IMPORTANT NOTICE – NISHKAM ADVICE & ADVOCACY PROJECT/SERVICE CLOSURE
The Nishkam Advice & Advocacy Centre is funded by the Big Lottery Fund with a grant of £268k to deliver a 5 year project to help the local community to address matters relating to Welfare Benefits, Debt and Housing issues. Through this project staff, volunteers & steering group members have shown dedication and expertise to serve and support over 1000 cases to date, achieving financial outcomes exceeding £3 million, often under challenging circumstances. It is fair to say we have managed to uplift individuals who felt powerless to resolve matters themselves, improve the quality of their lives, offering dignity, empowerment and self-worth. This project will end 31st March 2018 (we are trying to secure continuation funding from Big Lottery Fund, this work is still on going)
Sadly we began to phase down our services to reduce our caseload from 14th November 2017
Wednesday 17/01/2018 was the last drop in that Nishkam IAG was taking in for new cases and existing clients. We are no longer taking cases from new or existing clients. So anyone who has been calling in /coming in has been informed that from November 2017 that the IAG project is closing. If you have had your benefit refused please remember that there are strict time limits and you will need to seek alternative help elsewhere as soon as possible as we are unable to take the case regardless of whether you are a new or an existing client.
Thank you for your understanding and co-operation, if we are unable to help you we will do our best to signpost you to other service providers and will keep you updated on the progress of continuation funding.
Welcome To IAG Services
Nishkam Information, Advice and Guidance (Nishkam IAG) offers free, impartial and confidential advice and advocacy to county court and tribunal level in:
• Debt and money advice
• Employment Law
• Housing Law
• Welfare Benefits and Social Security Law
Funded by the Big Lottery & Lloyds TSB Foundation we provide:
• Outreach services through our Birmingham Community Advice Project
• Drop-in and appointment services based at the Nishkam Centre through our Nishkam Advice & Advocacy Project
We are members of Advice UK which is the largest support network for free, independent advice centres.
Our team is made up of a solicitor, paralegals and caseworkers with over 40 years combined experience between them offering a very high quality specialist level service to clients.
Debt and money advice
We are able to provide free advice, representation and advocacy services to court level for individuals in most aspects of debt and money advice including:
- Budgeting advice
- Options on how to deal with your debts
- Negotiating with creditors on your behalf
- Assistance with filling out court forms relating to money matters
- Assistance with filling out Bankruptcy Petitions
- Disputing liability for debts
This service is offered under both the Reaching Communities and Birmingham Community Advice Projects.
We are able to provide free advice, representation and advocacy services to Tribunal level for individuals in all aspects of employment law including:
• Contracts of employment
• Unpaid wages
• Advice on grievance or disciplinary matters
• Redundancy & TUPE
• Making a claim in the Employment Tribunal
• Discrimination because of sex, age, race, religion, disability, pregnancy, maternity, sexual orientation , and marriage.
• Harassment and Victimisation
• Human Rights matters
Our adviser has a strong track record in providing advocacy for individuals in employment tribunal and employment appeal cases.
We are able to provide free advice, representation and advocacy services to court level for individuals in all aspects of housing law including:
• Rent arrears
• Possession proceedings and eviction notices
• Housing disrepair
• Anti-social behaviour
• Applications for housing
Our housing solicitor has extensive experience in all matters relating to housing.
Welfare Benefits and Social Security Law
We are able to provide free advice, representation and advocacy services to tribunal level for individuals in all aspects of welfare benefits and social security law including:
• Maximising income through welfare benefits
• Making benefit applications on behalf of the client
• Backdating claims
• Suspensions and overpayments
To name a few we have covered appeals in:
• Employment and Support Allowance
• Disability Living Allowance
• Income Support and Incapacity Benefit
• Attendance Allowance
We also have a strong track record in representing clients before the Upper Tier Tribunal.
Opening and closing hours
Monday to Friday between 9.00am to 5.00pm – by appointment (0121 515 4229)
Drop-in sessions: Every Wednesday 9.30am – 1.00pm – No appointment needed
Our aim and commitment to you
We aim to offer our clients a high quality advice, representation and advocacy service.
We will represent your interests and maintain confidentiality of your case.
We will explain the legal work that may be required and the prospects of success based on the balance of probabilities.
We will endeavour to avoid using legal jargon when writing to you.
We will send you copies of all important correspondence and letters.
We will try to return your telephone calls on a timely basis.
We will try to provide appointments to you to attend our offices without any undue delay.
We will update you by telephone / email / in writing with the progress of your case regularly.
We will advise you of any changes in the law.
The Nishkam Civic Association is committed to equal opportunities; we provide an independent and confidential service to all irrespective of disability, age, gender, colour, religion and sexual orientation. We also ensure that all referral agencies also have similar policies in force.
Volunteers are seen as one of the most essential, unique and invaluable components of the Nishkam Civic Association.
They assist with co-ordinating projects and events, delivering training and education, and offering guidance and support for the local, national and global community.
From time to time we will recruit volunteers to help us in delivering our service in debt, welfare benefits, housing and employment law to the diverse communities.
As part of their training and development they will assist us on casework files including doing research, observing interviews and advice given, drafting case arguments, observing cases in the county court and tribunal.
In the case of sitting on client interviews in observance of the caseworker we will seek your permission beforehand.
Please note that all volunteers sign a confidentiality agreement and have to maintain the highest of standards in preserving confidentiality of client information and data at all times.
Address: Nishkam Civic Association
6 Soho Road
Telephone: 0121 515 4229
Fax: 0121 515 0009