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Thenue strengthens its financial help for tenants

Two financial inclusion officers made permanent.

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Thenue Housing has strengthened its helping hand for tenants on money matters, it was announced this week.

Two key members of staff have seen their roles made permanent as the association continues its drive to help customers on financial issues.

The association’s Financial Inclusion Service has proved a huge success helping hundreds of tenants each year – and often relieving the financial pressure on households.

Now Financial Inclusion Officers Ashley Frame and Iain Thomson have had confirmation that the roles they undertake have been made permanent. The association said that this is due to the impact they have had in maximising tenants’ income and, in turn, Thenue’s rental income.

The move reflects Thenue’s strong commitment to continuing its Financial Inclusion Service, which has obtained hundreds of thousands of pounds for tenants to – benefits that they are entitled to and may not have been claiming. This includes benefits such as Personal Independence Payments and Job Seeker’s Allowance.

Only this week it emerged that one Thenue tenant was helped to obtain a Personal Independence Payment after she received assistance in completing the application form. She was then awarded the benefit PLUS a backdated sum of £2,000, because she made an appointment with the team to find out if she was eligible for help.

Gail Gribben, Thenue Income Maximisation Manager, said:

“This example proves beyond doubt that the work being done to offer financial help is producing results.

“There is also an important tenancy sustainment element to all this – by offering a helping hand, we are doing our utmost to make sure people keep their tenancies and receive help to which they are entirely entitled.

“Ashley and Iain are important members of the team, and they will help us keep on delivering for our tenants.”

The high profile nature of the Financial Inclusion Service has struck a chord with Thenue tenants. In the most recently customer satisfaction survey, carried out late last year, 79% of those surveyed were aware they had access to the service.

Charles Turner, Chief Executive of Thenue, said:

“We are very proud of our Financial Inclusion service and the remarkable work it does to make a difference to people’s lives.”

Last year, Thenue launched a new dedicated financial help newsletter for all customers over and above its regular newsletter. The second edition is to be published this spring.

Ashley Frame, Thenue Financial Inclusion Officer, said:

“We both have very rewarding jobs. Knowing that we are helping people access money and advice is extremely worthwhile and shows why housing associations are so important in local communities.”

Iain Thomson, Thenue Financial Inclusion Officer, said:

“It is yet another example of the work housing associations and housing co-operatives do across the country – so often unseen – but essential to making a difference.”

Pictured: Iain and Ashley.