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Funding for budgeting key for families

5 May 20145 May 2014

Funding for budgeting key for families

Today’s announcement of additional funding for budgeting services will mean New Zealand families have better access to budgeting advice, says the New Zealand Federation of Family Budgeting Services.

Minister of Social Development Paula Bennett announced this afternoon an injection of $22 million into budgeting in New Zealand, over the next four years. Minister Bennett described it as focusing on recognition and sustainability of budgeting services.

The New Zealand Federation of Family Budgeting Services is the professional body for budgeting in New Zealand, and CEO Raewyn Fox says this funding boost recognises the hard work of budget advisers around the country.

“Budgeting in New Zealand has historically been a volunteer role, and we still have more volunteers than paid budget advisers,” Fox explains. “But in recent times the budgeting industry has become a lot more professional, driven by the needs of clients. When a client comes to you needing to know all their options, you need to be part counsellor, part lawyer, part insolvency expert, and part coach. Our budget advisers are rigorously trained but we can always do more; this funding will help with that.”

Minister Bennett explained that a review of the funding of budgeting services had been happening for the past year or so, after the end of the Community Response Fund that helped budgeting services handle the influx of clients during the economic recession. Minister Bennett said the government “is committed to helping people to help themselves. It’s far better for people to learn and develop budgeting skills and avoid being caught in a constant cycle of bills and debts.”

Budgeting advice is offered free through the New Zealand Federation of Family Budgeting Services, with over 160 locations throughout the country. You can find your nearest budgeting service by visiting www.familybudgeting.org.nz or calling 0508 BUDGETLINE (283 438).

ENDS

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