Search

‘There is going to be significant demand for all our offices’ - warning over Citizens Advice volunteer shortfall as stalwart contribution of Judith Bews is hailed

PUBLISHED: 15:32 18 October 2017 | UPDATED: 15:32 18 October 2017

Judith Bews with Steve Scott-Greenard, advice co-ordinator or Citizens Advice Yarmouth and David Potten, action CEO for Norfolk Citizens Advice. She has clocked up 25 years voluntary service. Photo: Liz Coates

Judith Bews with Steve Scott-Greenard, advice co-ordinator or Citizens Advice Yarmouth and David Potten, action CEO for Norfolk Citizens Advice. She has clocked up 25 years voluntary service. Photo: Liz Coates

Archant

A self-confessed chatterbox was lost for words when colleagues arranged a surprise party to mark a volunteering milestone.

Such was the shock of being presented with flowers, a chunk of engraved glass, and having a room named after her that Judith Bews for a moment did not know what to say.

The 76-year-old has been a welcoming face at Citizens Advice in Stonecutters Way, Great Yarmouth, for 25 years - a contribution that was hailed at the offices with balloons and a buffet on Wednesday.

Steve Scott-Greenard, advice co-ordinator in Yarmouth, lead the tributes and applause describing her as “a stalwart.”

He said: “There’s nothing she does not know. We love having her here.”

Mrs Bews, who lives in Winterton and was a dinner lady at the village school, said she got involved after a speaker came to address the WI.

After attending an interview and undergoing training she found she loved the work, helping people to find their way out of difficult situations.

Some six years ago and after funding was withdrawn from the service she move on to the reception and still thoroughly enjoys it.

MORE: Universal Credit problems are pushing families into debt, says charity

“You came away feeling you had really accomplished something,” she said.

“Nowadays people that come in are a lot more informed because they can go online and research it. The problems used to be something that came out of the blue and people did not know anything about them.”

Of the surprise celebration she said; “I cannot believe it. I am just an ordinary mum and you do not expect anything like this to happen to you.”

Among those singing her praises was David Potten, acting CEO of Citizens Advice Norfolk.

He said Judith and people like her were the backbone of the organisation.

With many younger volunteers finding their way into work they needed older people to give stability and continuity.

However, with Universal Credit likely to be rolled out across the county the service was bracing itself for a flood of enquiries - and needed more volunteers to meet demand.

“If the experience in Yarmouth is anything to learn from there is going to be a significant demand for all our offices throughout Norfolk,” he added.

To find out about volunteering with Citizens Advice visit the website by clicking here.

Other News

Yesterday, 17:03

Preparations are being made to see if Great Yarmouth could hold four weekends of festive fun at Christmas time - at a provisional cost of £148,000.

Yesterday, 14:00

A college is searching for an experienced partner to manage and operate its three nurseries in Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth.

Yesterday, 12:00

The Lowestoft Friends group of East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) has set a date for its annual quiz night in aid of the charity.

Yesterday, 11:57

A Norfolk road was closed for hours to clean up spilt fuel after a panel van and a bus collided.

Most Read

Thu, 08:16

A boys’ haircut dubbed the ‘meet me at McDonald’s’ has fallen foul of uniform rules at a Yarmouth high school

Read more
Mon, 11:46

Police have confirmed more than 30 cars were vandalised in the North Yarmouth area over the weekend.

Read more
Norfolk Police
Wed, 14:07

The family of a Gorleston mother-of-four have paid an emotional tribute to her after she died when she was involved in a collision with a motorcycle in Bradwell last week.

Read more
James Paget University Hospital
Tue, 11:57

Dumping six bags of rubbish next to a green recycling bin has cost a Gorleston man £150 in court and clear-up costs.

Read more
Tue, 16:49

One member of a gang who stole nitrous oxide canisters meant for “life saving” surgery has been jailed for more than two years.

Read more
Norwich Crown Court

Local Weather

Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 1°C

min temp: -1°C

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the Great
Yarmouth Mercury

e-edition today

Subscribe

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter