This morning, my shower stopped working. This was, to put it mildly, a bit of an inconvenience. However as a result I have now made a really good, and hopefully a long term, professional acquaintance.

About six months ago, whilst volunteering for the Personal Support Unit at the Cardiff Civil Justice Centre, I met a client who was under threat of eviction as he had fallen into arrears on his mortgage. He was accompanied by his brother in law, who was there to give him help and support. Unfortunately, they were finding it difficult to navigate forms and court processes in order to stave off the threat of eviction. I helped them to fill out the relevant forms, accompanied them to court and then explained what had happened after the hearing was over. Essentially, the court gave the chap who was at risk of eviction more time to get up to date with his debts to the mortgage company – which I heard today he’d been able to do. Oh, and we had a cuppa while we were working out what needed to happen next. It’s amazing how much work gets done with a good hot cup of tea or coffee to accompany it!

It’s not always a good thing when someone says that they recognise you. However, my quip about it probably being on ‘Crimewatch’ obviously jogged his memory, and the story spilled out. Suffice to say that right now I feel like I’ve done some good in the world, and it’s come full circle as I now have a shower that works , and a massive smile on my face to boot.

If anyone finds themselves cast adrift in the sea of jargon and confusion that is the civil legal process (basically anything except criminal cases!) then get in touch with the Personal Support Unit on (029) 20343685 and the wonderful volunteers there would be happy to assist. I can’t say “we” anymore, as I’m off to work for the Co-operative Legal Services shortly, and so will be unable to continue my voluntary work there for the foreseeable future.

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