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Local Finance Initiatives

TCT Tyne to Tweed is committed to supporting the increase of fair and affordable finance

Our Just Finance Development Worker, Liz Chadwick, provides practical support for Credit Unions and other community money advice services with a Christian influence and mission. In collaboration with churches, schools, the voluntary sector, Northumberland County Council, affordable finance lenders and Northumberland Community Bank, TCT Tyne to Tweed helps people in local communities access affordable finance. An online portal was established as a "one-stop-shop" for residents in Northumberland to help them understand and manage their money, see: www.northumberlandmoney.com

We developed an active partnership with a focus group of 10 parent volunteers from Josephine Butler School in Ashington. They had all taken part in the parental engagement element of the "Pennies to Pounds" sessions run by the school under the LifeSavers banner. LifeSavers is an early years finance, saving and education project designed by the Just Finance Foundation which has been particularly successful in the Northumberland Church of England Academy Trust. For more information about LifeSavers see: www.lifesavers.co.uk This group of parents became an Advisory Group for developing the Northumberland Money online portal mentioned above.

To help alleviate the financial distress of people with money problems, we set up a Community Money Advice Centre in Seaton Hirst to support the work of Wansbeck Valley Food Bank. Seaton Hirst CMA Centre has been licenced by the Financial Conduct Authority and local church members have been trained to become qualified Debt Advisors. To find out more about Community Money Advice, or to search for a Centre near you, see: www.communitymoneyadvice.com

We are currently supporting the work of Northumberland Community Bank and other Credit Unions. Our Volunteer Co-ordinator, Carmen Ward, is helping Northumberland Community Bank to establish an information point in Prudhoe. If you'd be interesting in serving as a volunteer in this initiative, you can contact Carmen on: carmen.ward@tct-tynetotweed.org

During the Coronavirus pandemic, we helped to deliver Just Finance Foundation's Covid-Cash Recovery course, a free 2-hour "Train-the-Trainer" course, delivered over Zoom, which upskills churches, charities and community workers to help individuals recover from financial problems arising from the pandemic. The course covers everything from general entitlements, rights, government and charitable support, to budgeting, help with bills, loans, debt, and money strategies for making it through these next few months. Although we're no longer involved in delivery, courses are still available via the Just Finance Foundation website:

To learn more about these, and other local finance initiatives contact Liz Chadwick: liz.chadwick@tct-tynetotweed.org