Volunteers at Citizens Advice Reigate & Banstead really are committed to their community. They give time to helping people directly but also to meeting strict training requirements. They study direct and online throughout the year and attend full District Training Days every 6 months.
It’s a challenge, but learning together is fun too.
Last week’s Training Day at Reigate Baptist Church offered a wide menu (and we don’t just mean the range of pastries John generously donated to get everyone off to a good start).
First we heard from Helen at Surrey Welfare Rights Unit about the complexities of applying for Personal Independence Payment, a common cause of problems for people living with disability.
Then Witness Service area manager Jo explained how she and her colleagues aim to build the confidence of witnesses who often know little about the court and are vulnerable as consequence. Since 2015 the Witness Service has been managed by national Citizens Advice.
Third, Zalika from Divorce and Separation Centre spoke about an alternative to court as a way for separating or divorcing couples to reach a settlement. We have seen the number of relationship problems rise in recent years just as for many access to the justice system has become more problematic.
Last speaker was David, for many years a CARBS volunteer at Banstead. David is also a trustee at Dyscover the charity that provides long-term support for stroke and brain injury patients. He gave us a valuable insight into the charity but also the experience of many smaller health service providers.
CARBS in the Community
Citizens Advice Reigate & Banstead is an independent local charity at the heart of a network of community groups. We offer free, confidential advice to everyone in the borough, whoever they are, whatever their problem.