When Mataali* joined Monte Cecilia’s F.A.I.T.H. Money Programme, she and her husband were struggling to make their income to stretch through the week. But three months later she is able to consistently make sure her family has everything it needs.

The key that made such a big difference in their financial situation, she says, was the F.A.I.T.H. Money Programme’s lessons around figuring out what was a need and what was a want, then going to the store with just a list of their needs.

“We used to just go in and grab whatever looked good,” Mataali says. “But now we’re much more focused when we go to the shops, with a list of what we’re after.”

The biggest impact has come from recognizing that her husband’s smoking was a want, rather than a need, and working out that it was costing them $110-$150 per week. Armed with this information, he has taken the step of stopping and putting that money toward the family’s needs each week.

“Seeing stories like Mataali’s is really inspiring,” F.A.I.T.H. Programme coordinator Evan Teiti says. “By equipping her and her husband with the right tools they’ve been able to really take charge of their financial situation.”

*not her real name