A charity in Bolton say many people on low incomes in the area do not have enough money to stay out of debt and afford the essentials they need to live.

Christian Against Poverty’s Bolton North team, based at St Peter’s Halliwell Church (CAP) published a new report Pushed under, pushed out’, which looks at the growing number of households across the UK who are being pulled into debt.

CAP’s Bolton North’s Debt Centre Manager, Sam Wolstencroft said: "This new report shows what we are already seeing on the ground at Christians Against Poverty and St Peter’s Halliwell Church here in Bolton, that many households we visit just don't have enough income to cover their essential costs right now.

“At CAP and St Peter’s Halliwell Church we find the main reason for debt is living on a low income alongside other aspects that impact people’s finances.

"It could be that they have been made redundant, are going through a relationship breakdown, suffered an injury or long term illness or a loved one has passed away, resulting in less household income.

"These types of often unexpected or unplanned situations can cause both emotional and financial pain.”

The ‘Pushed under, pushed out’ report has looked at 10 years worth of data and shows four out of five people with income below the minimum level were in arrears due to household bills.

The report also found those in low income jobs were often most affected and that employment doesn’t necessarily protect against the impact of low incomes and debt.

CAP are encouraging local businesses, organisations and community groups across Bolton to put up their ‘Improve your finances’ poster to raise awareness of the free online and local help available to those struggling financially.

Sam said: "The stigma around debt and poverty means many people feel ashamed and as a result don’t come forward for help.

"All of us living here in Bolton can play our part in changing that by working together to support and encourage our friends, family and people in our community who are struggling financially.

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"We can show them love and understanding and point them towards free, friendly and professional help.

“Together, we can fight against poverty in Bolton.”

CAP run a free debt advice and free money coaching class as part of the support they offer as well as more advice online.

Contact CAP’s Bolton North Debt Centre Manager, Sam Wolstencroft on samwolstencroft@capuk.org if you’d like to find out more.