#HousingWeek – Looking To The Future
To close on Housing Week, Gerry Kelly, Apex Chief Executive reflects below on the community involvement work within Apex and looks to the future and how Apex will continue to work in partnership with tenants and residents.
Apex first launched a Community Involvement Strategy back in 1999 and we are currently on our fifth strategy ‘Shaping Your Community 2014 – 2017’ and are in the process of developing our new strategy for 2017- 2020. Over the years the organisation has changed and grown but what has not changed is the commitment of the organisation and the staff to involve tenants and residents to improve the quality of our housing and related services.
Apex has always looked to respond and work with the community in a way that suits them. Over the past week we have posted a series of articles which demonstrates the ways in which we engage with tenants and residents. The articles also show the new areas of work we are involved in and are developing with our tenants and residents being at the centre of this.
In looking to the future we will develop and launch our new Community Involvement Strategy after a consultation period with our tenants, residents and stakeholders who will play a vital role in this. Our new strategy will be developed in line with the NI Tenant Participation Strategy 2015 – 2020 and the introduction of the Department for Communities’ new Consumer Standard and other statutory requirements.
We will continue to look for opportunities for further and continued engagement through Apex Living and our Apex Living Centre which has delivered IT services for the community, space for community meetings and cookery demonstrations which are all vital in equipping and providing valuable skills.
We will grow our Financial Inclusion work with individuals and communities and many of the services provided are regularly featured on the website. Through our Good Relations and Community Involvement work we will continue to engage with our tenants and work with them to make positive contributions to how we deliver services to communities across both our general needs and supported living developments.
And finally we will continue with our Africa Project. Since 2000 Apex has been fundraising to support projects in Kenya and Tanzania under the auspices of Children in Crossfire (CIC), an international charity with personnel based there. Apex has now donated £200,000 towards projects supported by Children in Crossfire in marginalised communities.