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Victory Report: Advice centres

Victory Report: Advice centres
Transmission details
31 Oct 1979
Victory Special report on advice - giving agencies: what they do and why they are necessary with interviews with representatives from different types of agencies. Track 1- 1. Citizens Advice Bureaus, over 750 nationally. In Portsmouth 16000 enquiries a year. 2. Neighbourhood Advice Centres, community based. 3. Other advice centres, 120 consumer centres, 25 law centres, counselling for young people and over 150 housing aid centres, all since 1970. Types of problems and how they can be dealt with. 1. MRS MAYER, runs three CABs in Portsmouth, most enquiries concern housing and supplementary benefit and consumer problems, but there may be further underlying problem, diagnostic service. Have specialist advisers to whom people can be referred. 2. NEIGHBOURHOOD ADVICE CENTRES - B WILLIAMS, Chairman of Community Advice Centre in Portsmouth, problems concern supplementary benefits, consumer problems, multi-problem cases of separation. 3. FOCUS 230, LEIGH PARK - BETTY BELL - 25 people in three hours. Problems - supplementary benefit, housing, also underlying problems eg battering. All agencies 1-3 stress need to help people find real problem. 4. HAMPSHIRE AID CENTRE AT CIVIC OFFICES - specialist advice run by local authority. TONY QUAIL - Housing Aid Officer, main problems, homelessness, either threatened with homelessness or marriage break-up, main help is not to give advice but provide housing. Part of Housing Department, but most of clients come from private sector while Housing Department deals mainly with 27 thousand council houses and tenants. 5. METHODIST CHURCH, BOTLEY DRIVE, LEIGH PARK, off the record advice centre offering shoulder to cry on for young people. Organiser: GERALDINE JOHNS, began previous December. Problems: relationships, loneliness, sexual problems, help clients to come to terms with them. Possible accusations of spoonfeeding clients in advice centres, is this sapping sense of responsiblity. GERALDINE JOHNS, feels early advice may nip problems in the bud. B WILLIAMS - part of ethos of advice giving is that it is educative therefore not spoonfeeding. BETTY BELL, have to prove to people that they can cope, wants to run course to show this. Track 2- WHY ARE CENTRES NECESSARY. MRS MAYER [CAB, so much more legislation]. BETTY BELL, system has become so much more complex - jargon. Difficulties in finding out about benefits. B WILLIAMS, advice giving must become more important as complexity of legislation increases. Advice giving is mainly done by volunteers. GERALDINE JOHNS, volunteered becasue sees need for informal setting away from statutory authority for discussion of problems. Patience, understanding, tolerence and awareness of own prejudices needed. RESOURCES needed: get money from Social Services, FE, gift from IBM and others Since 1968 can apply for Urban Aid [75 percent from Government, 25 percent from Local Authority, but not easy to get, limited amounts available. CABs get 9 thousand pounds from local authority, but never sure of money from year to year. Growing need for advice points to more professionalism, but are popular because are not professional and are independent. Local government advice has greater resources, these could be used by independent agencies. [Box 6]
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Misc. notes
Gauge:-1/8 inch tape
Production company
Radio Victory
1 tape


Jane Young
Mrs Mayer; B Williams; Betty Bell; Tony Quail; Geraldine Johns

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