Castlemilk Budgeting Services (*)

Castlemilk Budgeting Services

Castlemilk Budgeting Service is an independent registered charity that was established in 1999 to assist people to overcome debt problems and improve their quality of life. The Service can, and will, assist anyone with any level of debt, however, the ultimate aim is to prevent legal actions (Warrant sales and Poindings) and evictions and, where appropriate, ease the transition for people re-entering the job market.

The organisation, a collaboration project between the Castlemilk Law and Money Advice Centre and the Castlemilk Credit Union, received lottery funding after an initial pilot phase funded by the Castlemilk Partnership ‘Key Fund’. The pilot project established the level of demand and banking procedures, along with the Bank of Scotland, to deal with the likely number of people looking for assistance to overcome the burden of debt. Initial indications were that the Budgeting Service could assist up to 30 people per year.

Since then the organisation has grown by establishing good working relationships with a range of local housing associations, the local City Housing department and CEDA and now has a number of outreach points providing confidential advice, support and access to money management services. It is hoped that this outreach work can be extended over the next period to cover other Community projects, Childcare service users and possibly the Health Centre.

As a result of the work to date the Budgeting Service has assisted up to 50 people with money management services. Liz McElwee, the Project Manager stated "We have helped a lot of people to overcome some of their debt problems in the last 18 months. I would urge anyone facing these problems, no matter what level of debt they face, to contact us sooner rather than later. Very often the problem is not as bad as it seems and all our services are free and provided in the strictest of confidence"

The organisation currently focuses its efforts in Castlemilk and to date the Budgeting Service has assisted its clients to repay around £45,000 to a combination of creditors including the City Council, local housing associations and mortgage lenders. This success rate has stimulated considerable interest among a range of organisations outwith Castlemilk areas wishing to replicate the service.

The project workers and Management Committee expect the Budgeting Service to continue its growth and anticipate an increasing workload resulting from the move to its new custom built headquarters, along with the Credit Union, currently being built at the site of the old Glenwood School. These premises will be complete by the end of August, in the meantime the organisation is looking at ways of extending the services available and providing support to the wider Glasgow area.

For further information, contact:
Liz McElwee
Castlemilk Budgeting Services
C/o Castlemilk Credit Union
32 Dougrie Place
G45 9AD
Tel: 0141 – 634 – 3802