Free counselling at forum

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Baldivis MLA Reece Whitby and Baldivis resident Renae Fussell say the forum is a way for struggling households to obtain advice and assistance for financial matters.
Camera IconBaldivis MLA Reece Whitby and Baldivis resident Renae Fussell say the forum is a way for struggling households to obtain advice and assistance for financial matters. Credit: Pierra Willix

A free financial counselling and advice forum organised to assist those struggling financially will run in Baldivis next week, with speakers from several organisations also set to be available for one-on-one chats with residents.

Organised by Baldivis MLA Reece Whitby, the forum will include talks from representatives from Anglicare Rockingham, the Salvation Army, Legal Aid and Financial Counselling Red Cross.

Mr Whitby said many young people and families in the area were struggling, with the suburb hit particularly hard by the downturn in the mining industry.

“Many families are struggling, but in the Baldivis area in particular, so many are exposed to the mining industry and have been hit by the downturn in FIFO,” he said.

“Although not all families here are FIFO, the impact of the downturn goes across all industries, with many people now spending less money.”

Mr Whitby said the forum was a way to offer free advice to residents who might be too embarrassed to ask for assistance, or who were unsure where to turn for help when bills began piling up.

“A lot of people are reluctant to go out and ask for help, but this will help people deal with any issues they may have sooner rather than later,” he said.

“A lot of people have never had to reach out for help or welfare and hit rock bottom and suffer when they don’t have to.”

Baldivis resident Renae Fussell said she had found paying her families bills in instalments had been a good way to stay on top of finances, and encouraged other residents to attend the forum to try to find some ideas that may assist them.

The forum will be held next Wednesday, March 27, at the Mary Davies Library in Baldivis from 6pm to 7.30pm. To RSVP, contact 9523 2921 or email baldivis@mp. wa.gov.au.

Outreach facilities of Legal Aid WA’s Statewide Mortgage Hardship Service will also be available at Mary Davies Library and Community Centre, Baldivis.

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