High-flying Bradford BME association scoops two Northern Housing Awards

Manningham Housing Association (MHA) has triumphed in two categories at the Northern Housing Awards.

The BME organisation, which manages more than 1,400 homes for over 6,000 residents in Bradford and Keighley, won the prestigious Northern Housing Team of the Year Award with Cath Bacon named Tenant of the Year.

MHA was also shortlisted for Landlord of the Year at the ceremony held at Emirates Old Trafford in Manchester.

The association’s Community Engagement Team secured the Northern Housing Team of the Year Award for their success in delivering Building Bridges Bradford, a pioneering new venture devised to bolster community resilience and bring individuals and families from diverse backgrounds together through social action activities.

The project also supported those affected by COVID-19 including people experiencing mental health challenges, loss of income and isolation due to lockdown.

Nasir Hussain, MHA Community Partnerships and Investment Manager, who collected the trophy, said:

“I am proud of every single member of the team.  This includes my colleagues at MHA, the many community volunteers who did so much of the heavy lifting and the more than 2,200 people who took part in activities ranging from outdoor physical exercise to online coffee mornings.

“The foundations for Building Bridges Bradford were already in place before the pandemic struck.  However, rather than be deterred by the huge challenges it inevitably created, everyone involved simply rolled up their sleeves with the shared objective of improving life experiences in some of the most vulnerable communities across the district.

“They deserve the recognition that this award brings.”

Cath Bacon, who is also Vice-Chair of Bradford District Credit Union, a governor of Airedale Hospital and a well-known community activist, said:

“I am honoured to receive the Tenant of the Year award.

“Manningham Housing Association has been a huge part of my life.  As well as being a long-standing MHA tenant, I am a Board member and Chair of the Customer Panel which scrutinises the services provided to tenants and makes recommendations for improvements.

“I have enjoyed being a voice for all tenants inside MHA and hope I have played my part in it becoming one of the most admired housing associations in the country.”

Ulfat Hussain, MHA Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Operations, who also attended the ceremony, said:

“It was a wonderful experience to see Nasir and Cath collect their awards.

“To have the best housing team and best tenant in the North of England at Manningham Housing Association is a remarkable outcome, particularly given our relatively small size.

“It is also an immense pleasure to fly the flag for Bradford and Keighley, where lots of good work is going on to bring communities together.

“In collaboration with our partners across the district, we will continue to be at the forefront of these positive initiatives.”

Barrington Billings, MHA Chair, said:

“The quality of people at Manningham Housing Association is only surpassed by the levels of personal humility they display.

“I am therefore doubly delighted that the Community Engagement Team and Cath Bacon have had their efforts highlighted by winning these much sought after awards.

“I know the feelings of excitement and joy will be shared by all at MHA.”