‘Exceptional’ housing association reaches new heights after glowing reports from assessor

Manningham Housing Association (MHA) has again achieved the highest standard of Customer Service Excellence and been officially reaccredited for its work in promoting equality, diversity and inclusion after becoming the first housing association in the country to receive both accolades in 2019.

In two glowing reports from the Centre for Assessment, MHA – which manages more than 1,400 homes for over 6,000 residents in Bradford and Keighley – was described as “excellent” and “an exceptional organisation.”

The verdict on the association retaining the BS76005 Standard for Valuing People through Diversity and Inclusion said:

“The entire MHA team is focused on exceeding customers’ expectations, delivering excellent customer service by providing more homes, looking after the existing homes, investing in the community, developing partnerships and, as the only BME landlord in Bradford, MHA has the leverage and standing within the city to become a lead voice for BME communities.”

The report continued:

MHA is clearly a values driven organisation and people are strongly committed to the work of the association.  Diversity and inclusion are deeply embedded in the DNA of the organisation, the association was founded some 35 years ago and it is clear that those principles have not only endured over the decades and the sense of inclusion has increased as the organisation reaches out to wider communities.”

In a separate document confirming MHA had also kept its Customer Service Excellence accreditation, including the award of Compliance Plus status across 10 separate assessment areas, the official assessor praised the efforts staff had made to expand services to tenants and the wider community during the COVID-19 lockdown.

He wrote:

The extent to which MHA has not only continued to deliver core services but has extended the offer – totally incorporating online delivery models – is particularly noteworthy. The activities were flexible and delivered during the day, evenings and weekends to ensure that those struggling during this pandemic could access the necessary support.

“Support sessions and activities ranged from confidence building, mental health management, online money management, therapeutic wellbeing support, online healthy eating/cooking and physical mobility support sessions such as yoga and online seated exercises for people with disabilities.”

Ulfat Hussain, MHA Assistant Chief Executive, said:

“The assessor’s conclusions are a testament to all at Manningham Housing Association who have outperformed even my highest expectations since the pandemic took hold.

“We were never content with seeking to ride out that period of time and hope that COVID would go away.  Instead, we endeavoured to do everything we could to support our tenants and the wider communities, as well as each other.

“It is heartening that these efforts have been recognised by the Centre for Assessment. Every one of the team at every level should feel mightily proud of themselves.”

Cath Bacon, an MHA tenant and Chair of the association’s Customer Panel who also serves on the Housing Ombudsman Resident Panel, said:

“I am thrilled that we have retained both accreditations so spectacularly.

“I speak to fellow MHA residents in Keighley and Bradford every day and I know how grateful they have felt at the quality and nature of support received.

“Manningham Housing Association is a truly remarkable organisation and it is wonderful to see that this has been properly recognised once again.”

Barrington Billings, MHA Chair, said:

“It was major milestone when MHA became the first housing association in England to achieve the BS76005 Standard for Valuing People through Diversity and Inclusion.

“Retaining this and the Customer Service Excellence accreditation confirms the total commitment everyone in the association has to the people we serve and the ambitions we hold for the neighbourhoods they live in.

“On behalf of my Board colleagues, I pay tribute to all the staff for their achievements and look forward to many more.”

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