 2 hours on an ad hoc basic when required.
This panel is for customers who what to be involved but are short on time or do not like to travel around. The panel reviews and checks documents ensure that they are customer friendly and easy to understand.
Time commitment Hours will vary depending on the course.
Derwent living is dedicated to providing a wide range of training opportunities for its customers. Along side training provide for Derwent Livings panel and forums it also offers courses in thing such as Getting your message across , how’s and whys of policy , involving everyone and residents involvement pulling it together. In addition we can also source training from other providers and arrange one –to-one coaching and mentoring. Please contact the team for a full picture of the training and practical learning programme.
Time commitment 2 to 3 Hours per month.
Derwent Living’s Board meets on a regular basis to monitor and review service performance and plan new services and the group’s strategy.
As a Board member you will make an important contribution whilst gaining valuable business experiences. Full Training and support will be given.
Service spot checkers
Time Commitment: 2 – 3 hours on an ad hoc basis
A group of customer volunteers that meet on an as required basis, who contact other customers to gain their feedback and satisfaction on services provided by Derwent Living.
Results are then presented to heads of service and recommendations for improvement are made. The customer volunteers also ensure their findings match the satisfaction information that we are publishing.
Full training is provided for this role.
Time Commitment 2 days per month
The resident scrutiny team is a skilled and dedicated group of residents who analyse and monitor our services. The team monitors performance to ensure that objectives are met, services are shaped around the needs of our residents and to hold Derwent Living to account for weakness in service delivery when needed.
Its recommendations are considered and acted upon by the board and executive team.
Full training is provided.
How you can be involved in making decisions
The types of decisions you can be involved in making fall into three areas:
- Strategic and policy decisions
- Tenure specific decisions
- Local area based decisions
Depending on your interests and preferences for involvement there are various ways in which you can help to influence and make decisions. They are open to all customers who wish to join.
Strategic and policy decisions
At Derwent living we aim to involve you at the heart of the decisions making process and on the issues that will have the greatest impact on all our customers.
As part of their role the many of our forums and panels look at and make decisions on Derwent’s strategies and polices, affecting the services received by all our customers and the future direction of the business.
Tenure specific decisions
Some of the decisions that you can make may affect a particular group or tenure such as leaseholders for example. If you want to be involved in making decisions relating to your tenure group or service area there are options for involvement.
Local area based decisions
Often customers feel that the most important decisions they can make are those that directly affect their neighbourhood. To influence the decisions that are made at a local level there are involvement options available, some of these will vary between areas.
We not only want to hear what you have to say we want you to help drive change.
The Resident involvement strategy 2011-2014 sets out our approach to involvement.
Code of conduct
This code of conduct operates at all meetings and events for Derwent Living customers. We want to ensure that everyone feels comfortable taking part and that we are able to conduct business in a courteous and effective way.
- Members shall listen to the views of others and respect their views and opinions.
- Members will show due respect to other members and staff
- Members will play an active role but not monopolise a meeting
- No discriminatory remarks will be accepted and should not be made.
- No abusive or offensive language will be used.
- No personal remarks will be made.
- At meetings members will speak one at a time when indicated by the Chair.
- A member contravening the code of conduct may be excluded.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is Resident Involvement?
Resident Involvement is your opportunity to have a say and influence decisions that affect your homes, the services you receive and the area in which you live.Through Resident Involvement we can ensure that customers are at the heart of our decision making process, and with your feedback understand the needs of our customers, whilst continually striving to improve services and satisfaction.Through our wide range of involvement initiatives we want to ensure that all customers have equal access and opportunity to be able to get involved and have their say.
- I would like to get involved but attending meetings isn’t always right for me, what else is available?
Derwent Living have a range of methods for our customers to be able to have their say. As well as holding meetings we carry out consultation through email and text surveys, in addition to postal surveys or those done over the phone.We are also looking at ways of creating more opportunities for e-involvement such as online discussion forums and polls.If this sounds like something that you would be interested in, just make sure we have your up to date contact details such as phone number and email address.
- An upcoming meeting is out of my area but I’d really like to come along, I don’t have my own transport is there any alternative?
We want to make our initiatives and events accessible to everyone, therefore we can provide transport where required – and also cover travel expenses for customers who do have their own transport, or make use of public transport.Our expenses policy can be found here, which also covers information regarding child care costs
- I’d like to get involved but can’t commit all the time, is there anything else I can do?
Derwent Living understand that our customers lead busy lives with many other commitments, but we also know that it is important to you to be able to have your say.Therefore, we can work with you to find an initiative that is right for you. The Forum is a meeting that takes place every other month and customers can attend as and when they wish. There is no membership, meaning that customers are not relied upon to heavily commit.You can also take part in occasional questionnaires or surveys to give us your feedback on topics specific to particular service areas. Your views and opinions help shape services and drive improvement.
- How can I find out more about becoming involved?
Take a look at the various information on offer within the ‘Get Involved’ section of the website. This area gives an overview of the type of opportunities available. You can also contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling us on 01332 346477 and asking to speak to a member of the Resident Involvement Team, if you wish to find out more.