Karen Farrow, chief officer of Just Credit Union, said: “Christmas 2020 was a record year for Just Credit Union and we are delighted we were able to help so many people across the county with ethical and affordable loans.
“All of our Christmas Saver Loans came with a savings account so people will be able to start to build a safety net for the coming year, or use the savings to pay for Christmas 2021.
“I think we are all aware that this is going to be a challenging year, particularly financially, for many. We would therefore encourage people to have a look at their income and expenditure and set a budget.
“Our advice to people is have a look at your bank statements and see whether there are things like subscriptions that you no longer need and can be cancelled. Similarly, are there any benefits that you are entitled to that you are not claiming.
“The news section of our website provides access to a new tool that can help. It takes as little as 30 seconds filling out some details and you receive free tailored guidance that will help you understand what you need to prioritise, what you could be entitled to and which organisations can help.
"Finally, try and put some money away into a secure savings account – no matter how little.”
She said Just Credit Union, of Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin, offers secure savings accounts which are fully protected and give instant access to the savings.
People across the county can save regular amounts, or lump sums as and when, and can even have benefits like child benefits paid directly into their savings accounts.
She added: “Borrowing and saving with Just Credit Union helps others who live in the local community.
"As all the money is lent in the county and the local members are the owners of the co-operative, it also supports the local economy during the challenging times ahead.”
The new tool can be accessed at www.justcreditunion.org and for further information contact email@example.com