The Team at Merton Centre for Independent Living 


Find out a little more about our front line team below: 


Lyla Adwan-Kamara - CEO

Lyla is CEO of Merton CIL and has been since August 2012. She has a background in marketing, research, and international development. Lyla lives in Merton with her husband and two children under 5.


Stuart Butler - Service Manager

Stuart is our Service Manager. He joined the advice team from Citizens Advice where he worked as an outreach advisor. Stuart also has an extensive background in advocacy. He read classics at Kings and has a degree in Law from Birkbeck, as well as Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice from the College of Law. 


John Kelly - Policy and Strategy Manager

John was a co-founder and original trustee of Merton Centre for Independent Living and has now joined the team as Policy & Strategy manager. His background is in developing Youth work and Education/Learning for Social Change. He has been an active member of the Disability Movement for over twenty years and has worked nationally and internationally on issues of Disability Equality, Inclusion and Independent Living and he is also a qualified facilitator. John is a professional artist and musician and performs nationally and internationally. John's Rights & Equalities focus and his creative practice compliment each other side by side to create accessible ways of exploring and bringing about change.


Richard Downes - Engagement and Development Worker 

Richard has been active in the Disability Movement as an Advocate and Activist for more than 20 years. Richard is proud to define as a disabled person. He is currently using his talents to lead our volunteer team and to direct and provide training.


Karly Francis - Caseworker (Health and Community Care)

Karly joined in May 2015 and specialises in health and community care. Karly has past experience in advocacy as well as having graduated from Hull University with a degree in Physics. Karly trains in disabled water skiing.


Charlet Wilson - Office Admin & Part Time Caseworker 

Charlet joined Merton CIL in May 2015 and has a degree in Law from Brunel University. 


Lizzie Wilson - Caseworker (Housing)

Lizzie joined Merton CIL in 2017, where she specialises in housing casework. Lizzie has an LPC and Masters of Law. 


Dawn Levy - Caseworker 

Dawn joined in late 2017. She has a degree in Law and background in advice. At Merton CIL, she specialises in Benefits. 


Nick De Bessou - Caseworker 

Nick joined Merton CIL in 2017. He is currently studying for a Law Degree and has a background in advice and advocacy. Nick specialises in benefits and appeals.

Tam Preboye - Caseworker


Anjou Armstrong - Hate Crime Advocate

Anjou joined Merton CIL in 2017 and has a background in statutory support services.  She handles all hate crime casework and outreach.