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Mdm Tan’s Co-operative Story

Despite her husband having gotten retrenched and resorted to work as a security guard, Mdm Tan*, 60, and her three sons were leading a comfortable lifestyle with her S$10,000 a month salary as a senior healthcare worker. However, a sudden turn of events brought her family’s financial stability down a spiral when two major crises hit during the same period, plunging Mdm Tan into the pits.

son heavily in debtA series of misfortunate events began to unfold when Mdm Tan’s eldest son fell into a heavy debt after a failed business. It turned out that the son’s business partners had fled to their home country, leaving him to confront the mounting debts alone. At about the same period of time, the family faced another blow when Mdm Tan’s husband got into a traffic accident that caused him to lose his right foot and his job. The husband subsequently fell into depression.

“The chain of events wiped out all my savings of about $300,000. It was still not enough to help my son,” Mdm Tan said.

At her wits end, Mdm Tan turned to banks and licensed moneylenders for loans to tie her family through. For a $50,000 loan, she had to fork out a staggering $9,000 every month for interest repayment. The payment did not even reduce the principle sum of the loan. Her peril was that of sinking into quicksand with no sign of light at the end of the tunnel.

“I could not eat nor sleep. I didn’t know the way out. Every month my take home pay went into paying the loan interest,” Mdm Tan said.

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Her friend who knew about her predicament introduced her to Singapore Statutory Boards Employees’ Co-operative Thrift and Loan Society Limited. The introduction was life changing. Upon listening to Mdm Tan’s struggles and her credit history, within 48 hours SSBEC approved Mdm Tan’s five-year loan of S$60,000 with an interest of S$1,300 per month.

“I could finally manage my finances. I could finally breathe and sleep better,” she said. No longer did she feel trapped with no way out of mental and financial struggle.

This is Mdm Tan’s co-operative story, and may it be of help to individuals who may be facing a similar struggle. Credit co-operatives are there to render support, hence do reach out for help!

*not her real name

 

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Singapore National Co-operative Federation
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Email: sncf@sncf.org.sg
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