The provision of financial education
The Centre is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority for the provision of regulated debt advice and has two advisers trained in debt counselling.
Being in debt has all sorts of adverse effects. Apart from the pressure of trying to pay the bills, it can lead to tensions within the family, stress and mental health problems. It is something people are often unwilling to admit to, but the longer the problem is left the worse it becomes.
We provide sympathy, a listening ear, and a structured approach to assessing income and outgoings, and then we advise on the range of possible solutions and undertake negotiations with creditors.
Experience has shown that people may not be aware of benefits they may be entitled to, may not have the technology which enables them to fill in forms online, or may just need help because the forms are so complicated. The Centre provides laptop and phone technology and reliable broadband and, if required, someone to sit alongside and help.
We believe the best way to tackle debt is to help people to avoid getting into it in the first place. We therefore plan to offer financial education with sessions on budgeting, saving and borrowing to give people confidence and the ability to manage their money sensibly.
We do all this on a voluntary basis and we do not charge those who seek help anything for our services. While we are based in the middle of the Heartsease Estate we are happy to help anyone in the Greater Norwich area.
We are affiliated to Community Money Advice, a national charity which exists to help those in debt. Community Money Advice provides us with an administration system, templates, training, support and oversight. We have received generous support from a range of charities, including the Diocesan Mission Fund.
We believe we are the only Anglican church in the Diocese which has a debt advice centre, and we would be very happy to talk to any other church which would like to explore the possibility of setting one up. We would also be very happy to hear from anyone who would like to volunteer at the Centre – full training is provided. The centre can be contacted on: 07765 739987 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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