Helping people get back on track
Foxton’s free budgeting service now a lifeline for many families
Foxton Budgeting has been going from strength to strength since it started in 2005.
This year the free service to residents of Foxton, Foxton Beach, Waitarere Beach, Himatangi and Shannon has become truly stand alone.
Midyear the service moved into Kearne Cottage, behind the Salvation Army building in Avenue Rd, and has joined FinCap, an umbrella organisation for the nation’s 199 budgeting services.
Together FinCap member organisations employ over 1000 advisers/ mentors, provide help to more than 60,000 people each year around the country and manage a total personal debt of $600m.
The Foxton service now has access to community grants as well as a regular contribution from MSD and has two trained mentors, Bruce Rockell and Stephanie Brown.
FinCap or financial capability, is a charitable trust set up and funded by MSD a year ago. It replaces the former Family Budgeting Services, which has since been wound up. Each member organisation is an affiliate on whose behalf FinCap works with MSD.
“They also deal with easy money lenders, for example, such as Home Direct and Harmoney,” said Stephanie Brown.
Foxton Budgeting has around 70 clients.
“Some of them come in every week.” In recent years the team has seen a new trend — more working people are needing help due to life events, such as an ongoing illness which has led to loss of income, however temporarily.
“We bring people back to reality: All you need to survive is is shelter, food and power. We try to change their spending habits. We can’t force them,” said Bruce.
For them it is about confidence building.
“We become a sounding board outside their family circle and eventually we are part of their families.”
They offer a free non-judgmental
“People walk in here in tears but eventually go home happy and proud of themselves because they have been empowered to deal with their financial problems,” said Stephanie. “Seeing people’s debt shrink is also very satisfying.”
Find Foxton Budgeting at Kearne Cottage, 10 Avenue Road in Foxton. Ph 06 363 6684 or 027 623 8077.
Budgeting services perform an important role.