Resident Participation Funding

1.     The council will establish a new Resident Participation Fund, this will replace the current Tenants Fund, Homeowners Fund and TRISG grants. The total funding will be increased from £860,000 to £900,000. This fund will need to benefit people who live in council homes as it will be funded by tenants and homeowners. It will fund the following activities: 

          ii.         Half (£450,000) will to go to grassroots activity to fund: 

a.     Core Grants for TRAs (currently £178,000): These are grants paid annually to all fully established TRAs covering council homes.  The amount TRAs receive will be unchanged. TRAs covering 240 or less tenancies will continue to receive £1,300, with TRAs covering more than 240 tenancies continuing to receive an additional £5.50 per tenancy as is currently the case.

b.    Resident Participation Small Grants (£272,000): This will provide funding for small grants of up to £5,000 to support projects and activates that bring tenants and residents together and improve their wellbeing.  These grants will fund projects and activities that primarily benefit people who live in council owned homes. Applications will be open to established and emerging TRAs and TMOs as well as constituted local groups that can evidence that the application has been developed by and for people living in council homes. Decisions on the grants will be made by the Cabinet Member for Housing Management and Modernisation based on recommendations from a panel of tenant and resident representatives.

        iii.          Half (£450,000) will cover Southwark wide activity. Decisions on this funding will be made by the Cabinet Member for Housing Management and Modernisation based on recommendations from the Joint Tenants and Homeowners Forum, this will include funding for:

a.     Independent Support and Advice Services (£260,000):  This will fund Southwark wide independent support and advice services for council tenants and resident homeowners, including those provided by Southwark Group of Tenant Organisations as well as other advice services. These services will be commissioned on behalf of tenants and residents by the council based on priorities set by the Joint Tenants and Homeowners Forum in consultation with wider tenants and resident homeowners. It is anticipated that this will be through multi year contracts. The council will work with the Joint Tenants and Home Owners Forum to monitor the performance of these services. 

b.     Training (£100,000), to support the active participation of tenants and residents in their local community, including training that support people to set up and run all aspects of TRAs

c.     Other resident participation activities (£50,000), including meetings, conferences and travel and other activities that support effective resident participation

d.    Administration of the above grants/contracts (£40,000)

2.     To provide time for the commissioning of contracts for independent support and advice services, the current grants for these services from the tenants and homeowners funds to the Southwark Group of Tenants Organisations and Citizens Advice Bureau will be extended for a further six months to the 31 September 2020 with funding from the new Resident Participation Fund. 

3.     Currently the formula for TRA Core Grants requires a budget of £178,000, if more homes were to be covered by TRAs in future, funding for the Resident Participation Small Grants will need to be reduced to cover this cost.