As chair of the Sanctuary Housing’s National Resident Scrutiny Panel, Wendy Burridge says she feels fortunate to be able to make a positive impact on the services offered by Sanctuary across the country.
Paignton-based Wendy has been a Sanctuary resident since 2009 and works with others to ensure services are continually reviewed and improved.
The scrutiny panel, which comprises residents from different backgrounds and with a range of experiences, meets with Sanctuary directors and senior staff four times a year to assess standards.
Talking about her role to mark Housing Day 2018, Wendy’s work with the panel is even more pertinent as the theme for this year is ‘the tenant voice’, something that is hugely important in making sure services are the best they can be.
Wendy said: “I’m very lucky to be able to chair the National Resident Scrutiny Panel. With the support of more than 400 other residents, we’re closely involved in helping to shape and improve our services, so I’m hugely grateful to everyone involved.”
Among the success stories for the panel has been the work to make sure Sanctuary’s neighbourhoods are well maintained, with residents carrying out nearly 300 estate inspections between April 2017 and March 2018.
“These are really important to identify the condition of the estate and agree on actions to make improvements where necessary,” Wendy explained. “I took part in my area and it was a great example of how residents and staff work together to better the local environment.”
On another occasion, the efficiency of Sanctuary’s national Customer Service Centre was put under the spotlight by the panel.
Wendy said: “Recently, about 50 residents were involved in reviewing calls to our repairs call centre in Hull and how well they’re dealt with.
“The feedback from residents was that the quality of customer service was very good, but there were some points raised about how waiting times could be improved which is being looked at.”
But despite all of their efforts, there is lots more they would like to do and Wendy is urging as many residents as possible to sign up to make sure their voice is heard.
She said: “We’re always keen to hear from new residents who are interested in being involved and support the work of local resident associations.”
To find out more about joining or starting your own residents’ association, visit our how to get involved page.