Breaking the Cycle of Debt: How Proper Financial Management Can Help Teachers
As a teacher, it’s no secret that our salaries can sometimes be stretched thin. With the cost of living consistently on the rise, many of us have turned to loan companies for financial assistance.
However, the reality is that these loan companies, such as Dalex Bayport and Izwe, often have high interest rates and can ultimately lead to a cycle of debt and financial struggles.
In fact, a study conducted by the National Bureau of Statistics found that nearly 60% of teachers in Ghana are currently struggling with loan repayment. This not only affects the individual teachers, but also the profession as a whole as it tarnishes the image of teachers in the eyes of the public.
But, the problem isn’t a lack of money. It’s largely a lack of discipline, patience, and proper financial management. Many teachers take out loans to invest in businesses or build their own homes, but fail to do the necessary calculations to ensure that the loan will be enough to complete the project. This often results in the project being left incomplete and the business failing, leading to even more debt.
Additionally, many teachers turn to loans for further education, but fail to consider the long-term effects on their finances. The remaining take-home pay often can’t meet the needs, leading to the need for even more loans. This cycle can continue, with the teacher taking out multiple loans and relying on overdrafts to make ends meet.
The consequences of this cycle can be dire. Teachers may avoid family and social events out of fear of being embarrassed about their financial struggles. They may even request transfer to a new school. Some go into retirement, with a large portion of their retirement benefits being used to pay off their loans.
But, there is hope. By taking the time to properly plan and manage our finances, we can break free from the cycle of debt. This may involve setting a budget and sticking to it, looking for ways to increase our income, or seeking financial advice from a professional.
As the Bible verse Luke 14:28 reminds us, “For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?”
In conclusion, the problem facing teachers is not a lack of money, but rather a lack of discipline, patience, and proper financial management. By taking the time to plan and manage our finances, we can break free from the cycle of debt and live a more financially stable and fulfilling life.
Hon Jerry Akporhor _ Founder and Lead Educator @ Informed Teachers Network