Residents celebrate as Staffs Housing takes over from Manchester provider and reconnects community

Date: 22/02/2023

Last year we took ownership of 100 affordable homes in Meir. They were a mix of houses, bungalows and flats. 

We took over the homes from a provider based in Manchester, stepping in to make sure residents had a local landlord they could reach easily when they need support.  

After welcoming the new residents last summer, we hosted a coffee morning to introduce ourselves and help bring the community together. 

The coffee mornings have been part of our initiative to make sure residents voices are heard. The session gives them an opportunity to speak to their housing officer or any internal support services.

The event welcomed residents from the homes and wider community for tea, coffee, and cake. 

Housing Manager Laura Dalton said residents were happy to have a local landlord after their previous one was based in Manchester. 

"We had a great turn out and it was so lovely to see the community come together,” said Laura.

“We were eager to visit our new community as part of our 2023 coffee morning schedule. It was important for residents to be able to put a face to a name and to know we’re here for them if they need us.

“Most were just happy to have someone to talk to about any concerns, issues or to provide feedback.

“As a local provider based in Stoke, it’s much easier for us to be proactively engaged with our communities in and around Staffordshire.

“Having a home you’re proud of is as much about the community you live in as the bricks and mortar it’s built with. It’s why we proactively look for ways to engage and help our communities". 

As part of our community support we also hosted our own summer clean up, gardening competition and community fund and regularly look for ways to help and support our communities. 

During the coffee morning staff also litter-picked the streets to help keep the community clean and tidy for residents. The team filled nine bags and an eight-tonne skip. 

Housing Officer Vicki Bernard helped a customer get rid of furniture and a garden full of bags. 

(Pictured: Housing Officer Vicki at a community clean up week last summer)

"I came across a garden filled with bags and old furniture. I knocked on and asked if the resident wanted to make full use of the community skip," said Vicki.

"I let them know that we're here to help residents in the community and together removed the rubbish. 

"The resident was grateful of the support and said they'd been wanting to remove it for some time but hadn't been able to. 

"Now the space is cleared, they're going to re-plant a memory tree in honour of their parents and will have a private space to think of them in."

Housing Officer Natalie Beqiri was one of the litter pickers and said it was an honour to give something back. 

"It's nice to be out in the communities we serve," added Natalie. "I'm proud to be doing my bit and giving back what I can."

Find out more about Staffs Housing's neighbourhood's team here

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