Big Lottery boost is ‘fantastic news’

Citizens Advice Broxtowe: District manager Sue Maslowska, Service Manager Eastwood David Cook and service manager Beeston, Sally Bestwick.
Citizens Advice Broxtowe: District manager Sue Maslowska, Service Manager Eastwood David Cook and service manager Beeston, Sally Bestwick.

Eastwood Citizens’ Advice Bureau (CAB) is celebrating news that it will benefit from a crucial £350,000 Big Lottery grant.

The cash is for Broxtowe CAB, which has offices in Eastwood and Beeston, will mean it can help 5,000 more people seeking advice and support.

It is a landmark for the organisation, which has struggled for cash in recent years and was almost forced to halve its hours after Notts County Council cut its funding by an enormous 70 per cent.

But this recent boost – described as ‘fantastic news’ by manager Sue Maslowska – has given it an enormous boost.

Ms Maslowska said: “It’s fantastic news. We’re just delighted. With demands for our service higher than ever, getting the right advice at the right time can be a lifeline for people.”

The Lottery money will allow the bureaux to take on nine new staff, train another 30 volunteers and work alongside two key local organisations to improve its services.

Ms Maslowska said the money would also help volunteers provide specialist help in welfare benefits.

“Current services are struggling to keep up with the increasing demand in the types of problems people are facing,” she said.

“Welfare reform changes are creating many challenges for our clients and this funding will enable us to provide specialist help,” she said.

The money was awarded from the Big Lottery Advice Services Transition Fund, which is designed to help local advice providers come together to deliver a better service.

The advice bureaux will be working with two key partners – Broxtowe Women’s Project, which supports women suffering domestic violence, and Hope Nottingham, which runs a community support cafe serving disadvantaged people.

In 2011 when Broxtowe CAB’s funding was cut, it was saved at the 11th hour by a national Government grant of £80,000 and has received other smaller grants keeping it afloat since.