Housing Hartlepool's trans- atlantic learning experience
NEWS RELEASE: ISSUED ON BEHALF OF HOUSING HARTLEPOOL
HOUSING HARTLEPOOL’S TRANS- ATLANTIC LEARNING EXPERIENCE
Housing Hartlepool’s best practice has gone international with a Canadian exchange work placement.
Gary Takhar, who works for Vancouver-based British Columbia Housing Management Commission (BC Housing), has travelled thousands of miles to expand his knowledge and experience by spending two weeks with Housing Hartlepool.
The 32-year-old’s fact-finding mission involves touring Housing Hartlepool projects, shadowing managers, visiting different departments and also visiting Tristar Homes in Stockton.
Gary has been staying at the home of Housing Hartlepool’s Brian Robinson who will take a trip to Canada later in the year.
The aim is for the two organisations to exchange ideas and knowhow and share best practice.
Gary is a project technologist which involves the facilitation and administration of building contracts.
He said: said: “My organisation will benefit immensely from this trip. My aim is to learn as much as I can about another country’s work systems, regulations and ethos.
“This experience will be invaluable to, not only my personal development, but to that of my colleagues at BC Housing with whom I will share what I have learnt.”
Gary has been particularly impressed with Housing Hartlepool’s Albany Court, saying he can understand why it is an award-winning project.
More than £3.2 million has been invested in Albany Court to bring the 26-year-old building up to modern standards. It won the Integration & Collaborative Working category at the Constructing Excellence in the North East (CENE) Awards,
Another aspect which has attracted his attention is how strong Housing Hartlepool’s branding is and how well-recognised it is within the town’s communities.
During his spare time, Gary is sampling the area’s culture, history, hospitality and countryside. He has climbed Roseberry Topping, visited Hartlepool Marina, dined at local restaurants and enjoyed one of the North East’s delicacies – fish and chips! Brian is also taking him to Edinburgh to enjoy the Edinburgh Festival.
Gary added: “I have been made very welcome. People are very friendly. I am really enjoying my time in Hartlepool, gaining knowledge that will help me in my work and also seeing the local sights and sampling the local food.”
Housing Hartlepool technical support manager Brian Robinson, 49, will be travelling to Vancouver in October to spend two weeks at the British Columbia Housing Management Commission.
He said: “I will be looking at best practice within the Canadian social housing system. I hope to gain a better understanding of social housing in another country and to see what I ideas I can bring back to Housing Hartlepool.”
Bernadette Stainsby, Housing Hartlepool’s Head of Human Resources, said: “This is a great opportunity for both Brian and Gary to absorb different working customs and practices and exchange ideas and knowhow between Housing Hartlepool and the British Columbia Housing Management Commission.
“We are delighted to have Gary with us and look forward to learning about Brian’s experiences after his trip to Canada in October.”
Group Chief Executive Cath Purdy instigated the exchange. During a trip to Canada she contacted the British Columbia Housing Management Commission, which has led to Gary and Brian’s foreign work placements.
CONTACT: Helen Logan on 01325 363436
Notes to editors: Housing Hartlepool is the largest housing association in Hartlepool.
It was set up in March 2004 to take over the ownership and management of the Council's rented housing stock following a positive ballot by tenants. It is a not for profit charitable organisation.
Housing Hartlepool is run by a voluntary board that consists of four tenant members, four council nominees and four independent people.
The company manages 7,000 properties throughout the Hartlepool area and surrounding villages. These range from five-bedroom family houses to flats for single people. In addition there is a wide range of bungalows and sheltered housing complexes for the elderly.
In addition to its core landlord role Housing Hartlepool is also the main housing regeneration agent in the town and is developing much needed affordable homes in the area.
For more information, go to: www.housinghartlepool.org.uk
l-r Brian Robinson, Housing Hartlepool technical support manager and Gary Takhar from British Columbia Housing Management Commission (BC Housing)