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Don’t panic! Help is available

Posted on 1st December, 2014 by Lincoln Against Poverty

People struggling financially in the run-up to Christmas are being urged not to panic by turning to high interest lenders.

Lincoln Against Poverty, a partnership between City of Lincoln Council and several city organisations, is signposting anyone needing debt advice to Christians Against Poverty in the third phase of its ‘Say no to high cost borrowing’ campaign taking place in the lead-up to the festive season.

Christians Against Poverty offers help to people struggling with debt, as well as running job clubs and giving assistance to those who need support with their budgeting.

The organisation has visited more than 500 people in the city since launching in 2006.

Simon Hoare, Manager for Christians Against Poverty (CAP) in Lincoln, said: “For many of us, it’s not just Christmas cards we can expect through the door but payment demands and credit card statements too.

“Talking about money doesn’t come easily but that doesn’t mean anyone should have to carry the burden of debt alone, especially at this time of year.

“CAP exists to support people to feel back in control of their finances and to succeed in becoming debt free. A free, confidential home visit is only one phone call away – 0800 328 0006.”

The city council also has a range of benefits advice it can give to those who are worried about their money.

Martin Walmsley, Head of the Shared Revenues and Benefits Service, said: “Many people do not realise that they are entitled to benefits.

“Also, people sometimes think because they are working they will not be entitled – but many customers are entitled to benefits as well as their wage.

“In fact, many benefits are paid no matter how much you have coming in (not ‘means-tested’). Also, means-tested benefits increase their rates regularly, and people who didn’t qualify for benefits such as Council Tax Benefit in the past, may now qualify. For further information contact us by e-mail welfare@lincoln.gov.uk or by telephone on 01522 873382.”

The ‘Say no to high cost borrowing’ campaign got under way in October and runs until January 2015 with the aim of showing where people can access affordable credit or debt advice if they are worried about their finances.

A range of services offering help to people who are living in poverty can be found on the Lincoln Against Poverty website, www.lincolnagainstpoverty.co.uk/help