Volunteers sought for advice service

PUBLISHED: 17:08 19 October 2006 | UPDATED: 21:22 29 May 2010

VOLUNTEERS are being sought by an advice centre, which is dealing with a record number of enquiries. Last year Dunmow CAB, based at Uttlesford District Council offices in the High Street, dealt with 1860 enquiries for advice and it anticipates having to h

VOLUNTEERS are being sought by an advice centre, which is dealing with a record number of enquiries.

Last year Dunmow CAB, based at Uttlesford District Council offices in the High Street, dealt with 1860 enquiries for advice and it anticipates having to handle even more with the population growth around the town.

Just in the first six months of this year the CAB has dealt with 1055 enquiries, which should see them deal with more than 2000 over the course of the year.

Bureau manager John Willoughby said: "The planned growth of the Dunmow area presents a particular challenge for us. We currently only operate from the Dunmow offices only two days a week and we need to increase our services significantly to meet demand.

"We need to recruit more volunteers to train as advisors or to help in raising additional funds to ensure continuation of the service."

Because of demand the service is looking to raise £5000 to buy a self-help touch screen monitor worth £5000 to enable clients to access advice without having to see an advisor.

But in the meantime, the CAB is hoping to recruit five extra volunteers to enable the service to open for at least three days a week, and ideally five.

It is currently open every Tuesday and Thursday between 10am and 2pm, manned by at least three advisors per session.

It takes about six months to train as an advisor based on being able to volunteer for one day a week, although this can be shorter if the volunteer has a legal background.

Full support is offered during training and when volunteers start advising clients they have the guidance of an experienced advisor.

There is no age limit and the service's oldest volunteer is 79.

Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer or just wanting to know more should call Mr Willoughby on 01799 526557.

- DUNMOW CAB will be holding its AGM on Monday October 30 at 7.30pm at The Maltings in Dunmow.

During the meeting the official receiver will give a talk on bankruptcy - one of the biggest issued clients seek advice on in the Uttlesford area.

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