Peak week for CAP

DEBT counselling charity Christians Against Poverty (CAP) in Fenland is bracing itself for its busiest week of the year as the charity reveals the peak time to call for help is during the week beginning February 13.

The organisation says more people tackle their debts at this time of the year after lingering Christmas costs compound long-term multiple difficulties.

Sue Bradshaw has been helping local people with their finances since the Fenland centre opened over three years ago in partnership with Centenary Baptist Church, March.

“We see every client in their own home and get to know their situation well. Of all the people we have seen, there is a common thread: the people who have ignored the problems the longest face the most extreme difficulties.”

New research from the charity shows that more clients named “problems with budgeting” as their main reason for getting into debt, followed by “unemployment” and “relationship breakdown”.

Others said illness, bereavement and accident played their part in a downward financial spiral.

Sue said: “We hope that if you’re nervous of asking for help, you’ll know lots of other people are ringing us at the moment and that you’re not alone. However bad the problem looks, we can sort it out together.”

CAP helps everyone regardless of age, gender, faith or background. Statistics show that while 22 per cent of the UK population are considered to be living below the poverty line, for CAP clients across the UK this figure is approaching half.

More than half of single parents needing help and a third of couples with children were under the poverty line. While living costs have risen, the average client’s income in 2011 was just £11,207 – a fall from £11,484 since 2010.

For more about the free debt counselling on offer from CAP, see www.capdebthelp.org or call 0800 328 0006.