Help is at hand for local people who now find themselves struggling as they count the cost of the lengthy school holidays.
Debt Action NI is urging people to seek advice as many try to cope with the additional costs of summer holidays.
Debt Action NI, the money and debt service, which has a Ballymena office at Gingerbread on Greenvale Street, and at Antrim Enterprise Centre on the town’s Greystone Road, says that with Northern Ireland having longer summer holidays than England and Wales, families here are hit harder.
A local DEBT Action NI spokesperson says that this can be a very difficult time for many,
“Those most vulnerable or low income families find the summer holidays a stressful time and can lead to those getting into debt to manage children’s expectations and the sheer cost of having extra mouths to feed for two months. Meanwhile as children go back to school, the added cost of school uniforms lead to further financial strain.
“If you are struggling with debt you don’t have to face it alone,” the spokesperson said.
You can contact Debt Action NI by calling the Freephone helpline on 0800 917 4607 to speak directly to an adviser between 8am and 9pm Monday-Friday and 9am-3pm on a Saturday or you can text the word “Action” to 81025 and an adviser will call you back.
You also can browse the dedicated website, www.debtaction-ni.net, where you can chat to a virtual adviser or use an online budgeting tool. You can also find a list of local contact details on the website.