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How we’re reducing the harm of problem debt

Download the 2016-2017 report

Looking for the most recent impact report?

This page gives a summary of our 2016-2017 impact report. You can find the latest details on how we're reducing the harm of problem debt in our Impact Report for 2018.

Our impact report for 2016 – 2017

Our vision is a society free of problem debt. Our impact report takes a look at the positive change we’re making to the lives of people in, and at risk of, problem debt across the UK.

Record numbers of people are asking us for help with debt they can no longer manage. 925,665 people contacted us for advice between January 2016 and June 2017.

The people we help

The top causes of problem debt we see in our clients are job loss or unemployment (19%), injury or illness (16%), reduced income (12%), and separation and divorce (10%).

21% of our clients are single parents (compared to 7% of the UK population)

Our advice and solutions help people recover from problem debt. In the 18 months to June 2017, 457,270 clients successfully completed a debt advice session with us.

30,000 clients became free of problem debt with our help

Influencing change

Our campaigning and partnership work helps prevent and reduce the harm of problem debt by influencing change in industry practice, regulation and government policy.

6/10 clients said their financial situation stabilised once creditors agreed to freeze further interest, charges and enforcement action

Following manifesto commitments from the two main parties to our Breathing Space proposal, the Treasury launched a call for evidence on how to implement such a scheme.

The difference we make

Our clients often describe the relief they feel when the harassment calls stop and interest or charges no longer escalate their debts.

We also know that our clients are less likely than other consumers to go into subsequent arrears on their utility bills and, when they did, ended up owing less.

94% of our clients were very or quite likely to recommend us to others

As the need for free debt advice grows, we’re committed to doing even more. Download our impact report 2016-2017 to read how we’re tackling problem debt.

Download the report

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What clients say

Linda, Suffolk

"I'm incredibly relieved and so glad I made the decision to contact StepChange. The steps I'm taking now really have changed my life."

Alison, Surrey

"I spent many sleepless nights trying to figure out what to do. StepChange has helped me in a way I would never have thought possible."

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