In response to the unfolding crisis around personal finances, from 22 March, Debt Free South West are expanding the way people can access their debt advice service to make it easier to get support during and after the pandemic.
A growing number of people in the South West facing problem debt and financial insecurity due to the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic now have more ways to access support from Debt Free South West. In partnership with Ciptex who use Twilio technology, Debt Free South West can provide clients with access to advice through a channel of their choice, including:
Starting a video advice session online at www.debtfreesouthwest.uk/video
WhatsApp message on 0800 138 3422
Text Message on 07445 124 284
Starting a live web chat online at www.debtfreesouthwest.uk
Calling 0800 138 3422
Debt Free South West’s expansion of ways to access the service supports research from the Money and Mental Health Policy Institute, which was founded by Money Saving Expert, Martin Lewis. The Institute found people experiencing mental health problems are three and a half times more likely to be in problem debt and common symptoms of mental health problems can make engaging with debt advice a challenge, including problems communicating or concentrating making it harder to navigate certain channels. The recommendations include offering multiple channels for clients to choose how to access debt advice.
The expansion of access from Debt Free South West will allow for members of society to have more ways to access debt advice.
The secure video service, the newest feature, allows advisers to return to a face-to-face service during the pandemic, providing communication on a personal level that may have been missing through phone calls and messages. The video chat is both mobile and web enabled through a one button click and does not require an app and an adviser can easily upgrade a client to video during their other methods of communications.
The expansion of services to also include Webchat, WhatsApp and Text Message advice allows for advice to be received in a bitesize way as well as updating existing clients quickly and in an inclusive way.