A Local Guide to Debt, Spending and ‘Saving for a Rainy Day’

Reducing debt and 'saving for a rainy day'. Photo: TruPics

Financial advisors have teamed with a local welfare agency to produce a money guide designed to help better educate vulnerable locals.

The plain speaking and simply titled ‘Money Guide’ – explaining debt, spending and assets, is the brain child of RSM Financial Advisor Kirsten Genter, who developed the guide in partnership with Junction Support Services.

“Junction Support Services had a few team members talk to us at a local business meeting I attended,” Kirsten said.

“I just found the stories about what they do and how they help people really inspirational.

“These people do amazing work and it’s so different to what I typically do, where we deal with people at the opposite end of the financial spectrum – people who have had successful businesses or successful careers and have built an amount of wealth that they need to manage.

“Junction Support Services are dealing with people who are struggling and need a bit of a helping hand, so I thought I’d use my experience in the world of finance to help them to help their clients.”

Michelle Fell, Client Services Manager with Junction Support Services says the money guide is written in an easy to understand language which will be a practical tool for clients.

Kirsten Genter and Michelle Fell.

“A  lot of our work is around people who are experiencing homelessness or are at risk of homelessness, experiencing or fleeing family violence,” Michelle said.

“Among the counselling services we offer is the financial component for young people or families who haven’t learnt how to work with their money.

“Our staff are welfare trained, not financial trained, so while we try and work with clients about budgeting, it’s great to have this expert knowledge presented in a way that’s easy to understand for everyone.”

The book uses real case studies as examples on how money could have been better managed.

“Junction Support Services shared a few stories around a few financial bungles their clients have found themselves in, such as using a small pay day loan to pay a gas bill.

“One simple tip could be as simple as knowing you can call the gas company and ask to pay half the bill this fortnight and the rest the next fortnight. Rather than taking out a pay day loan, an arrangement with the gas company could make a real difference.”

It’s hoped the book can be printed in bulk and delivered not only to Junction Support Services, but also to a range of complementary agencies such as Upper Murray Family Care, Headspace and even local schools, as well as RSM’s offices in David Street Albury.

“We really want to thank RSM,” Michelle said.

“We would not have been able to achieve something like this without their expertise and resources to print the books.

“It’s great to be able to give our clients such a guide that’s tangible, and really help set them up moving forward.”

For more on Junction Support Services: https://junction.org.au/

For more on RSM: https://www.rsm.global/australia/offices/albury