FROM THE FRONTLINE: MEET JACQUELINE, OUR NEW RESIDENT SERVICES MANAGER
Jacqueline has recently joined Your Place to lead on the delivery of our resident services. This week, Jacqueline shares how she and the team support our residents from referral to move on.
"My main goal is to make moving into and out of Your Place as simple and smooth for residents as possible, and to ensure that the service we provide to them on their journeys out of homelessness is first class."
I’m Jacqueline, the new Resident Services Manager at Your Place. My role is to lead the Resident Services Teams who provide a housing Management service to residents throughout their time here. The team are responsible for processing referrals into our supported accommodation, supporting residents to manage their finances to pay their accommodation charges, helping residents to move on into independent accommodation with the skills to sustain tenancies when they are ready, as well as our Customer Service team that manage our reception, which is often the first point of contact for both current and prospective residents.
We work with our Personal Development team to assess each referral we receive to ensure that our service is a good-fit for the individual, and if so, they are invited for an interview where we can explore their support needs and expectations of our service further. Once a resident moves in, they are allocated their own room and a keyworker from our Personal Development Team, and together we do everything we can to ensure that their journey to independent living is as smooth and supportive as possible.
When they move in, many residents require support with their finances, employment, training and education. They may have lost their homes because of low income or a loss of employment, and are keen to manage their finances well and get back on track. We have Education, Training and Employment (ETE) and in-house Housing Benefit specialist teams who work with our residents helping to set up housing benefit, budgeting and we also provide access to food, toiletries, clothing and interview-wear to residents to minimise their outgoings.
Our ultimate goal for all residents that move into Your Place is that they go on to move into their own homes. That’s why we build relationships with the local authority, supported and privately rented accommodation providers so that residents can find and secure somewhere to live. We provide tenancy sustainment training and help residents to gain life skills that help to ensure they can sustain their new tenancies. We help with the practicalities of moving too – going to viewings, and transporting a residents’ belongings into their new home.
Once they’ve moved on, we continue to provide support to residents for a further six months as they start their next chapters. Since the start of the year we have helped thirty people who were experiencing homelessness to find and secure their own homes, I am so proud of the team, who are so passionate about what they do and are making a real difference to people’s lives. That’s why we do what we do – to help people.
Since 1997, I have helped directly and indirectly to house people who were experiencing or at risk of homelessness, or living in inadequate accommodation. It’s important to remember that homelessness can affect any of us, and I’m passionate about ensuring that all residents receive first-class service and support.
Good housing management practice is in my DNA! In my career, I have worked in frontline roles, behind the scenes, ensured compliance, provided training and helped develop policies and good practice. I believe in continuous improvement and in my new role at Your Place, I am really excited to be part of the team that is already having a huge positive impact on people’s lives, and am looking forward to working together to make even more of a difference.