Christians Against Poverty (CAP)

CAP is a 20 year old voluntary organisation to support those who seem to be in impossible financial difficulties. Its work is not to pay off whatever is the debt but, in both a professional and befriending way, to support the client to manage the situation.

There are two sides to its work. On the one hand professional advice is obtained with CAP negotiating with the banks, etc on behalf of the client. This financially professional body is based in Bradford. Individuals seeking the assistance of CAP give it authority to negotiate with creditors and organise the client's finances so as to make them debt free within 5 years or negotiate a managed insolvency.

On the other hand in the local regions, for instance in Penrith, there will be people who act as befrienders, that is who "walk with the client" to encourage and support him or her to carry out the plan of action which has been professionally negotiated by Bradford. Then there are others, those "bringing blessings" who give general & practical support to the client and the befriender, for instance preparing a Christmas hamper, or sending birthday greetings.

The emphasis is to reassure the clients they are not alone, and to encourage them to follow the financial plan negotiated by CAP to manage their finances.

CAP is a Christian initiative. Although CAP in Penrith is only a year old nevertheless there have been two successes with two clients completing the process of clearing their debts.

Would you like to know more? Do have a word with John Poland or me. I do think this is one of the surest ways of working together ecumenically with other Christian bodies which our Church encourages us to do. Fr Jerome.