Fund free debt advice to help people survive cost of living crisis, says charity

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Christians Against Poverty (CAP) is calling for an increase in funding for free debt advice to stop more households falling into crippling debt after two years of high living costs.

In a new report, CAP said that low income was the main contributor to debt, with three in five of its clients (60%) needing to borrow money to pay household bills. 

Around the same proportion of new clients in debt were earning below the poverty line and had borrowed money to pay for food, clothing and other basic living expenses.

One in seven said they had skipped meals on a daily basis, and two in 10 said they were going without heating in cold weather. 

CAP CEO Stewart McCulloch said that two years of high living costs had left many low income households across the UK "trapped under the rubble of debt and poverty".

He is predicting an increase in demand for free debt advice as more people need help to get back on their feet.

"Many charities and hundreds of local churches, supported by thousands of kind individuals, are going above and beyond to clear the wreckage of debt and poverty," he said. 

"Free debt advice is a vital service that millions of people need right now. At Christians Against Poverty, we helped 18% more people go debt free in 2023.

"We are aiming to scale up and double the amount of clients we help each month but we can only achieve that with more donations and funding.

"We need you to join us in this fight against UK poverty so that millions can look forward to a full and fulfilled life, rather than just scraping by."