A single mother working as an administrative staff, Ms Ang and her teenage daughter live with her parents and younger sister. With just enough to spend each month, Ms Ang wanted to improve the family situation at home. Upon hearing that investing in Scheme X would bring her to riches, she rushed to borrow money from friends in the promise of big returns. The investment scheme apparently was bogus and Ms Ang had to resort to borrowing from both licensed and non-licensed money lenders to settle her debts. As the pressure from these sources led her to panic, she soon turned to immoral means to cope with her outstanding payments.
The immense pressure soon took a toll on her emotionally and mentally as Ms Ang struggled with feelings of guilt, shame, and self-blame. She also lived in fear that her family and employer would find out about her plight.
This resulted to her battling with insomnia, loss of appetite and weight. With quality of life badly affected, she sought help from the Institute of Mental Health (IMH) and was subsequently referred to REACH Family Service for counselling and case management help.
Ms Ang worked closely with our Social Worker and underwent counselling on financial literacy, where through regular monitoring and encouragement, she was able to exercise discipline in adhering to the Debt Repayment Plan assigned, which significantly reduced her financial-induced stress. Our Social Worker also helped her to process and learn from her experience as well as to sustain positive changes in financial management.
Although feeling regretful in having to live with the consequences of her poor judgement, having better manage her finances, Ms Ang is determined to get her life back on track and to keep moving forward to attain larger goals. She has since completed her Higher Certificate in Human Resource.