Margaret’s story is ongoing, and she continues to grow in confidence with each visit and achievement; the quiet, anxious, serious lady that arrived at Families Together just before Christmas 2015 is increasingly active in all aspects of the project, and it has been an honour to work alongside such a strong and capable lady. Margaret was referred to the project by her tenancy support worker. A newly single Mum with dependent young people still living at home, she was struggling to make her limited income from two jobs stretch to pay priority bills and was facing eviction.

“I used to have a two incomes and sickness disability benefit for my son.  We had good money but my ex got credit cards and is spiralled from there. We argued a lot and then we split up and I had one income, my boy was too old for child benefit, and didn’t get health benefits.  Even though my ex had the credit cards I still have to pay some of them”

On arrival, she needed crisis support and was referred to Shelter Cymru by project staff, who also attended the initial appointment with her for support. Margaret also accessed our financial capability sessions to identify savings in her weekly expenditure to cover bills and living costs, work that was a crucial support as an external specialist agency was helping her dealing with her debts and creditors.

During the early parts of her engagement Margaret disclosed some deep rooted issues that required a secondary specialist referral into Women’s Aid.  Since then, Margaret has regularly attended session at the CBSA, smiles on arrival, and confidently engages with everyone she meets in and around the building. Margaret is exploring employment opportunities closer to home to reduce her travel time and costs. She has attended CV workshops, supported job search and had assistance in completing job applications. 

One of Margaret’s personal achievements has been to begin an accredited qualification, as she struggled with some learning difficulties and found writing difficult. However, as usual, she has approached her learning with positive determination, and will achieve her qualification.

Margaret has started getting involved in upcycling & reuse activities and is supporting project staff in the creation of user friendly, beginner’s guides. Margaret is literally growing from week to week and is setting an excellent example to her sons, as well as now using basic money management tools to ensure she makes payments on time.