Family First Media Release 12 Dec 2010
Family Family First NZ is encouraging families to set strict spending limits leading up to Christmas Day to avoid high debt and credit card payments, and stress and hardship during the January holidays and when school restarts.
“We want to encourage families to focus on planning and spending time with families, and giving gifts that aren’t necessarily expensive but are still thoughtful,” says Bob McCoskrie, National Director of Family First NZ.
“There can be a huge expectation to spend large amounts on gifts at Christmas time. We’d encourage families to remember to budget for family activities together over January and also allow for the usual school start-up costs in February – including school fees, uniforms, and stationery costs.”
“Financial stress can cause real problems for families over the holiday season and unfortunately is a major contributor to family violence over this period. The next few months can be a real challenge financially for families – but careful planning can avoid some of that pressure,” says Mr McCoskrie. “We would especially warn families to avoid loan sharks and instant cash which incurs very high interest rates.”
“While children will initially be excited by expensive gifts, their long lasting memories will be around family time and activities together.”