Financial Wellbeing Prioritised by Sheffield Chamber as Cost of Living Greatens

3rd April 2024

Sheffield Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) has launched a new Financial Wellbeing Support Service to help employees in the city region amid growing cost of living concerns.

Partnering with Mortgage PA, Forest Oak Financial Planning, Money Helper, Step Change Debt Charity, Mind and Sheffield Credit Union, SCCI is offering a brand-new Financial Wellbeing Support Service.

This service, free to access for all Chamber members, is split into two halves: the Financial Wellbeing Support Programme – available to all levels of membership offering a range of support through an online self-serve portal and a Financial Friend Session – available to Premium and Patron members.

Through this service, a financial expert will visit an organisation to offer one-on-one specific, tailored advice for employees.

The introduction of these services comes as the Bank of England reported that UK households and businesses remain under pressure from higher borrowing costs. Interest rates are expected to remain high and more than 1.5 million people are reported to be experiencing both problems with debt and mental health*.

Liam Hughes, Managing Director at Mortgage PA, said:

“One in three people are said to be experiencing anxiety caused by debt related worries or fears over job insecurity or unemployment. Regardless of the industry you work in, financial wellbeing is highly important, both for greater confidence in a business but in the wellbeing of employees too.

“Finance related anxiety, and more specifically debt related stress, is reported to cause sleepless nights, higher chances of anxiety and depression, and diminished social lives which can all lead to lessened wellbeing for individuals.

“We’re grateful to partner with Sheffield Chamber and work together to help those people that are struggling or who want greater confidence in managing their finances.”

Louisa Harrison-Walker, Chief Executive at Sheffield Chamber, said:

“We are really proud that the Chamber can facilitate these kinds of services. Aiding the health and wellbeing of our members and their employees is such a positive thing to be able to do.”

“By partnering with Mortgage PA, Forest Oak Financial Planning, Money Helper, Step Change Debt Charity, Mind and Sheffield Credit Union, we aim to empower individuals and businesses. If we help to reduce anxiety, improve productivity, maintain a healthier workforce we can grow our economy by preventing health-related job losses.”

A key driver behind the introduction of these new services was SCCI’s Health and Wellbeing Consortium that is working to improve the physical, mental and financial health and wellbeing of the working age population.

Chris Bailey, Head of the Sheffield United Community Foundation, who are also sponsors of the consortium, said:

"Financial worry was a key theme highlighted by our employees in our most recent survey. The financial friend service was exactly the type of support we needed to help our people.

“Liam (Mortgage PA) provided a relaxed and flexible environment where staff could speak openly about their finances and receive expert advice, guidance and support that was tailored to them, ultimately resulting in improved knowledge, reduced stress and peace of mind. I highly recommend this to all businesses.”

The consortium aims to deliver a programme of work that positively impacts and improves the physical, financial, and mental health and wellbeing of the working age population.

“The consortium is a place where, by sharing tools, data, and communications, we help educate and aid employers in supporting their employees to better the wellbeing of the people and businesses in Sheffield,” Chris added.

SCCI’s vision is to make Sheffield the best place in the UK to start, grow and run a successful and sustainable business. To find out more about SCCI’s wellbeing services or to get involved with the Financial Wellbeing Support Service, get in touch via www.scci.org.uk/contact/

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