Individuals struggling with debt are already beginning to access a new free Lynn service that offers practical support.
The CAP Debt Centre began operating in Lynn in April and is holding an official launch on Thursday (June 16) .
Emily Hart, debt centre manager, said: “It’s so rewarding to see the results and change. You go from seeing someone so downcast and can see a feeling of hope emerge.”
The debt centre has been brought to Lynn thanks to a partnership investment by Lynn Baptist Church, the Church in the Woottons and Lynn Evangelical Church.
It is part of the Christians Against Poverty (CAP) debt centre network.
Clients receive free help in their own home. After an initial appointment with Emily, CAP’s professional team create a personal budget for each client. CAP will negotiate directly with creditors and, in most cases, organise for the client to make just one monthly payment to reduce their debt.
Emily sees the client a total of three times to get them on track with the plan and volunteer befrienders are available to continue the support.
Four people have already taken up the service.
Emily said: “Befrienders are there to offer emotional support to clients and literally be a friend. They are someone to speak to and will go along with them, if they wish, to do things like open a new bank account .
“A lot of the time people in debt don’t want to talk about their situation to people they know and can become isolated.”
Neil Hubbard, 55, a member of King’s Lynn Evangelical Church, in Gaywood, was one of those keen to see the service launched and is volunteering as a befriender.
He said: “I feel it’s a service that makes a clear difference in people’s lives. When they get in contact they are in a position where they are worrying about everything that comes through the door and how they are going to make that month’s payments.
“As soon as CAP can take on those negotiations with creditors it releases individuals completely of that burden and allows them to get out of debt and get control of their finances.
“It really makes an incredible impact on people’s lives.”
Individuals can contact the service via 0800 328 0006.
Organisations wishing to attend the launch, should email: firstname.lastname@example.org