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Housing Adaptations Conference 2011

New challenges and new opportunities in adaptations delivery Wednesday 18th May 2011, York Racecourse

The rapidly changing policy landscape presents both challenges and opportunities for the delivery of housing adaptations services. Rising demand and increased pressure on budgets and funding means that there is a need for providers to think creatively and innovatively in their approach to providing adaptations. Working with a range of partners and considering a range of delivery solutions, as well as reducing delivery times and achieving cost savings, are fundamental to designing effective services that enable more people to live independently for longer. Proving the case for investment in adaptations is increasingly important. Whilst there is a growing body of evidence demonstrating an accessible, adapted home can make a significant contribution to improving quality of life, there is still a need to demonstrate that there are positive outcomes that produce savings to other budgets and build a case for attracting extra investment. This annual adaptations conference has quickly established itself as the event for all those working in the adaptations field. It will provide a valuable opportunity for practitioners and strategic housing and health professionals to consider how to prove the case for adaptations, and will explore the latest thinking and approaches to deliver fast, efficient and effective adaptations services. We will also showcase the winners of the Designed for Life competition, run in conjunction with Northumbria University. By attending this conference delegates will: • Learn about value for money approaches and streamlined processes for delivery • Hear examples of best practice and innovative services • Find out about effective local agreements with social landlords • Learn how to make these local agreements work in practice • Hear about alternative funding for adaptations • Learn about the importance of high quality design to enhance wellbeing • Understand the business case for adaptations - saving money for other service areas • Find out about the role of Telecare in meeting need The established adaptations exhibition will also allow delegates to interact with a range of suppliers.

Who should attend? This conference is aimed at those with responsibility for supporting people to live independently, for disabled adaptations and provision of equipment, including: Heads of Housing, Private Sector Housing Managers, Housing and Policy Officers, Occupational Therapists, Housing Grants Officers, Elderly Services Managers, Strategic Older Persons Managers, Community Health Managers, Home Improvement Officers, Special Needs Officers, Housing Care Services Managers, Maintenance Managers, Adaptations Coordinators and Business Service Managers. Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Delegates will be able to record 4 Continuing Professional Development hours for attending this conference.

Programme 9.30

Registration, refreshments and exhibition viewing


Chair’s introduction and welcome Paul Gamble, Chief Executive, Habinteg Housing Association


Latest policy thinking explained Joe Oldman, Housing Policy Adviser, Age UK and Member, Home Adaptations Consortium This opening session will provide an overview of the latest policy and thinking relating to the adaptations agenda, including: • Context of the needs of the older age population; • Drivers and emerging policy for supporting people to live independently at home; • Working with the third sector and care and health agencies in delivering adaptations.


The new agenda for public health: new opportunities in housing adaptations Domini Gunn, Director of Public Health and Vulnerable Communities, Chartered Institute of Housing In this session Domini will explore the new arrangements planned for public health and what these will mean for those delivering housing adaptations interventions, including the: • Implications of the new arrangements for commissioning services to deliver health outcomes. • Health and Wellbeing Boards and how housing providers can influence and shape the way they operate to strengthen local health outcomes.


Professional practice sessions 1. The secret lives of people with dementia - supporting individuals with memory problems Celia Price, Director, Just Checking Dave Wood, Housing Account Director, Tunstall Group This workshop will use case studies to demonstrate: • How housing providers can use ‘activity monitoring’ to understand more about tenants with memory problems or learning disabilities. • How to target effective adaptations and telecare. 2. Opportunities from equity release schemes Chris Houghton, Partnership Manager, The Home Improvement Trust Equity release schemes offer opportunities to fund home improvements and adaptations that allow people to remain independent in their own homes. In this session Chris will: • Explain the approach of The Home Improvement Trust, which helps home owners and long term leaseholders aged over sixty to access safe equity release loans in order that repairs, improvements and adaptations can be carried out. • Look at how the Trust works with home owners and their families, and with other partners including local authorities. • Highlight examples of successful outcomes.

3. Streamlining adaptations delivery: The Knowsley Centre for Independent Living Graham Keeling, Commissioning Manager, Knowsley Health and Wellbeing In Knowsley the majority of adaptations cases are now completed within 3 days of first contact. In this session Graham will explain how the Centre for Independent Living: • Streamlines the provision of minor adaptations and equipment to reduce service costs. • Reduces demand on Occupational Therapy services and speeds up delivery. 4. Maximising access to adapted properties David Lockwood, Housing Standard and Improvement Manager, Walsall Council Walsall Council have implemented a range of initiatives to maximise access to adapted dwellings. In this session David will explain the Councils approach to: • Streamlining Disabled Facility Grants - getting more for less and faster, covering the lessons learned and a tool-kit for practical improvement. • Preventative adaptations – how providing help earlier through a flexible approach prevents higher future costs. • Adapted Housing Registers and accessing new build – how prioritisation provides corporate benefits. • Supporting independence – how collaborative working yields the greatest gains. 12. 40

Lunch and exhibition viewing (including shortlisted entrants to the Designed for Life competition)


Sub plenary sessions SP1. The future role of Home Improvement Agencies in adaptations delivery Malcolm Ramsay, Policy and Research Manager, Foundations The coming years will present both challenges and opportunities for the Home Improvement Agency (HIA) sector. In this session Malcolm will: • Explore the implications of the changing policy landscape for HIAs and consider future options for funding adaptations, including evidence of agencies mounting successful bids for re-ablement funding. • Share the outcome of a recent Foundations survey of HIAs on Disabled Facilities Grants and highlight examples of new and innovative developments. SP2. Working in partnership to meet care needs Judy Peaker, Chief Executive, Willow Housing and Care Partnership working between housing providers, healthcare agencies and local authorities can ensure appropriate support is provided to make a real difference to the lives of vulnerable older people. Willow Housing and Care is a unique community-based housing association. Specialising in providing housing and services tailored to the needs and aspirations of older people they have been recognised for developing innovative

approaches through working in partnership. In this session Judy will describe the approach of the organisation in: • Co-ordinating the input of agencies to enable older people to live independently in the community after they leave hospital, helping to tackle the problem of delayed hospital discharge and to reduce re-admissions. • Taking a holistic housing-led approach to service provision that delivers real cost benefits to health and social care agencies. 14.30

Professional practice sessions 5. Customer focused process improvement Marie McDonald, Housing Investment Manager, Newcastle City Council Julia Lavender, Occupational Therapy Manager, Newcastle City Council Process improvement, with meeting customer need at the heart of the approach, has resulted in substantial improvements to the speed at which housing adaptations are delivered by Newcastle City Council, yielding significant efficiencies. In this session Marie will explain: • How a ‘lean thinking’ process works – the approach made simple. • What steps are needed to initiate and effectively deliver improved processes working with partners. • How effective procurement will support the process. 6. Inclusive design in adaptations and the Designed for Life Competition Sue Lewis, Head of Supported Housing Services, Pennine Housing 2000 Alison Wright, Managing Director, Easy Living Home David O’Leary, Senior Lecturer, University of Northumbria Mainstreaming inclusive design is a challenge that many providers of housing adaptations are taking up. This session will cover: • Experience from applying the principles of inclusive design in practice when designing schemes and the adaptations themselves. • The approach, challenges and results of the Designed for Life inclusive design competition for adaptations from their perspective as members of the Northern Housing Consortium’s Expert Reference Group for the Competition. 7. Making local agreements work Sheila Mackintosh, Mackintosh O'Connor Associates Ltd This session will explore outcomes and learning from work Sheila has undertaken on local agreements between local authorities and Registered Providers with differing geographies - an urban area, a county authority and a London borough - drawing on: • Comparisons about the differing challenges, how to meet them and how to make agreements work in practice. • Reflections about the budgets that Registered Providers should hold in relation to the size of their stock, and why and how adaptations budgets could be preserved or increased at a time of financial cutbacks.

Conclusions about the benefits that agreements bring in terms of improved customer services, better procurement and value for money.

8. Joining up services: a case study Shonna Hildersley, Lettings Manager, New Charter Housing Trust Group The achievements of Shonna and her colleagues in providing intensive support to a disabled woman to help her move from bed blocking in hospital to an adapted dwelling was featured on BBC TVs Neighbourhood Watched in March. Shonna will explain: • The circumstances of the case. • How all the providers of healthcare and support worked together to produce an effective outcome that supports independent living. • Lessons learned for housing providers in working with partner agencies. 15.30 Refreshments and exhibition viewing 15.50 Award of the Designed for Life competition winner The winner of the Northern Housing Consortiums Designed for Life Competition will receive their award from Wayne Hemingway. The value of design in housing and beyond Wayne Hemingway, Hemingway Design In this closing session Wayne will make the case for retaining the focus on delivering high quality design, particularly in times when financial constraints are tight. The session will explore the vital role that good design can play in enhancing our lives and wellbeing. 16.25

Chair’s closing remarks


Close of conference

Housing Adaptations Conference 2011

New challenges and new opportunities in adaptations delivery Wednesday 18th May 2011, York Racecourse Delegate fees

Early booking discount: book before 26th April 2011

Northern Housing Consortium Member



Non Member


£229 All delegate fees are shown excluding VAT.

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0191 566 1000 Please note any telephone reservations are made on a provisional basis and must be confirmed in writing within 2 working days.

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Download a copy of the programme here

Adaptations Conference 2011 Full Programme  

Adaptations Conference 2011 Full Programme