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During the Holiday Season...

...it’s the little things that matter 3

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What Swan can do for you this winter

Benefits team change lives

New Community Centres open

No excuse for domestic abuse

Swan resident wins volunteer award

WWW.SWAN.ORG.UK

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WINTER 2016

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WWW.WEB4RESIDENTS.ORG.UK


THE COMMUNICATOR PAGES 1/2

Welcome Welcome to the Winter edition of your Communicator newsletter. The holidays are a time of being together and at Swan we were delighted to be able to open two brand new Community Facilities at our newest developments, Beechwood in Basildon and Blackwall Reach in Poplar. See our centre page spread to find out more about these great new community spaces, which will be a great resource in bringing our communities together! They are available for hire and our Resident Involvement Team are keen for residents to use these and our other community halls. This time of year can bring its own financial challenges, so if you are worried about your money; our Welfare Benefits Team are here to help. Find out what a difference they can make in the case study on page 6. It can also be a time when many people feel particularly lonely – this year, is there someone you could reach out to so they don’t feel isolated in the Winter months? See page 4 for more details.

Contributors Sandra Fawcett Executive Director Operations Andrea O’Callaghan Head of Business Improvement and Allocations Deena Greenland Service Improvement Co-Ordinator Anna Williams Housing Diversity Manager Daniel Richards Welfare Benefits Officer

Your next Communicator will be delivered to you in Spring 2017, so, if you have any comments or suggestions please call the Communications Team on 01277 844770 or email us at: communicationsteam@swan.org.uk

Jennifer Spencer-Charles, Editor

If you’d like to learn more about getting involved at any time, please call the Resident Involvement and Community Development Team on 01277 844242 or email involvement@ swan.org.uk Or Text INVOLVE to 07860 021752


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What a wonderful year we’ve had! Seasons’ Greetings and Best Wishes for 2017 to all of our residents

A reminder that our offices will be closed from close of business Friday 23 December to Tuesday 3 January 2017 ... . .. .. . .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . . . .. .. .. .... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... ..... ..... ..... ... . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . ..........

If an emergency arises during the seasonal office closures, residents can call the following telephone numbers to report an emergency: Repairs Emergency: 0800 783 2768 Anti-Social Behaviour Emergency: 0800 075 6699 National Domestic Violence Helpline: 0808 2000 247


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What Swan can do for you this Winter Keeping our estates clear and safe this winter .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

As winter sets in, it gets colder, darker, icy and occasionally snowy. Swan’s Estate Services Team work hard, clearing roads and paths around our estates, spreading grit wherever possible. The team focuses on making sure there is a clear and safe path from the entrance of the blocks they service to the car park or public highway. If you spot an area that needs gritting on one of our Estates, contact our Estates Service Team on 0300 303 2500.

...................................................................................... Stopping you from feeling snowed under .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

Did you know that the average Briton spends £500 each Christmas on gifts for their loved ones?

During the Christmas Season it becomes very easy to feel pressured into spending more than you can

afford and in some cases, not leaving yourself with enough money for essentials such as rent payments. If you are struggling to pay your rent please don’t ignore the problem and make things worse. Swan relies on the rent money you pay to provide services to all residents including repairs and general maintenance, estate management and tackling Anti-Social Behaviour. If you are struggling to make payments we want to talk to you and help you to find solutions as soon as possible. Your home is at risk if you don’t keep up with your

rental payments; last year some households were evicted as they left it too late to get help. Swan offices are closed over the Christmas period but you can still make payments in other ways including by Direct Debit and through the All Pay app, which allows you to pay your rent using your smartphone. Visit www.swan.org.uk to find out more. Read our Case Study on the help our Welfare Team gave to one of our residents on page 6


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What you can do for your community Don’t let people be alone this Winter .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . . . .. . . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. ..... ......... ..

Did you know that around 1 million older people regularly go an entire month without speaking to anyone? During the long winter months feelings of loneliness and isolation can become worse as shops and services close and cold weather keeps people indoors.

Why not help your neighbours or vulnerable people in your community break the isolation? Visit www.web4 residents.org.uk for more information on Befriending Services in your area and tips on how you can help.

.......................................... .......................................... A bag of shopping goes a long way

Room at your table?

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During seasonal festivities, family and friends make Volunteering an effort to spend quality time together. However, in your community there are still many makes a huge difference. people that spend this See how resident Carol time alone. Franklin won the ‘Inspirational Role Model’ award at the Do you have a spare chair Basildon Volunteer Awards at your table? Why not for her help in the invite a lonely neighbour to community on page dinner as you celebrate 14 and share the season’s joy.

As it gets colder and darker during the winter months, older residents or those with young children can find it harder to get out of the house, to do everyday tasks such as picking up some milk or the paper.

If you are popping down to the local shops or supermarket, why not see if one of your neighbours could do with a helping hand, by picking up a couple of essentials for them?


THE COMMUNICATOR PAGES 5/6

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Are your white goods safe? Advice from the London Fire Brigade .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

London Fire Commissioner Ron Dobson said:

“If your appliance is subject to a safety or recall notice or you think there’s something wrong with it our advice is simple. Unplug it immediately and contact the manufacturer or a qualified repair technician.”

The London Fire Brigade (LFB) have issued a warning to tumble dryer owners following the recent fire in Shepherd’s Bush. Figures show that

To find out if your tumble dryer is subject to a product recall or safety notice visit www.electricalsafety first.org.uk. If it is, the LFB’s advice is to stop using it immediately.

the LFB attend nearly one fire a day involving white goods such as; dishwashers, washing machines, tumble dryers, fridges and freezers.

...................................................................................... Make yourself safer .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

• Check your appliances haven’t been recalled • If your white goods start making a strange noise, don’t ignore it. If you suspect there might be a problem, always unplug it and contact the manufacturer or a qualified repair technician. • Register your appliance today to reduce fire risk at www.registermy appliance.org.uk.

The ‘register my appliance’ website, produced by the Association of Manufacturers of Domestic Appliances, provides quick and easy access to the registration pages of 62 leading brands.

To find out more information about Appliance Safety visit the London Fire Brigade Website www.london-fire.gov.uk


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Swan’s Welfare Benefits team change lives Could they help you? .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . . . .. . . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. ..... ......... ..

Swan’s Welfare Benefits team are here to support you. They really do make a difference. Here is just one case study which shows how effective their support can be... .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . . . .. . . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. ..... ......... ..

When the team started with Sam*, an unemployed young woman, living alone in a one bedroom flat in Southend, Sam was behind on her rent and was struggling each month to pay her balance.

Sam was over the moon with the help provided and couldn’t thank the Welfare Benefits team enough when she contacted our office.

Daniel, Swan’s Welfare Benefits Officer, took the time to go and see Sam at home. He assessed her situation and helped her apply for a lump sum Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP). Sam’s application was successful and she was awarded £1,600, which was enough to clear her rent arrears. Sam was also awarded additional weekly DHPs to help cover her rent and also Exceptional Hardship Payments which pays for her Council Tax. Daniel also worked with Sam to help her look at her employment options and advised her on how to look and apply for work locally. Sam used this new knowledge to apply for work and now has a part time job.

Income Team working outside office hours! Our Income and Welfare Benefits team have been working during the evenings and on Saturdays to support residents with their rent payments. They are doing this out of hours work because they recognise that many of our residents are working hard during our office hours. If you would like the team to contact you outside office hours to discuss your rent or general finances give them a call on 0300 303 2500 and they will be happy to help! So, if you are struggling with your finances, don’t think you have to manage on your own. Call the Welfare Benefits team to find out how they can help.

Daniel said:

“When a tenant says thank you to me for helping them, I get great satisfaction knowing I’ve made a difference in their life. I find that helpfulness leads you to happiness and I am delighted that Sam’s been able to use my advice to make a real difference to her life.” *not her real name

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My Work Search - Helping you find the right job Swan have partnered with “My Work Search”, an online job search tool which is full of hints and tips and might just help you find a job that suits your skills and aspirations. This clever tool scans over 1 million vacancies and even automatically keeps your JobCentre Plus advisor informed. To get started, you simply need to register your interest and you will receive a personalised log-in and password. To find out more contact the Resident Involvement and Community Development Team on 01277 844 242 or email involvement@swan.og.uk.


THE COMMUNICATOR PAGES 7/8

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Foyer residents visit Houses of Parliament .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

Nine of our Foyer residents from our three Foyers in Basildon and Havering were invited on a tour of the Houses of Parliament by Stephen Metcalfe, Member of Parliament for South Basildon and East Thurrock, following his recent visit to Swan House Foyer in Basildon. Arriving at the historic St Stephen's entrance, the residents were treated to a

tour of the celebrated building including the House of Lords and the House of Commons. Taking the opportunity to ask questions along the way, they discovered the role Parliament and democracy has played in the history of our country, whilst learning about the traditions of the State Opening of Parliament and the Monarchs who had walked the same halls and corridors.

Foyer resident Nkosinathi Ogundiya said:

“It was a great day! To learn about the origins of democracy in the UK has given me a real appreciation for it. I found out that not only can you come and talk directly to your MP here; you can also watch the House of Commons sessions,which I will definitely be coming back again to watch.”

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Romford School children get interactive Health& Safety lesson from ‘Ivor Goodsite’ .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

Over 170 youngsters were given a lesson in how to stay safe around construction sites, when celebrity builder and industry mascot ‘Ivor Goodsite’ popped into Crowlands Primary School in Romford. Speaking to the children from years 5 and 6, the seven foot tall mascot spoke with the children about the importance of staying safe around building sites. They were also treated to games including; “Spot the Hazard”, crosswords, word searches and other puzzles, but the most fun was had joining in with Ivor, dressing up in hard hats and heavy boots.

Geoff Pearce, Swan's Executive Director Regeneration and Development said:

“The children clearly had a wonderful time meeting Ivor and learning about health and safety. Swan is proud to play its part, making sure we take a responsible role in protecting both our residents and the wider community around our sites. We are grateful to Crowlands Primary School for allowing us to host the event”.


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Don’t get caught out by the scammers A few tips to keep you protected .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . . . .. . . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. ..... ......... ..

During the Winter season there are lots of different people knocking on doors in your neighbourhood delivering parcels.

3. Never give out your bank details: If someone calls asking for your bank details do not give them to anyone unless you know they are genuine. Remember banks do not ask for your pin number.

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1. Always ask for identification: Check it carefully and if you’re not sure, ask the caller to come back another day.

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Most people who call at your home will be genuine but it’s important to be on your guard. You also need to be alert for telephone and email fraudsters who try to steal money in a number of different ways. DONT GET CAUGHT:

2. Not sure? Shut the door: Don’t be pressured into letting someone into your home if you have suspicions.

4. If in doubt, check them out: Just because a caller says they are acting on behalf of Swan, or another company, it does not necessarily mean they are. If you are in any doubt ask them to leave and call the company to see if they sent someone. If the caller does not leave or you feel threatened, call the Police on 999.

Lift repairs and notices We are aware of some issues in obtaining parts to some of our lifts which has resulted in some repairs taking longer than we would have liked. We are committed to improving this and have listened to feedback from residents. We have now reviewed our lift service and are working with two specialist contractors – Kone and Schindler. This should speed up the process of obtaining lift parts and improve the service to residents. Look out for the updates in your lift or on the noticeboard.

Alerting residents If you notice a problem with your lift contact Axis on 0800 783 2768 who will coordinate the repair.


THE COMMUNICATOR PAGES 9/10

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Swan and Beechwood Village Regeneration partners celebrate the opening of The Beech Community Centre .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . ........ ....... ..

Swan Housing Group, in partnership with BasildonBorough Council and the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA), celebrated the grand opening of The Beech Community Centre. The new community facility in Beechwood, Swan’s large scale regeneration of the Craylands estate in Basildon, was officially opened by Cllr Phil Turner, Leader of Basildon Borough

Council. The Beech Community Centre is a fantastic facility with a large multi-purpose space and a modern kitchen. The opening of the new community centre is a fundamental part of the regeneration project which, when complete, will transform the Craylands estate. The centre will be managed by the Community Development Team at Swan, but activities and hiring of the hall have been developed around local need and consultation. Initial projects due to be delivered from the centre include a community art project, youth activities, residents meetings, healthy eating sessions, employment and training programmes and exercise sessions.

Sandra Fawcett, Executive Director – Operations at Swan said:

“We’re delighted to mark the official opening of The Beech Community Centre which we hope will become a focal point for local residents

and the wider community. Swan is proud to be working closely with Basildon Borough Council and the Homes and Communities Agency to deliver high quality housing and community facilities.”


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Swan and Blackwall Reach Regeneration partners celebrate the opening of The Reach Community Hub .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . . . .. . . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. ..... ......... ..

The Blackwall Reach development partners, local residents and community groups celebrated the grand opening of The Reach Community Hub. Officially opened by John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets, The Reach is a fantastic Community Hub spread across two floors, featuring a main hall, three smaller rooms and a teaching kitchen.

The Reach will play an integral part in improving residents’ access to local services and improve their quality of life and will also be available to hire for corporate and community events. John Biggs, Mayor of Tower Hamlets said:

“I’m delighted to officially open the new Blackwall Reach Community Hub. This fantastic new centre provides an excellent location for current and future residents of all ages to come together socially, but also to access courses, activities and opportunities to gain new skills.”


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No excuse for domestic abuse Domestic violence and abuse can happen to absolutely anyone .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . .. . . . .. . ..

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An estimated 1 in 4 women and 1 in 6 men across the UK experience domestic abuse. The first step is to recognise that they are in an abusive relationship. Domestic violence and abuse may be happening right now to someone you know. It may even be happening to you without you realising, especially if the abuse is psychological, emotional or financial rather than physical.

When we think of domestic abuse we often focus on physical violence but domestic abuse occurs whenever a person tries to dominate or control a current or ex-partner or family member, regardless of whether they live with them or not. Domestic abuse often escalates from threats and verbal abuse to physical violence (especially if the abuser feels that they are losing control) and, while physical injury may be the most obvious danger, the emotional and psychological consequences of domestic

abuse are also severe. Emotionally abusive relationships can destroy self-worth, lead to anxiety and depression and make people feel helpless and alone.

Spot abuse Who: Anyone can be an abuser. Abusers are often very charming and include ‘respected members of the community’. Abusers use threats, fear, guilt, shame, intimidation and mind games to gain and maintain control and to make the victim / survivor think it’s their fault. It is not. Abusers also often make excuses for their behaviour, claiming that they ‘lost their temper’ due to stress, alcohol or substance abuse. This is not true. Abusers choose to abuse.

Types of abuse Emotional/Psychological abuse: This can include put-downs, verbal abuse and humiliation, blaming and isolation from family and friends. Financial abuse: This can include not being allowed to have money or a job and having to account for all money spent.

Work in the Community We met some lovely people from Safer Places (08450 177 668 www.safer places.co.uk) at Essex Pride in July! They provide services (including refuge accommodation) to adults and children affected by domestic and sexual abuse in Essex. In October Hestia - the largest provider of domestic abuse refuges for women and children in London attended the launch of The Reach, our new community hub at Blackwall Reach in Tower Hamlets. They said “The event went brilliantly and Hestia’s Tower Hamlets Domestic Violence Team

were fortunate enough to speak to the Mayor of Tower Hamlets, John Biggs, about the “UK SAYS NO MORE CAMPAIGN”. This is a national campaign to raise awareness to end domestic violence and sexual assault. For more information please see www.uk saysnomore.org you can also contact Hestia: 0207 3783100 info@hestia.org For more information about domestic abuse and what we and our partners are doing to tackle it you can follow us on Twitter: @swan housing / @EandD_Swan


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Get help for you or someone you know .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . . . .. . . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. ..... ......... ..

The Police: Domestic violence and abuse is a crime and will be taken seriously. All police forces in the UK have specially trained officers who can help. Call 999 in an emergency. Non-emergency number: 101 (Essex Police dedicated domestic abuse nonemergency number: 0800 358 0351). The 24 hour National Domestic Violence Freephone Helpline: This is run by Women’s Aid and Refuge. Call for help and women’s refuge accommodation on 0808 2000 247 www.nationaldomestic violencehelpline.org.uk Mens Advice Line: Advice and support for men experiencing domestic violence and abuse. Call 0808 801 0327 www.mens adviceline.org.uk GALOP: LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans) domestic violence charity. Call 0300 999 5428 www.galop.org.uk Changing Pathways: A domestic abuse charity for women and men that works across the areas of Basildon, Brentwood, Castlepoint and Thurrock. Call 01268 729707 www.changingpathways.org

Forced Marriage, Female Genital Mutilation and so-called Honour-Based Violence: Forced Marriage Unit: 020 7008 0151 www.gov.uk/stop-forcedmarriage Karma Nirvana Honour Network Helpline: 0800 599 9247 www.karmanirvana.org.uk True Honour: 07480 621711 www.truehonour.org.uk NSPCC FGM (Female Genital Mutilation) Helpline: 0800 028 3550 www.nspcc.org.uk Neighbourhood Housing Officer / Supported Housing Officer: They can provide you with a copy of our Domestic Violence and Abuse Booklet for Swan residents and customers.

Advice for men seeking help to change their abusive behaviour: Respect Phoneline: 0808 802 4040 www.respect.uk.net Domestic Violence Intervention Project (London): 020 7633 9181 www.dvip.org Essex Change (Essex): 0845 372 2202 www.essexchange.org


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£300m Blackwall Reach regeneration Deputy Mayor of London celebrates ground breaking on latest phase .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

Swan Housing Association, the London Borough of Tower Hamlets (LBTH) and the Greater London Authority (GLA) celebrated work starting on Phase 1b, the latest phase of Swan’s exciting £300m regeneration project which will deliver over 1,500 new homes in Tower Hamlets of which half will be affordable. The scheme, which will be completed by 2026, also includes new community facilities, commercial units and improved access to Blackwall DLR through enhanced public realm.

James Murray, the Deputy Mayor for Housing and Residential Property at the GLA, formally marked the start of work at the event alongside Mayor of Tower Hamlets, John Biggs and John Synnuck, Chief Executive at Swan. John Synnuck said:

“At Swan we are committed to building exemplary homes and communities. We are proud to celebrate the ground breaking of Phase 1B of the Blackwall Reach

regeneration project which, when complete, will offer much needed high-quality homes for the borough as well as community space. Swan is proud to be working

closely with the London Borough of Tower Hamlets and the Greater London Authority to deliver housing in Tower Hamlets.”

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Swan and London Borough of Redbridge Launch of new housing development in Ilford .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

affordable rent flats (2-3 bed, some open plan and some with separate kitchens), and 105 shared ownership flats (1-2 beds, all open plan). 10% of units will be constructed to wheelchair adaptable standards.

Swan Housing Association, the Greater London Authority (GLA) and the London Borough of Redbridge celebrated work beginning on Swan’s

exciting new development ‘The Paragon’ in Ilford. This project, located near Ilford Station will provide 141 flats in total, comprising 36

Today's launch will see the start of groundworks and the development of the three residential blocks, the highest being 18 storeys. Further works, including the commercial units, which will house the Sales Suite, are planned for completion in Autumn 2017.

Cllr Farah Hussain, Redbridge Council Cabinet Member for Housing said:

“Providing affordable homes in the Borough is an important priority for us and key to building a sustainable future for Redbridge. We are very pleased that through our partnership with Swan Housing Association we will deliver a range of affordable homes to meet local housing need.”


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Swan resident wins at The Basildon Volunteer Awards .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ...

Supporting our localcommunities is key to our social purpose. This is why our Chief Executive, John Synnuck was delighted to attend the Basildon,Billericay and Wickford volunteer awards. The awards, organised by Basildon Borough Council gave John the opportunity to both present an award and support one of our own shortlisted residents.

Our own Ade Adelekan (Community Development Officer) nominated Carol Franklin, Chair of our Essex Resident Consultative Committee (RCC) and long standing involved resident for her work at the Steeple View Community Centre – transforming it into a fully refurbished, friendly and attractive centre, which is the hub of the Steeple View Estate. Carol scooped the Inspirational Role Model award for this work and her dedication to the local Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme,

the RCC and her work to help set up the Community

Kitchen Project which provides local older residents with hot meals and great

company for as little as £3. Congratulations to Carol!

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Direct Debit The quick and easy way to pay your rent .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . . . .. . . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .

Direct Debit is the most cost effective and easiest way to pay your household bills or make regular or occasional payments to organisations that accept Direct Debit payments.

What are the benefits of paying by Direct Debit?

Over 75% of adults in the UK have at least one Direct Debit and around 100,000 organisations use Direct Debit for collecting a variety of regular and occasional bills including rents, utility payments, repair charges, insurance, council tax, mortgages and loans.

• Convenient for residents as there is no need to phone or visit our office.

• Your Bank or Building Society does all the work and yet you remain in control.

• Once the Direct Debit is set up, the money is automatically paid on a set date each month and posted on your rent account – so you won’t miss your monthly payments

• Paying by direct debit helps Swan to reduce its costs, which it can reinvest in services to residents and in building more social housing. • You don’t have to worry about carrying cash, writing cheques or sorting out paperwork and postage. • If Swan or your Bank/ Building Society makes an error, you are guaranteed a full and immediate refund from your bank.

• You can cancel a Direct Debit at any time by contacting us on 0300 303 2500 or by contacting your Bank/ Building Society Set up a rent Direct Debit To set up your Direct Debit just call our Rent Team on 0300 3032500 Monday - Friday 9.00am to 5.15pm (5.00pm on Friday). All you need is the bank account details of the current account you wish to make the payments from.


THE COMMUNICATOR PAGES 15/16

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My BIG Idea... . . . .. . . . .. . . . .. .. ... . ... . ... .. .. ... . ... . ... .. .. ... . ... ... .. ..... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . ...... ......... .

Want to win £50 to spend in Argos? Tell us your Big Idea! We will award £50 in Argos vouchers for any ideas that we can use.

My Big Idea is... .....................................................................................................................................

So, tell us what you think about how we can:

Swan is always on the lookout for comments from residents suggesting how we can make our services better. Residents’ suggestions help us to improve our business. Your Big Idea may also be useful for us to share with other residents and help us to deliver the services you really want. If you have any suggestions or ideas don't delay - send them to us today!

1 2 3

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Improve services.

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Your name

Offer new services.

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Save money or reduce waste.

Address

All suggestions are considered by our Resident Consultative Committees. Any we implement will be published in The Communicator. Send us your idea by post using this form or online at web4residents.org.uk or swan.org.uk or by emailing Improvement@swan.org.uk

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Return your suggestion slip to: The Customer Feedback Co-ordinator, Swan Housing Association, FREEPOST ANG10361, Billericay CM12 9ZZ

...................................................................................... Why you should share your Big Idea with us! .. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ...

We really do want your ideas! As you receive our services and live on our estates, we know that you will all have ideas of how we can make things better. Please get in touch and tell us what you think. If your idea is implemented you will receive a £50 voucher! These ideas have been implemented already, as suggested by residents:

advice e iv g ld u ts “You sho ring plants in po te about wa g baskets and in and hang r.” ate ge l saving w t getting looking a a, we are ts as a trial. Great ide en t to resid packs ou

. .. . . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. . . ................

"Operatives caught no t wearing shoe covers in reside nts' homes should be fined". This is a good impro vement and our team are working with our Repa irs Partner Axis, to implement this.


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Performance Corner - How are we doing? March 2016 to September 2016 .. .... ... .. .. . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . .. .. .. .. .. . . . .. .. .. ... ..... ...... ..... ..... ...... ..... ..... .. ..... ..... ... . . . .. . . . .. . . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. . . .. . . . . .. . .. . . . . .. ..... ......... ..

Stage 1

109 109 complaints received

100% Stage 1 complaints responded to within 10 working days (Target 98%)

75% People the complaints procedure (Target 78%)

98.7% 99.9% 98.1%

Repairs completed in target (Target 99%)

Emergency (Target 99.5%)

Repair appointments made and kept (Target 96%)

þ

94%

People

their last repair (Target 89%)

100% Properties with a valid gas safety (Target 100%)

12.3d 2.65% 70%

Average number of days to re-let an empty home (Target 16 days)

Current arrears as a % of rent due (general needs) (Target 2.6%)

how their ASB report was dealt with (Target 72%)

ý

97 97 compliments received

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Working together to improve your estate - it’s easy as 1,2,3 .. ... .. ... .. .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... ..... ..... ..... ..... ..... ... . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . . .. . .. . . .

Have you ever noticed a repair needed in a communal area or a problem with your local estate? If you have, we want to hear from you so we can get the problem fixed as quickly as possible. We are launching our new 1,2,3 campaign to allow you to report these repairs using your phone.

What to do: 1 Take a photo on your phone 2 Attach the photo to an e-mail, stating the location of the problem 3 Send the email to: 123repairs@swan.org.uk

The Estate Services team will then log the repair or if needed e-mail you for more details. If you have regular visits by Estate Services they will also attach one of their stickers to the repair when they next visit so you know the problem has been identified.

We will continue to improve the ways you can report repairs, so if you have any other ideas about how we can make this easier, send your ideas to Jorgen Dyer, Swan’s Head of Estate Services jdyer@swan.org.uk


THE COMMUNICATOR PAGES 17/18

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Swan Rewards Our way of saying thank you

Here is your chance to win some fabulous prizes as part of the Swan Reward Scheme. Please check that you qualify by visiting web4residents.org.uk and then just choose which of these great prizes you would like to win. The closing date for entries is 23 January 2017.

.. .... .... . . .. . .. . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . .. . . . . . . . .. .. .. . . . . . . .. .. ... ... ... .. ... .. ... ... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. .. . .. .. . .. . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . ...... ......... .

Xbox One with Fifa Bundle

Ipad Mini

HP Laptop

What are Santa’s little helpers called?

On which day does Christmas Day fall this year?

On Christmas Day what would you find a joke inside of?

Snowmen

Elves

Fairies

Sunday

Monday

Tuesday

Stocking

Turkey

Cracker

Name .........................................................................

Name .........................................................................

Name .........................................................................

Address....................................................................

Address....................................................................

Address....................................................................

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Phone no. ..............................................................

Phone no. ..............................................................

Phone no. ..............................................................

Bush 49inch Full HD Hotpoint Fridge Freeview Smart LED TV Freezer

2 x prize of £100 Argos vouchers

Who pulls Santa’s sleigh?

What is usually placed on top of a Christmas tree?

Reindeers

Huskies

What vegetable is usually used for a snowman’s nose? Horses

Sprout

Cucumber

Carrot

Robin

Star

Snowman

Name .........................................................................

Name .........................................................................

Name .........................................................................

Address....................................................................

Address....................................................................

Address....................................................................

.........................................................................................

.........................................................................................

.........................................................................................

Phone no. ..............................................................

Phone no. ..............................................................

Phone no. ..............................................................

if you qualify just answer the questions and cut out the coupon for each prize you wish to be entered for. Then post all entries in one envelope to: Swan Housing Association, FREEPOST ANG10361, Billericay, CM12 9ZZ or email us at improvement@swan.org.uk quoting 'Swan Reward Scheme competition’ with your answers, name and address. Images are for illustrative purposes only and prizes may vary


................................................. The funny zone!

...

KIDS’ ZONE Christmas Wordsearch . . .. . . . .. . . . .. .. . . . . . . . . . .. .. .. .. ... . ... . ... .. .. ... . ... .. ... .. ..... ..... ..... .. ... .. ... .. ... .. ..... ...

Q. What do snowmen eat for breakfast? A. Frosted Flakes!

Q. What’s white and goes up? A. A confused snowflake

Q. What goes ‘oh, oh, oh’? A. Father Christmas walking backwards

Q. Who hides in a bakery at night? A. Mince spy!

Autumn Word Search winners Winner £25 Argos Voucher Sami, Chadwell Heath Runners up Swan colouring book Saimah, London Paris, Basildon

. .. . . .. . . ... ....... .. .....

There are ten hidden Winter words to find: Santa, Reindeer, Snowball, Presents, Christmas, Turkey, Carols, Baubles, Tinsel and Chimney. Find all ten and you could win a £25 Argos Voucher. The two runners up will win a Kids’ Zone Activity Book.

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When you have found all ten, cut out your entry and return with your name, age and address to: Jennifer Spencer-Charles, Swan Housing Association, FREEPOST ANG 10361 Entries will be drawn on 24 January 2017 This competition is only open to Swan residents aged 16 or under.

Your Name ....................................................................................................................................

Your age ....................................................................................................................................

Address .................................................................................................................................... .................................................................................................................................... ....................................................................................................................................


Compliments

In your language

ted ppor u pport s u r s . u . . d o t ce an Abou ing servi r help on’t know .” u o y s Id all all hou u for ith mum. hout you o y k t n i “Tha e years w e done w h v t a r ld h ove I wou t a h w r heste c l o C , About our compliance Mrs B team... r “Samara was fantastic About ou vice… r e s e t a t throughout!” s e a g in o d “Anna is she Mr H, Basildon l job and fu r e d n o w te li o very p is always ful” and help rays Miss O, G

Swan Housing Association

Please call 0300 303 2500 if you would like someone to explain any of these articles to you.

Head Office: Pilgrim House Billericay Essex CM12 9XY

Polish

All our offices are open Monday - Thursday 9.00am - 5.15pm

Somali

Friday 9.00am - 5.00pm Tel: 0300 303 2500 Repairs: 0800 783 2768 or 020 3597 2067 from a mobile (24 hrs a day)

Punjabi

Email: info@swan.org.uk Online: www.swan.org.uk Bengali

A reminder that our offices will be closed from close of business Friday 23 December to Tuesday 3 January 2017

For details of other ways to report a repair, make a complaint or compliment and how to contact us by text please visit the Swan website

If an emergency arises during the seasonal office closures, residents can call the following telephone numbers to report an emergency:

Arabic

Urdu

Repairs Emergency: 0800 783 2768 Anti-Social Behaviour Emergency: 0800 075 6699 National Domestic Violence Helpline: 0808 2000 247

Swan HA www.swan.org.uk @swanhousing

Hera Management Services www.heramanagementservices.co.uk @heramanagemenet

Vivo Support www.vivosupport.co.uk @vivosupport

NU living www.nuliving.co.uk @nulivinghomes

Swan Foundation www.swanfoundation. org.uk @swanfoundation

The Communicator - Winter 2016  

The winter edition of the newsletter for residents of Swan Housing Association.

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