Award for housing partnership

DGHPs Community Participation Officer, Gordon Williamson, and DGHP tenant Dorothy Grant, pictured receiving the gold award from TPAS.

DGHPs Community Participation Officer, Gordon Williamson, and DGHP tenant Dorothy Grant, pictured receiving the gold award from TPAS.

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Dumfries and Galloway Partnership (DGHP) has successfully achieved the gold standard of Tenant Participation Advisory Service (TPAS) accreditation.

The prestigious national award recognises excellence in involving tenants and other customers in the delivery of housing services.

In late November, DGHP tenant Dorothy Grant and Community Participation Officer, Gordon Williamson, picked up the award at the TPAS annual conference.

They were presented with the award by TV personality Sean Batty and Chief Executive of TPAS, Lesley Baird.

Speaking after the award ceremony, Lesley said: “We’re delighted to award our highest grade of accreditation to DGHP.

“DGHP has always fully embraced tenant participation and continues to live up to its’ reputation as one of the leaders in the country. We know how hard tenants and staff work together to deliver the best possible housing services.

“We have seen tenants involved in a range of activities, influencing decisions and scrutinising performance of DGHP’s services.

“We hope that this award recognises those achievements.”

DGHP Chairman David McMillan said: “We are absolutely delighted to receive the gold accreditation from TPAS and to be recognised as leaders in terms of tenant participation.”

To achieve the gold level of accreditation, DGHP had to demonstrate how it meets 10 standards that TPAS has identified as keystones of meaningful tenant involvement.

DGHP’s Community Participation Manager completed a self-assessment and submitted supporting documentation, which was followed up by interviews with staff, tenants and other residents.

The award was then validated by an independent panel of participation experts. The TPAS assessment highlighted the range of choices for tenants to get involved at all levels as a particular strength of DGHP.

Four tenant District Management Committees (DMCs) monitor performance and make recommendations to the Board of Management on how services should be delivered. DGHP also has a trained Tenant Scrutiny Panel which carries out in-depth inspections of housing services, whilst a range of working groups allow tenants and staff to work together to plan activities such as tenant events and production of the tenant newsletter.

In addition to its own structures, DGHP also supports and works alongside the independent tenant movement in Dumfries and Galloway. It works closely with the Federation of Tenants and Residents and a network of individual tenants and residents associations across the region. This is the beating heart of community involvement and its work with DGHP has led to several improvements in housing services.

Mary Muir, Chair of the Dumfries and Galloway Federation of Tenants and Residents Association, said: “We are delighted that DGHP has been recognised nationally for the work they do with tenants. We, as an independent group of tenants and residents across Dumfries and Galloway work with DGHP on a regular basis and this is recognition of everyone’s work for tenants of DGHP. Tenants really do have a voice with DGHP.”

DGHP Chairman Mr McMillan added: “TPAS are a nationwide organisation promoting effective relationships between tenants and landlords and for them to award DGHP the highest accolade is testament to the hard work and effort of tenants across the region who work with us on a regular basis.

“We are very fortunate as a company to have so many tenants who want to be involved with us as their landlord and who continuously work with us to shape the future services and delivery.

“Through the development and delivery of DGHP’s Community Participation Strategy tenants have a chance to have a real input into what happens in their areas and to feed into the various services that affect tenants on a daily basis.”