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SPONSORED: Financial lifeline for struggling families across Aberdeenshire

Little girl opening an empty fridge.
Are you finding it difficult to manage your family's finances?

Lockdown has been tough on all of us – but particularly for families, some of whom have found themselves in a financial crisis as a result.

Spending more time at home, perhaps because of a job loss, furlough, home schooling or working from home, has significantly increased outgoings for Scots families, in terms of energy bills and heating costs.

So, Scotland’s national charity for children and families, Children 1st, has stepped in to offer a lifeline to families who find themselves struggling to make ends meet. If you, or someone you know, is experiencing money worries, then you/they can get financial, practical and emotional support from Children 1st Parentline.

Ann Jarvis, from Children 1st Parentline, tells us more: “There’s been a huge increase in the number of people calling Children 1st Parentline since the pandemic began a year ago, with families reaching out for all sorts of support.

“During the coronavirus crisis it has been so hard for families because people are under such a lot of pressure, in every way, but financially, life has totally changed. What we are finding is that, during the winter especially, people weren’t at work or school so their heating was on all day and their food bills were huge because they were eating at home all the time – and that’s before you even think about the extra pressures of having less money coming in.

“We can support families with cash grants, advice and other support to help with money worries through this difficult time.”

Ann Jarvis from Children 1st Parentline

Many families have never been in a position where they are forced to ask for financial help before, until now. Ann explained that it “can be very hard for them to reach out”.

She added: “If at the moment you are struggling with urgent money worries, then please get in touch with Children 1st Parentline.

“We have had people phoning us because they have no food in the fridge; or can’t pay their heating bills; or an appliance has broken down – and they don’t know how they are going to make ends meet.

“We can help. You don’t need to fill in complicated forms or join the end of a long waiting list.

“When people contact us anxiety and stress levels in the house can be very high, often because they are under huge financial strain. The beauty of Children 1st Parentline is that we can support you with the emotional and practical issues your family faces as well as financially.

“Children 1st Parentline is here to support families with whatever they face, without judgment. We know how hard it is and every day we support families who feel like the pandemic has stretched them to breaking point. We’re here to help.”

If you live in Aberdeen or Aberdeenshire and are struggling to make ends meet during Covid-19, then contact Children 1st Parentline for financial, practical and emotional support. Call free on 08000 28 22 33 or click here to visit the website. Children 1st Parentline is open from 9am-9pm Monday to Friday and 9am-midday Saturday and Sunday.

This article originally appeared on the Evening Express website. For more information, read about our new combined website.