Citizens Advice Esher & District has helped hundreds of people since the Coronavirus lockdown began as it continues to offer its valuable service during this difficult time.
The local charity quickly mobilised its staff and volunteers to give one-to-one advice over the phone and via email across Elmbridge, after the lockdown began on 23 March.
The top issues the charity has helped with are applying for benefits, employment and housing. Enquiries relating to Universal Credit claims are up by 50% and there has been a 40% increase in employment issues as more people seek assistance with accessing financial support.
As the lockdown period has continued, advisers have been taking more calls about relationship and neighbour problems, consumer issues and, sadly, wills and inheritance.
Chief Executive Elaine Bissell said: ‘I’m so proud of our volunteers and staff who quickly rallied round to ensure no-one needs to face the many challenges of Covid-19 alone.
‘Delivering clear, concise advice on the phone or by email takes great skills and we have seen our team step up to new ways of working and new technology with amazing energy and dedication. I cannot thank them enough.
‘Citizens Advice was founded the day after World War Two was declared to support people at a time of national need. We are still here 80 years later to provide free, impartial, independent and confidential advice to anyone who needs it.
So if you’re in need don’t hesitate to pick up the phone or drop us a message, our volunteer advisers are ready and waiting to help.’
You can call the charity on 01372 464770 between 10:30am to 3:30pm Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, and between 1:00pm to 3:30pm on Wednesday.
Alternatively, to get in touch online head to ‘contact us’on this website, then scroll down to complete a short enquiry form.