Resident Scrutiny Panel investigates: what is social value?

Updated: 28 September 2020 at 09:52am

Our Resident Scrutiny Panel has just released a report into social value: what it is, how we get it and why it's important. The report looks at how we provide social value as an organisation and through our programmes, and the non-cash benefits this has for our residents and community.

The role of the Scrutiny Panel is to put Phoenix under the microscope. The Panel was formed in 2014 to improve services and is made up of five residents that work together with staff to monitor and review how Phoenix is performing. The Panel focus on a range of topics throughout each year to ensure that Phoenix is meeting the standards on behalf of other residents.


"Social value can be described as the wider non-financial impacts of programmes, organisations and projects, especially on the wellbeing of individuals and communities and of the environment." – Resident Scrutiny Panel Summary Report on Social Value.


Since 2012, there has been a requirement on public bodies, including housing associations, to provide social value, the non-cash impact of this benefits our residents and community. 

The Panel have looked at how we provide social value through our contractors and programmes. For example, our Community Chest, a fund of £100,000 that we give to local community groups and projects, decided by our residents. 

These projects benefit our residents, whether through providing a safe space for children to go during summer holidays, or an employment programme to help residents get better jobs and better pay. All of these provide social value through an increase in wellbeing and opportunities.

The panel also looked at how we measure social value, how much we get for each pound invested, and how much it actually benefits residents. They found that for every £1 we invest, the social return ranges from £0.63p to £43.42.

Based on their findings, the panel have made their conclusions and top 3 recommendations, one of which is to add social value as a subject to our award-winning Phoenix Academy.

The review began in March but publication of the final report was delayed due to lockdown. Click here to read the report and find out more.

Thank you to our Resident Scrutiny Panel members Eileen Davies, Karen Ward, Gwen Smith, Deirdre Kennedy (who has now left the panel to join the Resident Communications Group) and Frank Osborne.

We're always looking for new members to join the Resident Scrutiny Panel. If you'd like to be involved in scrutinising Phoenix Community Housing’s services and ensuring a good service for all our residents, please get in contact.