Keep the wolves from the door this Christmas

With Christmas just around the corner, this exciting and wonderful time for some families can be a time of stress and financial strain for others. Chapter 23 Kerry Credit Unions has teamed up with independent financial advisory organisation MABS (Money Advice and Budgeting Service) to produce ‘Keep the Wolves from the Door’ a Christmas Survival Guide.
Chapter 23 Credit Unions Marketing Committee Chairperson & Killarney Credit Union staff, Helen Courtney Power said, “Our keep the wolves from the door Christmas survival guide offers top tips for Christmas shopping from setting price limits on presents or Kris Kringle, to setting a realistic Christmas budget. It highlights the different source of credit available from moneylenders, personal loans, credit card debt and high interest store credit. In particular the guide shows the very high rates of interest being charged by Moneylenders (Doorstep Credit). The guide shows exactly what savings can be made with a credit union loan versus a loan from a moneylender where you can pay up to €120/€140 less on a €500 loan with your credit union”.
Helen added, “As most credit unions accept social welfare, access to credit union loans is open to everyone so there is no reason for anyone to be paying moneylenders high interest rates. Killarney Credit Union offers the “It makes sense loan” micro loan scheme to combat moneylenders in South Kerry and offering credit union loans as an alternative source of credit with loan repayments coming from Social Welfare either directly or through the An Post Household Budget Scheme
Speaking to Jerry Doyle Kerry MABS Co-Ordinator, “MABS is delighted to be working with credit unions in Kerry on this Keep the Wolves from the Door initiative. MABS is a government funded service but operate independently of government departments, the HSE, credit unions, banks, etc. This is a very important as we offer a free, independent and confidential service to those who approach us seeking financial and budgeting advice. It’s been a busy year for MABS, in Kerry this year we have seen an increase in supports for those who are over-indebted and struggling to meet repayments as they fall due. As an example for those in arrears with their home loan repayments and facing possible loss of the family home we now have a free, confidential and independent MABS Dedicated Mortgage Arrears Service. There are a number of other supports available through MABS to assist those who are in debt, which they cannot afford to meet repayments on, so the message is to contact MABS if you cannot resolve the financial problem directly with your lender,” he concluded.
Copies of the guide are available at Killarney Credit Union branches, MABS, local shops and businesses and will be distributed to local households in the coming weeks.