It’s not an easy subject to talk about but reserving your finances in this hard economy is vital for your survival.
Inflation is rocketing, taxation is out of line with what people can afford and obscene fuel prices are now making it difficult to travel even to collect groceries or go to work.
The world is overflowing with uncertainty. This country has increasingly high levels of political uncertainty coupled with economic uncertainty. Many people are at a loss about what to do.
For some of the good days are over. Others are scrimping and eching out a living.
Some very unfortunate people have reached rock bottom. Without income and rising costs they are quoting a pincers that is squeezing out life from them.
A recent case that came to my attention underscores the desperation that people are going through. A person has lost a job through retrenchment. Age is against this person in finding another job. The person has a high level of debt. There is very little food on the table. Soon there will be no roof over their head.
In these difficult times one would think of that people in desperate circumstances could reach out to their extended family. But families and relations or having it hard too. It’s impossible for them to take on other family without compromising their family.
This is the situation that it has been playing out since Covid. The economy is bad. Employers to keep profits have retrenched. Other companies and businesses have shut their doors. Existing employees are working harder with more workload as other employees leave.
And worst of all, many have had to go live on the streets. Pension money has run out and there is no money for rental accommodation or medical aid. I saw this firsthand in 2nd Avenue, Fish Hoek, Cape Town. Ordinary people gather at night to sleep on the street. I metro official mentioned earlier in the year that there are about 100 people sleeping at night at Fish Hoek railway station.
I see a man sleeping in Jan Smuts Avenue, Randburg , behind the rubbish bin. Another man Who lives next to the Braamfontein Spruit lights a fire every night from 8 PM to 11 PM to keep warm from the winter cold. And there are many others.
What’s there to do? What are the answers?
One of the problems is that many people are one paycheck away from financial disaster.
You can’t blame them because the little that they earn has to go towards daily living expenses.
For those who have income and their circumstances are relatively comfortable despite the growing cost-of-living, isn’t it time to reflect on what they would need to do to keep the wolf from their door?