Getting involved - frequently asked questions

Frequently asked questions
I am interested in getting involved, what do I need to do?

We have a list of ‘make a difference’ volunteers which is made up of our customers who want to get involved. 

To join the list we just need some information about you.  We can send you a form to complete to give us this information.  We will then invite you to come along to meetings and events and it’s up to you which ones you come to.

What are the ways I can get involved?

There are lots of different ways you can get involved depending on what you’re interested in influencing and how much time you have to spare. 

An involvement officer can phone you back to talk about what you’re interested in, we can send you a leaflet which you can read through or if you have internet access you can have a look at the Getting Involved section of our website.

How much time will it take to get involved?

The amount of time you give will depend on the ways you choose to get involved.  We can send you a guide which shows you the different amount of time needed for each involvement activity.  If you don’t have much time there are lots of quick ways you can get involved.

What information will I be sent in the post?

We will send you our guide to getting involved which gives you information about the ways you can get involved.  We’ll also send you a copy of the tenant and leaseholder involvement compact, and a short form for you to complete to join the list of ‘make a difference’ volunteers.

What support can I get to get involved?

We want all our customers to have the chance to get involved.  This is why we offer lots of different ways for you to get involved.

To make sure you can come to any sessions you are interested in, we will provide help to attend meetings where it is needed, including:

  • help towards travel expenses
  • interpreters and translators
  • help with childcare
  • disabled access
  • hearing loops
  • all documents and presentations written in Plain English
  • signers.

Will any training be provided to help me get involved?

We provide training to help tenants and leaseholders with certain types of involvement, depending on how you want to get involved.

How do I find out if there is a tenants’ group in my area?

Newcastle Tenants’ Federation is the umbrella organisation for tenants' and residents’ groups in Newcastle.  They will be able to tell you if there is a tenants’ group in your area or help you set one up if there isn’t one.  You can contact them on 0191 2321371.

Do I have to come to every meeting?

No, you don’t have to come to every meeting we invite you to if you don’t want to.  You can choose which meetings you would like to come to.

Can I bring my friend/ neighbour to the meeting?

They must be a council tenant (or sometimes leaseholder); they must book a place and must be willing to contribute to the session.  Sometimes due to the nature of the session or size of the group it won’t be possible.

I’ve got a complaint, can I bring it up at the meeting?

The purpose of meetings is to talk about services generally, not to talk about individual complaints.  There might be staff at the session that could deal with your complaint at the end or you can make a formal complaint (we can send you a form to do this).

Why have I been invited to the meeting?

You have been invited because you have told us that you are interested in talking to us about services.  We write to lots of people to invite them to our meetings.

Why do you pay expenses for meetings?

We pay £10 expenses to cover out of pocket expenses such as travel costs, childcare and carer expenses.  This is so that all customers have an equal chance to get involved regardless of personal financial circumstances.

What if a meeting is fully booked?

We might be able to put you on a reserve list or if this is not possible and you really want to give us some feedback you can do this in writing. You can ask us to send you the notes of the meeting so you can read what was discussed. We will also invite you to future meetings.