Resident engagement in the housing sector is unrecognisable compared to what it used to be encouraged by a plethora of regulation and standards but in relation to older people including sheltered and retirement housing residents, it is still not always as truly meaningful as it could be.
The Covid-19 pandemic has also highlighted how easily some older people can be excluded by a 'digital (or virtual) by default' process. There is a huge array of resources on resident engagement but not so much specifically about the engagement of older people in strategic decision making processes.
This new guide from Erosh (their members only) looks at resident engagement in a sheltered and retirement housing setting with good practice advice on minimising barriers and maximising the meaningful engagement of older people.
Although during the pandemic, the full range of engagement opportunities is clearly not feasible, resident engagement is no less important and perhaps even more so as more older people are shielding or self-isolating.
Some of the solutions aimed at encouraging the engagement of older people who may find it difficult for health and/or mobility reasons or who just prefer different ways of engaging, will be particularly useful at this time; and there is the opportunity to think carefully how we make sure technological and virtual engagement methods widen engagement for some older people but do not exclude others.