Help with adulting for youth

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HELPFUL: Mid Canterbury Citizens Advice Bureau volunteer Nikita Begbie is welcoming a new website to help youth in the adult world.
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Mid Canterbury Citizens Advice Bureau volunteer Nikita Begbie is welcoming a new bureau website to help youth with the sometimes difficult task of living in the adult world.

Youth Tool Kete- at youth.cab.org.nz – offers tips and lists resources around a wide range of tasks including going flatting, getting ID, starting a job, buying a car, studying and budgeting, and issues such as encountering problems at work, traffic offences and wellbeing.

Begbie, 24, said the website was ‘‘a very practical tool’’.

‘‘Going to the main (bureau) website can be a bit overwhelming, to have to go through all the website to find what you are looking for. The youth website has narrowed down the path to finding what you are looking for,’’ Begbie said.

Mid Canterbury Citizens Advice Bureau co-ordinator Sarah Clifford said information on the website was compiled following key issues raised by CAB’s youth clients.

‘‘Inquiries from youth are increasing each year,’’ Clifford said.

A nationwide Citizens Advice Bureau report had revealed the most common issues young people were seeking the bureau’s help with. It showed some of the key problems and obstacles youth were facing.

In addition, data captured by the Mid Canterbury bureau showed since it opened in 2020, most inquiries from youth had been in the areas of employment and business, legal and government, and community.

Begbie is the youngest volunteer at the Mid Canterbury bureau.

‘‘It’s a whole lot of fun here. We have so many people come in with a problem. It can be a challenge at time to find the information. It’s a bit like a scavenger hunt,’’ Begbie said.

‘‘Some people come in knowing exactly what they want and are in and out, others it can take 15 minutes or so to help them find what they are looking for help with. We can help change lives, so it’s a heavy responsibility, but I feel proud of what I do,’’ she said.

She said she had enjoyed helping some of her fellow volunteers build their confidence with computers.

‘‘The good thing about our team of volunteers is that we all bring in different perspectives such as legal knowledge, or an understanding of the disability, LGBTQIA+ or youth community,’’ Begbie said.

‘‘All the information we pass on has to either be from a government department, or our own files to ensure it is correct,’’ Begbie said.

* Citizens Advice Bureau offer free and confidential services through face-to-face interviews at Community House, 44 Cass St, Ashburton Monday to Friday 10am-1pm. Phone 928-8761, or 0800 367 222 when the office is closed. The new youth website is at youth.cab.org.nz