Covid-19 is rapidly changing the world around us, and is having a profound impact on people’s jobs, communities and lives.
Housing associations in Wales support over 250,000 tenants in Wales, and during these uncertain times, they have adapted the services they offer to ensure tenants remain safe and secure in their homes. Rhiannon Hicks and Keith Henson are both self-isolating due to health reasons, but they have been able to continue carrying out essential support work on behalf of Tai Ceredigion during the Coronavirus lockdown.
Rhiannon: “Although work has now changed significantly due to Covid-19, I still have a laptop at home and access to internet, so it’s been all about using these to make an impact on the service we are offering tenants. I’m proud to be part of the team making calls to tenants. We make sure that they have the medication and supplies they need, check on their general wellbeing, advise on any concerns they might have about rent or benefits, and see they are in regular contact with friends and family.
I’m grateful to be in a position to help all our elderly and vulnerable tenants, while I have to be careful of my own health. It has been great to speak with them all and give them as much support as we can in these uncertain times. A cheerful little chat to brighten up their day when they can’t see anyone else is certainly a good day’s work.’
Keith: “In addition to the Scheme Coordinators who take care of our Sheltered Schemes we got together with the housing team to work on a plan of support for elderly and vulnerable tenants in the community, to make sure we were able to contact everyone and ensure their needs were being met. It was great to be part of a team of six people who made calls to nearly 500 tenants, and then to hear the positive response from the tenants family and friends too who feel reassured that their loved ones are receiving proper care and support at this time. The geographical area of Ceredigion is challenging and online deliveries are nearly impossible to arrange (if available at all) so we use a list of local contacts for each area of the county that has been created for food deliveries and volunteer groups for pharmacy collections.
I’m lucky to be in a position that my employer is considerate and allows us to work from home and carry out this ‘virtual’ service. My usual job is different to this and I don’t usually get a chance to be in contact with tenants in this way. It’s a rewarding challenge in unprecedented times.’
Housing associations in Wales will be profiling the work they are doing to support tenants in Wales through a new campaign called ‘With You‘. Follow this campaign through CHC’s Twitter page @CHCymru and searching for the hashtag #withyou