“I can also pay that bill next month. Do I work hard for my money? Then I can enjoy it too.”
“My name is Kim (48 years old). I was the youngest in the family. I’ve always found it difficult to handle money. That was already the case when I still lived at home. My parents and sister took on many of my financial responsibilities, including when I moved out on my own. My attitude was that I worked hard for my money, and that I had the right to spend it on the things I liked. That’s why I left bills. It kept getting worse. So much so that I ended up in the Wsnp (Debt Rescheduling Natural Persons Act) through debt assistance from the municipality.”
“I went through the Wsnp period easily. Also in that period, thanks to the help of my parents and sister, I had enough money to make ends meet. After 3 years I was debt free. I had a clean slate with no debts, but I hadn’t changed myself. I continued exactly the same way. I eventually ended up in debt again.
The tipping point came a while ago. After a threatening eviction from the bailiff, I finally came to the realization that I had made a big mess of it. I was an emotional wreck, the financial worries of all those years had taken their toll. I had to do things differently because in this way my son would also be the victim of my irresponsible behavior.”
Learning new behavior is essential to make debt counseling more effective and efficient. If you don't do this, clients often fall back into their old patterns.
A long way
“Motivated and in good spirits, I contacted debt counseling through the municipality again. Unfortunately, that turned out to be a big disappointment. The contact between me and the debt counselor went badly from day one. Everything went wrong and in the end it was not possible to reach an agreement with all creditors. Through a complaints procedure I ended up with the ombudsman. He concluded that errors had indeed been made. There was nothing left to do but submit another application to the debt assistance agencies via the municipality. That process is now underway. Although I feel it is going much too slowly, I use every day to further invest in myself. I need to learn how to handle money and my administration. That’s why I signed up with Stichting Budgetcafé. “
Solving debt is not enough for people like Kim. They also need help to learn different behaviors. The Stichting Budgetcafé does this by offering personal and intensive guidance.
Stichting Budgetcafé’s advice was to stabilize the file again and prepare it for a new application for a debt counseling process via the municipality. This in combination with intensive guidance. Intensive guidance aimed at preventing new debts and learning skills so that you can ultimately do your financial administration independently without falling back into debt.
“Our guidance is tailor-made. The process is tailored to the individual and can run parallel to the municipal debt counseling process. In these types of processes, it is extremely important that you involve clients in application procedures and prepare for the possible scenarios. Kim is extremely motivated, she really wants to change and you have to use that.”
The beginning is here
“I am so happy that I took the plunge and signed up for the Budgetcafé. Partly because of them, I dared to register again with the municipality. Through the intensive guidance I learn to make my own budget and how to handle my money. I don’t have to do this journey alone this time, it feels like we’re doing it together and that gives a very nice feeling. I have come a long way, the road is still very long, but the beginning is there.”