Debt Counselling Centre Celebrates its First Year In Leeds
A church-based charity is celebrating its first year of rescuing local people from personal debt – a free service that is literally saving lives.
Last year, as the economic downturn continued to effect the community, members of Bridge Street Pentecostal Church, Leeds decided they wanted to do more to help people and partnered with UK debt counselling charity Christians Against Poverty (CAP) to open a local branch, as did Wharfedale Vineyard Church.
During the last 12 months, the team have helped scores of despairing local families and individuals by offering a free, face-to-face and caring service which gives both hope and a solution.
One of those was single dad John who found himself struggling after being made redundant and having to cope with mounting debt.
“I wasn't eating properly, I wasn't sleeping and I wasn't thinking straight with the constant phone calls and letters arriving really didn't think anyone could help but when CAP got involved they took all the pressure away”
Centre manager Malcolm Lamb said: “It's been a very eye-opening year. People's problems most commonly begin with at least one unexpected change in circumstances, like the loss of a job or a death in the family. If someone is on a low income to start with, it can take very little to put someone into the red.
“We've also seen that debt problems don't just affect the bank balance. Constant demands coupled with feelings of failure mean that more than a third of those who call us say they are considering suicide as a way out. The good news – and the church has always been about good news – is that no matter how bad people think their debts are, we can help.”
CAP is UK-wide charity growing fast to keep up with an increasing need. UK statistics show that
- More than 1,800 people were made redundant every day between November 2011 and January 2012
- Someone loses their home through repossession on average every 15 minutes
- 318 people are declared bankrupt or insolvent every day.
To find out more about CAP visit www.capdebthelp.org or call 0800 328 0006
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