Experiences From The Ground: Sharing by a Program Support Staff
I have worked with Credit Counselling Singapore (CCS) for nearly 15 years in the Debt Servicing and Support department where I closely follow up with our debt-distressed clients and support them so that they can complete their Debt Management Program successfully.
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the livelihoods of many people, including our clients. Some have lost their jobs and some suffered a drop in income. As a result, they are unable to meet their monthly instalments.
Mdm J was one of them whom I was supporting. When I met Mdm J in late 2020, I learnt that she was only able to secure ad-hoc jobs. She was anxious and rather incoherent when she spoke to me. I did what I could to help her: I gathered the necessary documents, arranged an appointment to speak with a Credit Counsellor over the phone, prepared and submitted a revised repayment plan to creditors on her behalf.
The following year, Mdm J called in repeatedly to share her pain about the outstanding amount she owed creditors. While I advised her to discuss with the banks directly, I also made it a point to meet her in person to check if she was alright.
Mdm J looked very tired when we met. With a stack of past repayment receipts on her hand, she cried and poured out her heart to me. She shared that she has to take care of her 80-year-old mother and needed to clear her debts so that her mom and her can return to their normal lives.
I collated Mdm J’s repayment receipts and on her behalf, emailed her creditors to let her remain on the plan. During that period, I also continued to contact Mdm J, made time to listen and offer encouragement.
Recently, Mdm J called me to share some good news that she managed to pay off all her debts with her creditors. She was very grateful to CCS for our unwavering support.
I am very happy for Mdm J. Being able to help her has once again reaffirmed my belief that although the help I can offer is limited, I can at least offer a listening ear. As the Chinese saying goes 赠人玫瑰，手有余香 (literally translated: give a rose to others, the fragrance of it will remain on your hands).
Helping others to be financially resilience is in alignment with the social mission of CCS.
由于冠病疫情的影响，我们所协助的求助个案， 有些因为失去工作， 有些无法及时找到工作。没有了收入，所以无法继续跟进他们的偿还计划。J女士就是我负责的其中一个案例。
Contributed by Jonathan Peh, Credit Counselling Singapore.
Published 29 July 2022.