Lewisham council tenants and leaseholders are being urged to attend a course aimed at helping them engage with landlords and develop their skills and job prospects.
The three-day course, Improving Housing Services, hosted by London Metropolitan University, will be held at Lewisham Civic Centre.
Patrick Mulrenan, a course leader for BSc Community Development and Leadership at London Met University, who runs the course, told EastLondonLines: “The main aim is to help residents engage with their landlords and get involved in consultations.”
Since the course started running in 2013, it has helped 15 people secure full-time employment or go onto further training. Three of the former participants have also gone on to become members of the management board of Lewisham Homes to help others in the area.
Mulrenan added: “It’s a good spin-off in employability. The course idea is to help people who haven’t been in education for a long time and get them back into it. They also receive a certificate and transcript after the course, which is valued by universities.”
Those who live in Lewisham can participate in the course but must fill a form explaining why they would like to join and have a basic level of English and IT skills.
Mulrenan says: “We don’t like to reject people and try our absolute best to bring people on. However, participants must be able to process words and write in an acceptable way.”
Mulrenan, who has worked for both local authorities and housing associations, is currently a member of a regional board of Genesis Housing Association, one of the largest developer housing associations in London. It manages around 33,000 homes across London and the south east, providing services to tens of thousands of people.
He said: “I have a background in housing and I believe it plays a very important role if you want to improve health, education and social views in an area, especially in London.”