Single mum relives tough battle with crippling debt

CAP Debt Centre Manager, Jayne Cheshire taking a clients history
CAP Debt Centre Manager, Jayne Cheshire taking a clients history
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A single mum left with crippling debts by a violent ex-partner has spoken of how she struggled to feed her daughter.

The 30-year-old – who wishes to be known only as Rosie – owed around £11,000 after she relocated to Sheffield following the break-up of her relationship.

She has spoken of how she battled to survive, with bailiffs at her door and unpaid bills mounting, before seeking advice in a bid to help others in the same situation.

Rosie said: “At that time my daughter was six and I didn’t know how we were going to live.

“Even to get her to school was quite expensive, we struggled to have food on the table.

“It got to the point where I couldn’t think about anything else – it sounds terrible but for a while I thought would my daughter living with my mum be the best thing for her.”

Rosie was speaking at the launch of two new debt centres in Sheffield, run by Christians Against Poverty, this week.

She turned to the charity two years ago and was referred to its first centre at St Thomas Philadelphia Church in Hillsborough.

She has been given a payment plan, regular face-to-face support and advice on budgeting.

Advisers also wrote to creditors to ensure bailiffs would stay away and she has reduced her debt.

Rosie, who is now expecting her second child and hoping to become a social worker after she graduated from university, said: “When I first spoke to CAP I ended up breaking down on the phone.

“I’m quite excited now, I have a new bank account and am not in my overdraft and I have money in the account - I’m teaching my daughter to budget.

“I feel like I’m in control, it is not controlling me.

“I would urge people in the same situation to seek help - don’t leave it because it will destroy you.”

The two new centres are now operating from churches in Arbourthorne and Swallownest, Rotherham.

Advisers will visit people’s homes and work together with them on a long term plan.

Recent figures showed there had been a surge in people in Sheffield seeking help for debt problems - with many turning up to food banks hungry.

n Call Christians Against Poverty on 0800 328 0006 or visit www.capuk.org to seek advice.