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War Cry comments on money management

According to the Financial Conduct Authority, financial distress is rising

ANYONE with the slightest trace of Irish blood in their veins will know that today (Saturday 17 March) is St Patrick’s Day. For some it will be just another day, but for others it will prompt a 24-hour party. In Dublin, the celebrations have been spread over a five-day period with the St Patrick’s Festival concluding on Monday.

Amid the festivities, The Salvation Army is continuing to work in the city, seeking to help those who are most in need. In this week’s issue of The War Cry we report on the assistance that the Army provides to families in Dublin through the Clonard Road Family Hub.

The hub provides accommodation for 25 families who are waiting to be housed by the city council. As well as providing temporary housing, staff also support the families by teaching parents life skills. These include managing finances, as many of the clients staying at the hub admit to having struggled to keep up with rent increases or to pay their bills.

This is exactly the type of support and education that is needed – and in the UK, the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Just Finance Foundation is campaigning for it to happen earlier. Much earlier.

In a submission to the Department for Education, the foundation has called for financial education to be made compulsory in primary schools. It claims that this will help the children to better navigate their way through the financial pitfalls and uncertainties that adulthood can bring.

According to the Financial Conduct Authority, financial distress is rising, with half of UK consumers showing signs of financial vulnerability. Providing opportunities for people – however old they are – to learn how to manage their money is vital.

But what’s also important is recognising our own responsibility to take the opportunities we are given to learn how to look after our own financial resources. Such opportunities are worth their weight in gold.

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