FAMILY CONNECT, Napier Courier Column
This week’s column, from Debbie Mackintosh, Manager of Budgeting Services, Napier Family Centre.( As seen in our fortnightly column, in the Napier Courier)
When you see the busy traffic back on our roads, children walking and cycling signalling the start of school, you know the Holidays are definitely over!
Our last column, discussed the transition of our young Children to School, and the costs that can come with that. Add to this, the ever increasing cost of living, and for many households, it can become a time of stress and worry, that puts a lot of pressure onto the family.
When your money just doesn’t go around or you are caught in a web of debt and increasing bills, it can be a relief to know that there’s someone who will help you.
These days, this is not something to fear, but to see it as a way to take that worry about money, and turn it into a positive, for your family’s wellbeing. By being better informed, you can make a positive change, and be on your way, to removing those uncertainties that often come with debt.
Here at Napier Family Centre, we have a great team that assist with budget advice and planning. People in all sorts of situations and from all walks of life can find household budgeting and money management difficult. We offer free, confidential and non-judgmental advice. We also know that circumstances are sometimes unexpected, and our services are open and available to all who may need them.
What we can do for individuals and families:
Setting a budget is the baseline service provided for every client. In the first appointment with a client we will determine all income, expenses, debts and other outgoings to reveal the current financial situation. Here we will check our clients are receiving the correct entitlements (e.g. WINZ/IRD), often we’ll make good progress in the first meeting.
Our budget advisors are also able to negotiate with creditors on our client’s behalf. This means we are often able to bring payments down to fit into a realistic budget thus avoiding penalties and further debt.
Applying for WINZ and IRD entitlements can be complex and confusing. We can talk directly with WINZ and IRD on our client’s behalf.
We can also support our clients by advocating for them with other parties. This may mean sourcing emergency housing, food parcels or clothing for instance. Or it might mean talking with Kiwi saver (for hardship withdrawals), banks, power companies and many more.
Napier Family Centre has a range of services that are often utilised by an individual client or family. We also have good relationships with other support agencies such as Gambling Hawkes Bay, Foodbank, Quit smoking etc. and can refer our clients to one or more of these.
We are sometimes able to make referrals to Foodbank if a client has no entitlement for a food grant/assistance at WINZ. Food parcels from Foodbank can be picked up at our offices.
We have a Budget Advisor at EIT who offers students advice both, one to one and via classroom talks regarding Study link, consumer tips, financial literacy, tax refunds. We also have an advisor at WINZ in Taradale (two days per week)
Appointments for both these services are advisable.
How do I get to see a budget advisor?
Appointments are essential, and are available Monday to Thursday, 8:30am-4:00pm. To book an appointment please contact us, below or via our website enquiry form.
Napier Family Centre
Corner Wycliffe and Morris Spence Street
Onekawa, Napier. P: 06 8437280