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 STOKE-ON-TRENT, NEWCASTLE-UNDER-LYME, STAFFORDSHIRE MOORLANDS, SOUTH CHESHIRE

Residents say free maths courses helped them manage their money better in cost-of-living crisis


Free numeracy courses provided by a county council-led initiative has taught residents how to manage their household budgets to ease cost-of-living pressures.


As part of the Multiply programme, the county council is working with learning and skills organisations to provide courses that boost people’s confidence with numbers and help them to get maths qualifications.


Topics of these courses include household budgeting, banking, shopping, and debt management.


Beatrice, from Great Wyrley, completed a ‘Nifty Numbers’ course with Steps To Work as part of this free programme.


She said: “I’ve learnt to make my shopping budget stretch and, as long as I have paid my bills, I don’t need to worry about tomorrow.”


Beatrice said the course helped her understand the importance of money management in everyday life and how checking the weight of food items in shops makes a big difference when planning for meals.


To people considering undertaking a Multiply course, Beatrice said: “Go for it. It is not what you would expect. There is no need to worry, everything is explained really well and the tutor is great.”


David Cutts, from Burntwood, also took the same Multiply Course and urges others to “give it a go.”


He said: “It has made me think more carefully about my budgeting and has helped me to improve planning my monthly budget.”


Staffordshire County Council secured £4.2million from the Government as part of the £570million Multiply scheme.


It is a three-year fully funded programme, giving people the opportunity to learn both online and in person when and where they want.


Staffordshire County Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for economy and skills Philip White said: “In this current economic climate, having the numeracy skills to be able to budget efficiently is crucial to easing financial pressure at home.


“The Multiply programme provides free and accessible help to people who want to improve their maths skills including care leavers, employees needing specific numeracy skills for work, parents wanting to support their children with homework, homeowners looking to improve their money management or those aiming to obtain qualifications that could lead to employment.


“If you are aged 19 and above, live in Staffordshire and do not already have a GCSE maths grade C or equivalent, please get in touch. The courses are free and tailored to you with online, in-person and one-to-one guidance sessions.”


People can find out more about the programme at: https://bit.ly/ExploreFreeCourses

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