“I was really struggling to make ends meet… Someone has come at last to rescue me from my situation.”

Colleen is a single mum who lives in Hackney, East London. Her church held an event where she spoke to a volunteer about borrowing from a payday lender to buy her daughter a new pair of shoes. The interest rate was so high that she had been trapped, making repayments for over three years before friends were able to pay off the debt for her.

Colleen received budgeting advice and joined the local credit union, where she is now saving regularly for the first time in her life. She has become an inspiration for others – speaking out against exploitative lending and promoting better alternatives.

Colleen says, “I was really struggling to make ends meet and I really needed to get my daughter some proper shoes, so I went to a pay day lender. I felt that it was quite shameful and there weren’t any people that I could approach. I was pretty much on my own.

Someone has come at last to rescue me from my situation. Claudia met me for a coffee; I basically ended up telling her about my debt history, which I’d actually never felt comfortable to tell anyone before. For the first time I felt someone genuinely wanted to listen to my situation and it felt like a huge burden had been lifted from me.

I would really encourage people to think whether they could contribute a small amount.
With lots and lots of people contributing, that small amount of money could grow to
help many people in the community who are suffering like I was.”

Watch Colleen's Story Here