Glasgow North West Citizens Advice Service
Charity registered in Scotland SC005641
We are a local charity that empowers over 4,500 people every year in Northwest Glasgow by ensuring their human rights and needs are met through our vital advice service. Our trained advisers and volunteers offer support ranging from ensuring people have access to benefits and immigration advice, to preventing homelessness, child poverty and reversing unfair dismissals at work. In 2019/20;
• We worked with 4,560 clients, 2,130 were people living below the Scottish Poverty Line. • 48% of clients identified as having a disability, ill health, or mental health condition. • We helped 630 families living in poverty. • 28% of clients were from a BAME background.
Our in-depth understanding of the systems and barriers facing isolated groups enable us to ensure no one is left behind. Our total client financial gains in 2019/20 were £6.7m and for each £1 spent on GNWCAB, we generate £9 in our local communities.
Our ambitious Youth Employability Project aims to recruit a trainer and mentor to support 60 young people with training and guaranteed employment. This project will be run across three cohorts focussed on school leavers. We will recruit groups facing barriers such as people living in poverty, lone parents, BAMEs, and those living with a disability or mental health condition. We expect to recruit from a diverse background that represents our community and for a minimum of 50% of the candidates to be from a protected characteristic under the 2010 Equality Act. This project is split into three parts; training for the young people, multichannel customer service and telephony, and guaranteed employment and further education opportunities. By supporting this project at 10%, the Digital Participation Charter Fund will contribute to creation of materials and ongoing support for participants.
We understand digital literacy to be an essential part of numerous jobs, particularly in the finance and third sector in the wake of Covid19, and will work on confidence and understanding of multichannel with the young people. The focus will be on how to deliver professional advice via phone, webchat and video call. GNWCAB has moved to providing the same level of advice remotely during lockdown using a multichannel approach through webchat, email, SMS, telephone and video call. Currently, GNWCAB runs a very successful volunteer programme, elements of which we will include in the training.
Aftercare will be given to each person for three months and long-lasting support with creating their CV and job searching. Assistive technology will be provided where needed, and ESOL classes will assist people on the project who do not speak English as a first language.
GNWCAB will work with partner organisations and the financial sector to ensure every young person on this project is guaranteed an interview for paid employment following completion of our training. Examples of organisations we have approached are banks, the Glasgow CAB network and other NGOs working in financial inclusion. We have established links with universities and colleges through our volunteer project and will use these to offer further education opportunities. We expect 90% of young people will be successful in moving to a positive destination through being matched to employment, further education or volunteering opportunities by our mentor.
Digital Transformation of materials completed
Dedicated Mentor and Trainer Recruited
3 Young Person cohorts Recruited and Trained
90% of young people matched to a positive destination (employment, training, further education, or volunteering opportunity)
6-week training programme for cost of living and financial advice, delivered in person and remotely 3-month Digital Champions training programme across all areas followed-up with 1:1 support and delivered in a blended method in-person and remotely
Two courses were delivered simultaneously, one for Digital Champions who wanted to specialise in financial advice to support people through the cost of living crisis, and another for general advice across various topics (benefits, housing, welfare, employment, immigration and consumer rights). These courses lasted for 3-months each and required trainees to contribute approximately 16 hours per week to group work and 1:1 practical support. The remainder of the time was made up completing the specially designed modules created by our project Coordinator to ensure digital learning was embedded throughout the training.
In addition, GNWCAB also delivered organisation-wide trainings covering:
• 3 trainings on Digital Skills and Online Essentials for Advisers – case management system, reports, 10to8 appointment booking system, online resources for benefits, debt, immigration and appeals • 1 Mental Health & Wellbeing course delivered alongside our partner organisation Lifelink Counselling Service • 8 trainings to our partner organisation Sense Scotland focussed on online rights and accessing disability benefits, energy, employment and immigration entitlements in a remote landscape.