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Rural Cambs Citizens Advice Bureau covers East Cambridgeshire, Fenland and Huntingdonshire

The main offices are at:
Ely
Huntingdon
St Neots
Wisbech

We are funded to advise people resident or working within this, or the immediately surrounding area.  Please use the link below to check that you qualify.

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If you are outside our area please try the Citizens Advice search to find an alternative.

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Volunteering

We need new volunteers every year to help us meet the demand for advice.

We have opportunities for people to train as gateway assessors, advisers, trustees, administrators, social policy campaigners and more. With so many different roles available you should be able to find a way to get involved. Find out more about what is in it for you if you join the world's largest advice network.

Read more about what each role entails.  Click on an item in the list and details will appear below it:
 

June 2016 :    We are currently looking for volunteer Gateway Assessors and Advisors at our offices in Huntingdon and St Neots.

 

Adviser
Administrator
Campaigner
Gateway Assessor
IT Support Co-ordinator
Publicity Officer
Money Mates
Receptionist
Specialist Form Filler
Trustee Board Member

 Being an adviser is a very varied role. As an adviser you will:

  • interview clients at drop-in sessions and appointments in the bureau, over the phone and at outreach sessions;
  • give information from the CAB electronic information system and other sources;
  • give advice in explaining the choices and consequences the client faces;
  • give practical help by writing letters, making phone calls, completing forms, doing calculations and possibly even representing clients at tribunals;
  • refer clients to other agencies if they are better placed to help;
  • keep records of all clients' cases;
  • prevent future problems by identifying issues that affect a lot of clients.

You do not need any particular qualifications or experience to train as an adviser. All sorts of people are CAB advisers. You need to:

  • be good at listening;
  • be able to work in a team;
  • be able to read and write English, and do basic maths;
  • be open-minded and non-judgmental;
  • enjoy helping people.

Support every step of the way

Advisers do not need to know it all! We provide all trainee advisers with a comprehensive accredited training programme that will give you the skills you need to deliver a high quality service to clients. Our up-to-the-minute electronic information system contains most of the information you will need when advising clients.

You will not be left alone after you are trained. There will always be a more experienced adviser, who will give you support, advice and guidance.

All advisers are insured by CAB in case mistakes are made.

Once you have qualified as a Generalist Adviser, you will have the opportunity to develop further skills and increase the depth and breadth of your knowledge.

Administrators ensure that bureau systems run smoothly. Good support is essential for the running of any organisation, and CAB is no different. There are many different administrative roles - we can match your skills and time available to the bureau's needs. Tasks may include:

  • using spreadsheets, databases and word processing packages;
  • maintaining and developing administrative systems;
  • stock control of leaflets and materials and updating information;
  • helping to arrange events;
  • receiving and sending faxes, mail, email and telephone calls;
  • taking notes and minutes at meetings.

Campaigners, or Social Policy Co-ordinators, use information from problems brought to the bureau, by clients, to help bring about real change, by influencing local and national policy. This is a flexible role, which can sometimes be partly carried out away from the bureau and outside opening hours. It can involve:

  • completing and collating evidence forms that record information about the problems clients experience;
  • identifying and raising issues in the bureau and at meetings;
  • training staff and volunteers in spotting particular issues and completing evidence forms;
  • conducting research and writing reports on local issues;
  • media campaigning and liaising with other bureaux and agencies to provide a voice for clients.

For more on social policy work, please visit our Campaigning page.

Gateway assessors help clients get the right help in the fastest time possible. They assess people’s needs, either face-to-face or over the phone, and identify the most appropriate course of action. That might be self-help information, referral to a specialist organisation or an appointment with a CAB adviser. As a gateway assessor you would:

  • greet clients and explain the gateway assessment process
  • explore the client’s problem(s) and situation
  • assess the risk/urgency of the client’s issue and their ability to deal with the problem themselves
  • identify the next step that needs to be taken
  • summarise the content of the interview for the client and explain what happens next
  • ensure clients know they can return if necessary
  • update the database, completing the gateway assessment screens.

Specific qualifications or experience are not required to train for the role. You need to:

  • be good at listening
  • have a good manner when talking to people
  • have basic computing skills
  • be open minded and non-judgmental
  • enjoy helping people.

The Citizens Advice service is increasingly taking advantage of developments in IT. As an IT support volunteer you may be involved in a variety of areas, depending on your skills and the time you have available, for example:

  • supporting and training users in day-to-day use of IT systems;
  • troubleshooting hardware and software problems;
  • maintaining and developing networks;
  • designing spreadsheets, databases and websites.

The role of Publicity Officer is to publicise the work of the CAB and to let people know the benefits of volunteering at the CAB

Main duties and responsibilities include:

  • Going to external organisations to promote the CAB - this could be by giving a talk or speaking to the manager and leaving posters, leaflets etc.
  • Revamping current publicity materials;
  • Writing press releases;
  • Developing links with the local media;
  • Writing a bureau newsletter.

Specific personal skills and qualities that a publicity worker needs are a friendly and outgoing disposition, excellent communication skills, both oral and written, an ability to communicate with people at all levels and to develop links in the community.

Receptionists are the public face of the CAB. They are the main link between the public and the bureau. This role would suit people who are methodical, organised and patient. Basic IT skills are essential.
As a receptionist, you would:

  • greet clients and make them feel comfortable;
  • answer phone calls and record client details;
  • provide information on the CAB service to clients;
  • manage the waiting room;
  • keep records.

The role of Specialist Form Filler is to take referrals from Generalist Advisers and Caseworkers in order to complete the comprehensive applications for some welfare benefits on behalf of the client.

The requirements for this role are to:

  • be a good listener;
  • be able to work as part of a team;
  • pay attention to detail;
  • have excellent communication skills, both written and oral.

You will be interviewing clients by appointment and updating client records.

Full training and ongoing support will be provided.

All Citizens Advice Bureaux are independent charities, governed by their own board of trustees, who are ultimately responsible for the quality and range of the service. Day-to-day control is delegated to the bureau manager, but trustees:

  • set the overall direction and support the development of the bureau;
  • ensure the bureau meets the needs of the local community and the Citizens Advice membership standards;
  • employ CAB staff and control bureau finances;
  • earn and retain the respect of important and influential people and organisations in the community, including funding bodies;
  • ensure the bureau complies with relevant laws.

Bureau trustee boards need people from all sections of the community with a wide range of different skills, experience and perspectives.

Trustee boards tend to meet in the evenings, making this a flexible role, which trustees often fit around a full-time job. A full induction into the trustee board's role and responsibilities will be provided.

Join the Making Money Count team…

Do you like meeting people? Can you spare a few hours or more each month? Do you live in Fenland?

We are recruiting now for Money Mates and Money Mentors:

Money Mates

Money Mates provide practical, friendly help on the New Horizons bus, at drop-ins and ad-hoc events. Work could include welcoming visitors and explaining what we have to offer, supporting web browsing, linking people to more in-depth CAB advice, and publicity, admin, and survey work. You could be a Money Mate if you have just a few hours or more to spare a month.

Money Mentors

Money Mentors specialise as Financial Capability Advisers - seeing people on a one to one basis, helping them think through choices and their consequences and supporting them to take action where needed; and Money Coaches - working with people over time and supporting them through change. Money Coaches can also train to deliver sessions to small groups. You could be a Money Mentor if you can commit to a minimum of 3 hours per week for at least 6 months.

Volunteering for Making Money Count gives you the chance to join a friendly team, learn new skills, receive valuable training, and help others in the Fenland community.

Making Money Count is a £1million project awarded by the Big Lottery Fund to Roddons Housing Association, Fenland District Council, Rural Cambs Citizens Advice Bureau and CHS Group

 

If any of the roles appeal to you please complete our Volunteer Enquiry Form.

It will not commit you.  At this stage you are just registering an interest.