The following is an important piece of information from the ILCU about what you can do if you’ve been affected by changes to uniform grants in Northern Ireland:

With around 98,000 pupils benefitting from a school uniform grant last year, proposed cuts to the Education Authority’s Uniform grant of £3million are poised to impact thousands of families in Northern Ireland this summer. And while school might seem like a distant memory for young people as they kick off their summer break, it’s a different story for parents. For those already struggling to meet the costs of kitting the kids out for school, and particularly those who have relied upon the uniform grant to alleviate some of that burden, the proposed cuts announced could have significant impact on their family finances.

Research carried out by the Irish League of Credit Unions in 2015 found that 71% of parents felt school associated costs were a financial burden with 17% saying they would have to sacrifice spending on food in order to cover the costs. Six in ten also admitted that they would have to sacrifice other household items in order to buy school necessities. It’s perhaps not surprising that over a quarter of parents found themselves in debt and were borrowing an average of £320.

We have always been on hand to provide financial assistance to parents as they try to cope with education-related costs. Offering a Back to School loan can ensure that the loan terms are structured in a way to suit every individual situation best. There are no hidden payments or transaction fees, and the loan is less expensive than using a credit card or moneylender.

In light of the recent announcement by the Education Authority, we would encourage families who rely upon the uniform grant to come in and talk to us about possible options. Parents should shop around for value, both in-store and online to see where they can get the best deals.

If you find yourself in need of a loan to cover school costs, you can come into either of our offices anytime to see about borrowing. Click here to head back to our homepage, where you can find our contact details, opening hours and Loan Calculator, which will tell you the total cost of payments on any loan you might be hoping to apply for. If you’re certain you want to borrow, you can also use the Loan Enquiry option to speed up the process.