Becky is a single mum with two children. She works part time, is suffering from anxiety and following a relationship breakdown was struggling to pay her debts and put food on the table. Last Christmas she came to the Resource Centre for help with food.
“I had over £6000 worth of debt and I was just struggling to pay these back monthly. I could pay one month, but not be able to pay the next. I would miss out on food and then I’d have to miss out on paying my debts and bills. I was depressed, I was really worried each month about what would happen. I was scared that bailiffs would come knocking on the door, I was having letters come through I was really struggling. I had to come to the foodbank to get some food.
It took me a long time to before I could go into REACH but as soon as I walked in there I felt relieved. I went in and spoke to a lovely man, they put my name down on a waiting list for my debts, but they gave me a box of food and a Christmas hamper.
I took the hamper home and the kids eyes lit up. We all decided we’d open it. We couldn’t believe how much was inside it - milk, biscuits, stuffing, chocolate baubles, Pringles and a turkey joint. I remember my son shouting; “yah, turkey! You can’t have Christmas without a turkey!” and I didn’t know how we were going to get one. I just didn’t have the money. This really perked the kids up.
I was dreading Christmas, the whole thing. Not only with food but with presents too, so the hamper really helped make it a bit special. It was nice not having to think about the debts and just have one day for a change.”
After Christmas, Becky started to receive help for her debts from Jo – a REACH Community Outreach Advisor.
“Jo came round to the house. She also had another lady with her. I was so nervous about her coming but they were really lovely and made me feel relaxed. We sat down and I spoke to them about how much money I had coming in and how much money I had going out. Jo worked out a budget for me and the best way to go about helping me. I’m now much more in control and I feel more confident. I’m budgeting and now I don’t owe any more money. I am debt free, I am so relieved. I don’t wake up every day worrying that I was going to get people knocking on my door.
This year is going to be different, the house is a happier place, me and the kids are all looking forward to Christmas. It means that this Christmas is going to be a lot better because I will have a bit of extra money to be able to go out and buy food and snacks. But it’s not all about presents, but about being together as a family, making memories and the birth of Jesus.
I would just like to say a massive thank you to Jo. Without Jo, I would still be in debt and still in a bad place. I still suffer a bit with anxiety but I feel a whole lot better. Thank you to anyone who gave some food for our hamper, it was really lovely and put a smile on our faces at a difficult time for us.”
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