IF St Vincent de Paul’s diocesan executive officer Frank Moes tells us that Centrelink payments aren’t enough to cover his clients’ basic needs then maybe it’s time we took notice.
As all of us know, it is sometimes a struggle to cover the cost of our basic living expenses, particularly as the cold weather sets in and we crank up the heating and turn on the electric blanket in an effort to keep warm.
It’s not long before the electricity and gas bills start rolling in and our anxiety levels begin to rise as we stress about how we’ll pay those bills and what we will forgo in order to do so.
It doesn’t take much to imagine how hard it is to pay those bills if your only source of income is a meagre Centrelink payment.
Of course there are people who do manage to make ends meet using only their Centrelink payment, but it is hard.
Not everyone is good at budgeting their money, but when money is scare, budgeting and being able to determine what you need and what you only want, is a skill worth having.
Mr Moes said most of the charity’s clients are proud people who like to be able to pay their bills and support themselves and their family but as the price of utilities and food goes up it is becoming increasingly difficult.
The thought of elderly people who have been self-sufficient their entire lives being forced to turn to charity for food is heartbreaking.
Let’s all spare a thought for those people in our community who are facing a difficult winter and let’s all give generously of our time, money and most of all, compassion.