Welfare & Benefits Advice

The Ely Centre Welfare and Advice service established over 7 years ago is one of the most important approaches we use to improve the immediate difficulties and obstacles many victims and survivors are experiencing.

When an individual experiences bereavement, loss and the effects of troubles related trauma, it can be difficult to engage in counselling if there are immediate financial or other concerns.

A secure and confidential service was requested as many members were reluctant to use other advice centres due to issues around trust.

The welfare service also aims to maximise household income.

Aims of the Ely Centres Welfare Service

The aims of the Ely Centre welfare service are twofold:

  • To provide free, impartial, confidential advice and information by a trained and experienced adviser who has knowledge and experience of the effects of grief & trauma on an individual.
  • To identify social policy issues which may affect our client group and lobby for change.

Provision of information, advice & assistance on all welfare advice issues including:

  • Social Security benefits
  • Benefit checks and calculations
  • Completion of benefit forms
  • Housing benefit
  • VSS
  • Miscellaneous

We can help you to review or appeal social security decisions; help you to prepare your case and we can accompany you to an Appeal Tribunal.

We also provide talks/information workshops on aspects of welfare reform/social security benefits for our own members and for other victims/survivors groups.

Social Policy work

We report on issues or changes which may have an effect on victims/survivors and lobby for change by:

  • Raising issues with relevant bodies & government to effect change
  • Reporting issues to Advice NI
  • Providing feedback to relevant government Consultations

Skills and experience to help you

All Advisers have completed:

  • Accredited Adviser Training Programme with CAB or LAW Centre NI or
  • Successfully completed Tribunal Representation Course or
  • Many years’ experience in the field of Benefit Advice and information within The Social Security Agency

Memberships and Partnerships

The Ely Centre is a member of Advice NI & the Law Centre NI.

In recent years we have established a highly effective and beneficial working partnerships with the Victims and Survivors Service, Veterans UK and the UDR Aftercare Service - Enniskillen Branch, along with a wide range of Military Charities to ensure eligible individuals are kept informed of any assistance & support they are entitled to receive.

If you would like to refer to this service please drop into the centre, give us a call, or fill in the service referral form which should only take a few minutes.