05:32AM, Wednesday 27 November 2013
Demand for help from the Maidenhead Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) has never been higher and is likely to increase according its new chairman.
Derek Wilson has been elected taken on the position for a second time.
His first, eight year tenure as chairman ended in 2008.
“We are seeing an increase in activity which is a great shame, but on the other hand, we're here to help,” he said.
The 52-year-old has also been a Royal Borough councillor for the Oldfield ward and sits on the board of Housing Solutions.
He pointed to the ‘worrying’ increase in people’s getting into financial difficulties with pay-day loan companies and the growth of the Open Kitchen.
Charity representative, Nigel Cohen, shocked the audience at the CAB’s AGM on Thursday, November 28, when he said it now feeds more than 150 families in Maidenhead every week .
“At one time we would have never seen that in Maidenhead but times are particularly difficult at the moment,” said Cllr Wilson.
"People seem to think that the Royal Borough is extremely well off but there are areas where people are struggling.”
He also revealed plans to extend the service to Windsor town centre.
The Maidenhead CAB already provides a outreach service in Dedworth two days a week but feels there is sufficient demand to extend that into the town centre.
Despite the tough times, the new chairman was keen to point out the work of the organisation’s volunteers, who give up their time to advise more than 3,000 people every year.
"People would be amazed at their dedication,” he said
"Without their level of service and commitment a lot of people just wouldn't receive the help and advice they do.”
He added the CAB was always on the look out for new volunteers and donations to keep the service going.
Call 01628 674842 or visit www. maidenheadcab.org.uk for information.
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