A MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIR AND THE DIRECTOR
Welcome to our Annual Report 2015/16.
In the following pages we report on the work that we have been focusing on as we continue to support our members, stakeholders and government to achieve a Wales where everyone matters.
Last year we celebrated our 10th anniversary, and as we move into our second decade, we’re clear about the scale of the challenges ahead. Hate crime and prejudice are on the increase across the UK, and it has become increasingly important to bring people together in a world where the media are fuelling tensions between different groups of people.
We’re proud to work with Welsh Government as a critical friend to ensure that equality and diversity is valued and celebrated across the communities of Wales.
We’re also proud to continue working on behalf of our members to promote excellent practice and to support inclusion and respect for all.
We have continued to do this at a time when resources are becoming increasingly strained. The Board and staff are focused on achieving a sustainable future for Tai Pawb, growing our membership and ensuring we achieve value for money in all that we do. We’re also excited to be launching our fantastic new Quality Mark scheme during the coming year.
We hope you enjoy reading our Annual Report. We’d like to thank our members, staff, partners and board members for their continuing contribution to our success as an organisation.
We would like to express our special gratitude to Menna Jones – a long standing member of staff who retired this year and Mair Thomas, who moved on after making a great contribution to Tai Pawb over the past six years. We are also extremely grateful to two fantastic trustees who left the board this year – Kevin Howell and Julie Nicholas and to Katija Dew for expertly leading the organisation in an interim period between January and May 2016.
Michelle Reid – Chair
Alicja Zalesinska – Director
Tai Pawb Promotes Equality & Social Justice in Housing in Wales.
We believe that all people have the right to access good quality housing and homes in cohesive and safe communities. We want to reduce prejudice, disadvantage and poverty
To promote equality and social justice in housing in Wales.
To be the primary driver in the promotion of equality and diversity in housing, leading to the reduction of prejudice, disadvantage and poverty.
To be a valued partner who supports housing providers and services to recognise, respect and respond appropriately to the diversity of housing needs and characteristics of people living in Wales, including those who are vulnerable and marginalised.
We have four strategic priorities which encompass and provide a focus for all our work.
Policy: We work with Welsh Government and partner bodies to ensure that equality and diversity is an integral part of national, regional and local housing policy.
Practice: We support housing services and providers to ensure that equality is embedded within the provision and delivery of housing and related services and initiatives
Awareness: We raise awareness of housing and wider inequality issues facing people with protected characteristics and the role of housing in enabling equality.
Sustainability: We ensure that Tai Pawb remains fit for purpose and proactively maximises opportunities to increase its capacity and sustainability.
“We are proud to continue working on behalf of our members to promote excellent practice and to support inclusion and respect for all.”
Tai Pawb plays a key role in influencing national debates and decisions with an impact on equal housing provision. Our expert voice and insight helps to ensure that the impact decisions have on the lives of diverse and disadvantaged people is considered from the outset.
This year we worked closely with our colleagues in Welsh Government by assisting them in their equality related work but also utilising our political and other influence where possible. We helped Welsh Government to monitor the national progress in the development of Accessible Housing Registers in Wales. We advised and offered our feedback and contribution on a variety of topics, including immigration, accessible housing, homelessness, equality monitoring, allocations and more.
We have done this through our engagement with individual officers, politicians and working groups such as the Homelessness Strategy Working Group, Housing Information Group, Cross Party Housing Group, Cross Party Group on Disability, Gypsies and Travellers and more.
“We provided written and oral evidence as part of the Renting Homes Bill legislative process and worked in partnership with Cymorth Cymru to make representations to the minister in relation to key issues affective the supporting people sector, like the temporary exclusions. We have also actively participated in Renting Homes Stakeholder Group”.
We worked closely with the regulator as part of the Regulation Advisory Group and outside of it – an effective collaboration which resulted in developing the plans for our Quality Mark
We also raised awareness of key issues relating to Right to Rent checks. We worked in partnership with our colleagues in Shelter Cymru, Welsh Refugee Council, Diverse Cymru, CHC and CIH Cymru to highlight the risks and suggest solutions to these important immigration law developments, which may lead to an increase in homelessness amongst BME people. We wrote to the minister, engaged with UK parliament, met with our colleagues in the Home Office and invited them to speak at our immigration themed seminar which we organised in partnership with BAWSO.
This was also a busy year for consultations – we have provided comprehensive written responses to 25 different consultations this year, including Violence Against Women and Domestic Abuse Bill, Renting Homes Bill, Homelessness related codes and legislative changes as well as national strategies and plans related to mental health and Trans* issues (we influenced the content of the national action plan on Transgender Equality by highlighting the role of housing providers).
We also provided oral evidence to the prestigious United Nations committee on the rights of persons with disabilities, influencing UN report on how countries are performing on disability equality and independent living.
Tai Pawb plays a key role in supporting our members, challenging and helping them improve their practice in relation to equality and diversity. Our support inspires people and communities to embrace equality and diversity.
Our work is led not only by our expertise and knowledge of equality and diversity issues but crucially by the needs of our members. This year we continued our work on enabling and empowering our members to put equality and diversity at the heart of their practice.
We continued our facilitation of Tai Pawb member led Welsh Housing Equality Network helping members share their best practice, discuss key issues and practical solutions to equality and diversity challenges.
We provided the network with regular updates on policy issues affecting their work and helped facilitate meetings on topics such as Equality Impact Assessments, Embedding Change and Welsh Language Standards, making sure that all the key stakeholders and best practice organisations were there to contribute. We have also set up a Yammer group for the network to make sharing on information that little bit easier for members.
“We also continued facilitating Accessible Housing Register Network, enabling Local Authorities, Housing Associations and other organisations interested in further developing Accessible Housing to exchange practice and learn from others”.
Our training services have grown from strength to strength – following a review of our membership benefits we have expanded our training offer including engaging associates to deliver excellent courses such as Unconscious Bias or developing a new partnership course with TPAS focusing on engaging underrepresented groups. We launched our new training brochure and held a training taster day. This translated into an increase in demand for our training (we delivered 30 sessions and had many booked in for the next year) and some great feedback, like this:
“Pennaf Housing Group has engaged with Tai Pawb on a number of occasions to deliver training to our Board, Management Team and Staff. We find that they deliver each subject with passion, enthusiasm and real knowledge for the subject. Helpful trainers with a lovely demeanour make the experience a pleasure” – Pennaf Housing Group
“The Equality training Tai Pawb provided was really helpful. The staff and tenants who took part now understand what equality monitoring involves and why it is so important. The training was delivered in a format that was easy to understand and engaging. It has made staff more aware of the protected characteristics and how our services can be delivered in a way that is fair and non-discriminatory.” – Hafod Housing Association
We developed training on new homelessness duties and equality considerations and delivered 6 sessions across Wales through WLGA to all local authorities. We were also positively encouraged by the increase in demand for training for boards.
We know that our members clearly value our in-depth expert advice and assistance in relation to their day to day work. This year we delivered 26 different consultancy projects, from desktop policy and plan reviews, through tailored workshops on issues such as mental health or equality impact assessment sessions, to large scale, longer term projects involving whole teams, like a review of allocations systems and its impact on diverse groups of service users.
Our member helpline is also growing in popularity, we made a concerted effort to promote it and this year we handled 103 helpline enquiries including assisting staff with advice on recruitment of BME people, equality monitoring and profiling, reasonable adjustments for disabled people and changing names on tenancy agreements. We also developed expertise in new areas, for example we helped a local authority to carry out consultation with Gypsies and Travellers to contribute to their statutory needs assessment and we developed an equality health check for organisations – with several members utilising this service to inform their equality and diversity priorities.
This year we have also started work on our biggest and best development so far – a national quality mark, which will drive excellence in the sector and which will be endorsed by the regulator. Developed in close collaboration with the sector, the mark will be the first of its kind in Wales. It will set the bar on equality and diversity in housing, improve the experiences of diverse tenants, customers and staff, provide a framework for organisations to encompass their equality and diversity work and galvanise staff energy and focus around equality and diversity. The mark will be launched in April 2017 and we are looking forward to reporting on it in our next annual review.
Part of our role is to make people aware of why equality matters and inspire them to embrace equality and diversity in their organisations. This year we have focused on developing this part of our role.
In partnership with CIH Cymru, Community Housing Cymru and Chwarae Teg, we held a high profile Welsh launch of the fantastic CIH Leading Diversity by 2020 initiative, which challenged the sector to commit to 10 pledges and complete them in the next few years, hopefully leading to an increase in diversity in leadership positions- something that remains a challenge across the UK and Wales. Pre-launch we held a session which secured commitment to promote and monitor the success of this initiative from all partners and we were very happy to have had positive media coverage as well as attendance by Lesley Griffiths, the then Minister with responsibility for housing.
“We have also launched our own #LeaderLikeMe campaign which asks individuals to make practical and personal pledges, centred around supporting people from underrepresented groups in their leadership journey. In the year that followed the launch, we saw the first fantastic impacts of #LeaderLikeMe and we will report on them the following year.”
Challenging mental health stigma and raising awareness of mental health issues and solutions has been an important part of our work this year and a clear priority for our members. We held a very successful seminar on this topic, delivered workshops in organisations as well as raising awareness of this important agenda on social media during Mental Health Awareness Week.
We continued to deliver an innovative and diverse event offer on key policy and practice issues, focusing on promoting solutions and good practice. We have received fantastic feedback on our annual Creating Homes conference held on the exact “future” day feature in the famous “Back to the Future” film. It was also our 10 year anniversary and quite rightly we focused on equality and diversity achievements and challenges we still need to focus on. We think that feedback from one of the participants sums up the day:
“What a fabulous conference! Excellent content, brilliantly delivered. Amazing speakers. I took away so much that is helpful and I had so much to think about. The venue was fab, the food and drinks were fabulous. Couldn’t fault a thing. I’m already looking forward to next year’s conference!”
We also held seminars on topics such as Leadership and Diversity, links between the anti-poverty and equality agendas, mental health and housing eligibility linked to immigration. All our events this year were very successful as we focused on innovation, inspirational practice and an opportunity to network – all very valued by our members and partners.
This year we have also committed and worked on developing our new website with better functionality and design but most importantly a website which can serve as an innovative intelligence hub on everything equality, diversity and housing related. It will also provide better opportunities to showcase the work of our members and expand our thought leadership in the sector via blogs, videos and case studies.
Sustainability is very important to us. Tai Pawb is a small organisation with a big remit and any financial risks have serious implications on our activities. We have taken a proactive approach to ensuring our long terms sustainability. In the last four years, despite losing ca. 23% of our core grant funding, we have grown as an organisation – from 5 to 6 members of staff and delivered some fantastic work.
We continued in that vein this year. For example we refreshed our team roles and employed Business Development Manager to drive the longer term sustainability of the organisation, manage the development of Tai Pawb’s current and new business across Wales and help secure sufficient resources to help the organisation to achieve its vision and mission.
We focused on initiatives which not only have high impact in terms of our mission but can also provide a more sustainable source of income or maximise financial impact, including the quality mark, tenders and grant applications.
We development a communications plan which allowed us to better align our activities and communication throughout the year and to market ourselves more effectively.
We also developed and expanded our contacts database to make sure we get through to the right people at the right level in the right organisations.
- Investments £2,465
- Membership Fees £59, 575
- Tai Pawb Events £9,956
- Charitable Activities £212,328
- Other income £566
- TOTAL £284, 890
- Charitable Activities: £264,921
- Total: £264, 921
We would like to thank all our members for supporting Tai Pawb this year. We could not have done it without you! We would also like to express our thanks to the following organisations and people in particular, including funders, sponsors, members and partners:
Chartered Institute of Housing Cymru
Community Housing Cymru
Welsh Refugee Council
Uzo Iwobi OBE
Rev Aled Edwards OBE
Monmouthshire Housing Association
Our sincere thanks also go to our exceptional staff and trustees:
Katija Dew – for expertly leading the organisation as an interim Director