Experienced solicitor becomes a trustee at Citizens Advice Gosport
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Solicitor Patricia Wakeford is drawing upon her wealth of legal and medical experience as she takes on a role at Gosport Citizens Advice Bureau.
Patricia, a dual-qualified solicitor and midwife, who is a clinical negligence specialist at BL Claims Solicitors, has become a trustee at the Citizens Advice Bureau, in Pavilion Way.
Patricia’s role is behind-the-scenes; working with other trustees to ensure the bureau is run efficiently and is financially sound.
The service provides free, confidential and unbiased advice on a range of subjects, including debt, benefits, housing, law, employment and discrimination.
Patricia, who lives in Havant, said: “As trustees we have to ensure that we have a regular stream of funding which is quite difficult as there is a lot of competition from other charities.
“I did not realise what a fantastic organisation Citizen's Advice Gosport is until I started work as a trustee and Gosport is one area that really benefits from this service.
“The help that can be given to people is invaluable. It is often giving people information or signposting them to other resources, even if it is a website where people can get the information they need to manage their issue themselves.
“If the bureau starts getting several complaints on the same theme, the team can raise the issue to a higher level than a person would be able to do on their own and often get really good results.
“The trustees are from a range of backgrounds and, as the only lawyer, the legal knowledge can be very helpful and being a nurse also helps me relate to people in the team. Working with the many volunteers has been truly inspiring. They give up their time because they want to help their clients as much as is possible.
“It gives me a broad view of what’s happening in the bureau and how we can help people.”
Patricia’s previous voluntary work has included being a school governor and mentoring teenage girls for The Girls Network.
She added: “I am really enjoying this new challenge of working with Citizens Advice Gosport. It is such a worthwhile organisation and I am very pleased that I am involved.”
For more information about Patricia and her work, click here.
For more information about Gosport Citizens Advice Bureau, click here.
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