Citizens Advice Merton & Lambeth (CAML) is an independent charity that provides information and advice to help people who live, work or study in Merton or Lambeth to resolve problems.
CAML is part of a national network of over 300 local charities that deliver advice across the country, overseen by a national framework provided by Citizens Advice.
We share the over-arching aims, values and principles of Citizens Advice to:
- provide the advice people need for the problems they face, and
- improve the policies and practices that affect peoples’ lives
and we aim to do this through:
- providing information and advice to everyone on their rights and responsibilities;
- equipping our clients with the knowledge, skills and confidence to take control of their lives;
- enabling our clients to take informed decisions to address their problems; and
- focusing on our clients as individuals who may have a wide range of problems.
How we started
Mitcham Citizens Advice Bureau was one of the first two hundred Citizens Advice Bureaux that opened in September 1939 after war was declared. The bureau volunteers then helped with rationing problems, tracing missing persons, arranging evacuation and helping with war damage claims.
How we work
Now the most common problems our clients have are benefits, debt, housing and employment. Food bank referrals have replaced ration books. Clients can access our service face-to-face, by phone, via email or web-chat. Some clients are empowered to solve problems by themselves; those requiring more support receive advice and, if necessary, casework.
CAML is one of the busiest CABs in London. In 2013-4 we helped about 2,000 clients a month. This year, 2014-5, that has increased to nearly 3,000 per month.
By offering advice we aim to bring about positive changes in peoples’ lives. This ranges from measurable outcomes, such as increasing household income or getting a refund for a client, through to wider improvements, such as better health and family relationships. We also aim to achieve policy changes for our local community and nationally – find out more about our Campaigning for Change work.
We are proud to work in the challenging environment of London in 2015. All our advice is free, independent, confidential and impartial. It is an essential part of what we do that we value diversity, promote equality and challenge discrimination.
Download our 2013-14 annual report.
We are governed by a Board of Trustees that oversees our strategic direction, manages our finances, ensures we comply with the law and monitors standards.
Meet our Senior Management Team.
We have a wide range of administrative and specialist staff – current vacancies are listed here.
Our trained volunteers are essential to the quality service we provide. People volunteer with CAML for many different reasons, but one thing that unites them all is that they find it challenging, rewarding and varied – find out more about becoming a volunteer.