Staff at one of the south east of England’s largest housing associations have hit an impressive milestone after six people were recognised for dedicating more than 30 years’ of service – or a total of 205 years – to the organisation.
The recognition took place at Southern Housing Group’s annual staff long service awards, which involved just over 100 people who have offered a combined total of more than 1500 years’ service to the organisation.
The longest serving staff member recognised at the awards, Vernon Chapman, has worked for the Group for the past 39 years.
“My job involves going out and about and making repairs to people’s homes and shared areas to make sure they’re in good condition. It has been great because I’ve been able to get to know a lot of residents and it’s clear they appreciate the work we do,” said Vernon.
“No day is the same and time has just flown by – I really can’t believe it has been 39 years.”
“Because my work involves being out of the office so much, sometimes you’re not sure that colleagues know what you’ve actually been doing, so it was great to be recognised for the work that I’ve done over the years and it was wonderful to be able to share that with other people.”
Kate Nelson, Group Corporate Services Director at Southern Housing Group, said that it was people like Vernon and those recognised at the annual long service awards who made the Group so strong.
“Without a doubt everyone in the business is committed to providing residents with great services, but what’s so impressive is that some of our colleagues have dedicated pretty much their entire working lives to our company and our values,” said Kate.
“They’re the backbone of the Group. The simple fact that we’ve got six staff who have been here for more than 30 years and another seven that have been here for more than 25 years shows our team’s dedication.
“Of course, we also provide a great environment for people to work in and our event was just one of the ways we like to thank staff for all the effort they have put in over the years.”
Southern Housing Group offers long service awards to staff who have been with the organisation for 5, 10, 15, 20 and, for the first time, in 2014 the Group also recognised people who have been with the company for 25 years or more.