Meet The Team

Carol

Manager
I was a self-employed family business owner for over 10 years, after a change in my circumstances in 2008 I joined Citizens Advice as it was then, as a volunteer. I completed my Adviser Training in 2008 and in 2011 I qualified as a Tribunal Representative. 
In 2011 I worked with Bryson Energy as a Welfare Rights and Energy adviser and I have now worked in the advice sector for 14 years gaining a wealth of knowledge and experience in areas such as General Advice, Debt Advice, Welfare Reform changes and Tribunal Representation, assisting local people to access information and benefits to make their lives easier.
I have loved my role as a Tribunal Representative and get so much job satisfaction from advocating on behalf of my clients. It is a wide and varied role and no two cases are ever the same which keeps things interesting.
After 6 years with Community Advice Lisburn & Castlereagh I have been offered the position of Manager.  and I look forward to continuing to working with and in the community.

Tony

Advice Co-ordinator

After a mixed bag of a career including teaching, working in the construction industry and wholesale, I decided that a new direction was again required.  Not knowing what this new direction was to be I started studying for a law degree during which time I started volunteering for Citizen's Advice thinking it might help me along an as yet undiscovered path.
It turns out it was in fact the undiscovered path and I have been there full time since 2016 as a Welfare Reform Adviser and Tribunal Representative.  I'm not just saying this because the boss will see it, it really is an amazing place to work.  Fantastic team of staff and volunteers and the chance to make significant improvements to people's lives on a daily basis, what more could you want.

Cathy

Generalist Adviser

I have worked for CALC for over 5 years now having started as a volunteer. Prior to this I worked in a firm of Solicitors for over 11 years. Whilst working full time I studied law for 9 years through the Open University and finally graduated with my law degree in 2017. I then began my time in CALC as a volunteer and was subsequently offered a trainee position before becoming a qualified Adviser. I am now also trained in tribunal representation, and I have also carried out various outreach sessions in the community.  I enjoy the fast-paced nature of this work; because rules and regulations constantly evolve, and it is essential that we continually keep up to date with changes with training, self-study and courses. I thrive when advocating on behalf of clients on challenging cases, and I am therefore delighted to work for Community Advice Lisburn & Castlereagh who make such a difference to our local community in the Lisburn & Castlereagh area.

George

Outreach and General Adviser

In my previous life, I worked in QUB School of Biology for 44 years as a Senior Research Technician and completed my Honours Degree as a part time mature student at Queen`s University. I was actively involved in the Unite Trade Union, where I was a representative, for 30 years and for 15 years I was branch treasurer. I also served as a Trustee of a QUB Pension Scheme for 15 years and have a keen interest in all things pension related. I was also a qualified Youth Leader and worked in cross community youth clubs in my spare time.
When I retired from QUB I undertook a course in SERC in Teaching Essential Skills to Adults and wanted to use the skills acquired in this course and my Trade Union experience to help people so I joined Citizens Advice Lisburn as a Volunteer Advisor and have been there for 11 years in a number of roles including Generalist Adviser, Pension Wise Adviser and now I am the Outreach Adviser and prior to Covid-19 I also carried out home visits for those unable to come to the office.
My time as a Pension Wise Advisor led to my interest in helping people understand their pensions, both occupational and the State Pensions as well. I find helping people to be very rewarding and I look forward to helping people in the Lisburn and Castlereagh for some years yet.

Laura

Generalist Adviser

I am a generalist adviser with Community Advice Lisburn and Castlereagh. I have recently completed my training for my OCN level 3 in generalist advice through the Law Centre.  I previously worked as a trained youth worker doing outreach and in youth centres, but decided it wasn't for me and went on to work in retail.
I have family working in community advice and they suggested I volunteer to see if I like it and instantly had an interest in it. I loved the training and I'm looking forward to expanding my knowledge and having a long-term career in the advice sector.

 

Miriam

Trainee Generalist Adviser

I have worked in various roles in the community, including, Community Care, Family Centers and Creches.  After completing HNC in working with children and families. 

Working as a trainee generalist adviser with Community Advice Lisburn and Castlereagh is completely different to anything I have done before. 

I enjoy the challenge and being able to give back to the community in a new way.  I look forward to completing my training and gaining the experience in the advice sector

 

Kathleen

Trainee Generalist Adviser

I have worked in the voluntary sector for almost fifteen years.  My journey started as a volunteer for Home-Start in 2008.  In the same year I became a Generalist Advisor with Andersonstown & Suffolk Citizens Advice Bureau.  This led to a role on a helpline providing support to those affected by domestic and sexual abuse.  Later my role evolved with Nexus, I became the helpline Outreach and Awareness Coordinator.  This included training and mentoring helpline volunteers.

My journey has come full circle, now providing generalist advice for Lisburn and Castlereagh Community Advice .

I have a keen interest in social justice, an avid reader and dog lover.  I enjoy spending my weekends with my family, normally visiting all the wonderful attractions that Northern Ireland has to offer…and Donegal!

 

Matthew

Volunteer

I am currently volunteering with Community Advice Lisburn and Castlereagh.

I joined Community Advice in October 2022 in search of a new challenge. My degree (from Queen’s University) was in Theology, so learning new things was a big factor in my decision to volunteer with CALC. Having lived in Lisburn all my life, I hope I can give back to the place where I grew up.

When I’m not in the center,  teaching piano either from home or out and about. 

 

 

Sarah

Volunteer

I am a full time law student with Ulster University.  I recently started volunteering with Community Advice Lisburn and Castlereagh to further my studies and support the local community.  My time as a volunteer with a solicitors and the children's law center led to my interest in helping people understand their rights.  I work in hospitality and in my spare time enjoy reading and playing hockey.  I have not been with CALC long but am really enjoying expanding my knowledge with an amazing team of staff and look forward to continuing to gain the knowledge and skill to fulfill the role of adviser.

 

 

Joanne

Trainee debt adviser

In my early career I worked in the voluntary & charity sector providing help and support to homeless adults.  I have also worked with young people, assisting them and teaching them the skills required to live independent lives.  I have found it very rewarding advocating on behalf of people.  I have worked with the insolvency & debt repayment sector.  I am happy to be given an opportunity to train as a debt adviser with Community Advice Lisburn and Castlereagh.   I look forward to completing the training and having a fulfilling career in debt advice with a charity organisation.

 

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