South Gloucestershire CAB News
The Advice Services Transition Fund has recently been announced by the Big Lottery Fund. This is designed to help advice agencies work together to improve services in their areas and become more financially viable. South Gloucestershire CAB is looking forward to working with our partner advice agencies to see how we can deliver better outcomes for our clients and demonstrate the value of what we do.
However, it isn’t going to be able to replace the legal aid funding for debt advice that we’ll be losing next year
Hundreds of families in South Gloucestershire will shortly no longer be able to get free debt advice funded by Legal Aid. Over the next few months, the CAB’s contract with the Legal Services Commission to provide debt advice will be winding down. The government has decided to withdraw legal aid funding for debt advice, and the CAB will be losing up to £45,000 a year as a result.
Free debt advice will still be available from the bureau, but with fewer staff and resources, we will find it harder to meet demand, and waiting times for appointments will lengthen. So, if you need debt advice and are living on a low income, do get in touch now as our specialist staff can offer you an appointment very soon.
We are delighted that Susan Oldfield and Mike Felgate will be joining the staff team from June. Susan will be co-ordinating debt advice in the bureau and Mike will be leading welfare benefits work. Demand for advice in these two areas is growing rapidly, up by 25% over this time last year, so Susan and Mike’s assistance is very much appreciated.
The bureau’s Trustee Board is seeking new members to strengthen its expertise in marketing, digital media, IT, finance and law. Please have a look at our Volunteer With Us page for more details.
From Thursday 9th April, the Bureau Offices in Staple Hill will be moving across the road to 96 High Street, Staple Hill, BS16 5HL.
The South Gloucestershire bureau has been awarded £70,000 of funding from the Advice Services Fund to expand our debt and benefit advice services and open out new offices in Staple Hill. We are recruiting to two new posts at the moment and the new service will be operating in the next few months.