Belfast Telegraph

Help for taking account of debt worry

Christians Against Poverty, the national debt counselling charity, is opening a dedicated debt counselling centre in Bangor.

Bangor’s centre, launched in partnership with Christ Church, Primacy, is one of 26 others opening across the UK this week alone as the charity grows to address the UK’s urgent need.

Heading the CAP centre is Julie Rutledge, who will work with all members of the local community, regardless of religious belief, negotiating with creditors to work out a realistic budget for clients, which prioritises food and essential bills to ensure they will be debt free within five years.

Julie will also be supported by the charity’s financial expert in Bradford, who can offer clients a CAP account and insolvency services if needed.

Latest statistics show someone in the UK is declared insolvent or bankrupt every four minutes while a property is repossessed every 14 minutes — and the expected redundancies from public sector cutbacks are certain to put further pressure on families and individuals.

The CAP account acts as a simple bank account to help people pay their priority debts and the insolvency service provides a solution to those who, even with careful budgeting, would be facing a life sentence of debt repayments.

Christians Against Poverty’s UK CEO Matt Barlow said: “We are thrilled to open our latest centre in Bangor as the UK continues to battle against the increasing tide of personal debt.

“A recent client survey has showed that more than a third of people with spiralling personal debts seriously consider suicide – so it is no exaggeration to say Bangor will be getting a life-saving service.”

Julie said: ‘‘The worst thing someone in debt can do is stay silent, so I would urge anyone in financial difficulty in the area to contact me on 0800 328 0006. Being in debt is nothing to be ashamed of and I know we can work together to provide a lasting solution.”

For help with debt visit www.capuk.org or call 0800 328 0006.

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