Nana’s Story

This is Nana Ama Mensah.

Nana has been a customer since 2018.  She lives with her three children aged 15, 13 and 9.

Nana is a busy woman – she works as a Support Worker for adults with learning disabilities and autism, and is also working towards a PhD in Health and Social Care.

She plans to be a lecturer, and work with the government and businesses in Ghana about inclusion and diversity.


What are you involved in now?

Nana is currently on the Together Greatwell group.  They have recently done some equity training and created some myth buster posts for our e-newsletter and social media.

She has also recently worked on the scrutiny review of communication and consultation in Independent Living.

Nana says that being involved with us online is flexible for her, as she able to attend meetings better than in-person meetings.


What made you start to get involved?

Nana has a brilliant journey into getting involved with Greatwell Homes.  In 2017 she was studying towards a degree in Social and Community Development.  Part of this course requires some volunteering hours with organisations working in homelessness, Housing and substance abuse.

Nana volunteered with Greatwell Homes and visited one of our Independent Living schemes and the Hemmingwell. When Nikki Glazebrook learned that Nana was a customer, he invited her to become an involved customer, and worked on the voids scrutiny review.

Nana also volunteered with the Citizens Advice Bureau, giving her some excellent insight and experience in themes that affect our other customers.


What do you get from involvement?

Nana thinks back to a conference she attended with Involvement Officer Gemma Ager and Steve, another involved customer a few years ago in Birmingham.  She said it’s nice to meet customers from other Housing providers and learn from each other.

Nana has also noticed that changes have happened as a result of customers sharing their experiences – there is now a school run time slot which didn’t exist when she first became a customer.  She used to find it very difficult to be at home for a morning or afternoon appointment when she knew she would be out for a while collecting her children from school.


Do you have anything to encourage other customers to get involved?

“Get your voices heard”.  Nana says she and other customers feel free to share their opinions, and being involved does make a difference.


A bit more about Nana…

Nana says she has set a high bar for her children, she wants them to be high achievers.  And she is a great role model to her children.  As well as her job, working towards her doctorate, going to the gym, taking the kids to schools and various after school clubs – Nana still makes time to work with Greatwell Homes!

And it looks like its paying off.  Nana’s eldest daughter wants to work in medicine when she is older.

Nana would also love to inspire other black women to be successful in academia.  She says that she has seen so few black women in lecturer and professor positions – the opportunities for promotion aren’t often offered to women.


Thank you Nana for giving us your time, experience and expertise.  And good luck with your future ambitions!


If you would like to find out about how you can get involved please email