The repayment plan Liz has from Way Forward has given her the space to ‘do life’ again

This is my story

Liz ended up in financial hardship when she lost her job. Luckily, she found work again but this time but her new role paid much less. This severely impacted her ability to meet her loan repayments.  

She hopes to one day find work that pays a higher wage but, in the meantime, Way Forward has put together a plan, which is helping to repay her loans. She is clear on her priorities and the benefits of having a budget and spending with purpose.  

Fundamentally, she credits taking professional financial guidance as giving her the confidence to improve her situation, and recommends people who have experiencing that same, should reach out for assistance.  

“People think it is health and other things, but financial professional help is real. It’s the first one people should go for it to resolve the other problems. 

“Being willing to want to change your financial situation to live the life you want, rather than dealing with the stress of it all and leading into health or mental complications and unhappiness.  

“If we didn’t have the financial challenges, and had extra money saved, this pandemic wouldn’t have been about finances at all would have been about how am I going to be mentally, dealing with not meeting people or doing things as normal?  

Liz initially reach out to her bank for hardship support. They were able to quickly provide options for smaller regular repayment amounts. However, she was unable to meet those smaller repayments and needed further assistance.   

“Left, right and centre, everybody is looking for financial hardship during COVID. You feel like the banks have refined and improved their processes to try and help people better. 

Liz was referred to Way Forward by CommBank. Way Forward negotiated a payment plan where interest was reduced, repayment time frames extended, and no exit fees.  

Liz has been working with Way Forward Hardship Advocate Matthew, who helped her with her budget.   

“It was so simple. Like we had just two conversations, to just look at my budget, to send back a completed spreadsheet. And we had one more call just to finalise the entire thing. 

“After speaking to Matthew and really looking at it he clarified that has nothing to do with insolvency or bankruptcy it’s just a matter of getting on track with paying off the bills. 

“Knowing when I’m exactly going to make payments, it gave me clarity that, I’m not going to overspend because I can save money even if I’m not earning a lot.

“And any questions I had, I would speak with Matthew and he would immediately provide me the answers.  

“This just gave me hope to save and continue on with life, rather than stressing out. 

“And I get to do things that I normally do and not have to cut out the simple things in life. 

 Liz now has plans for the future.  

 I wanted to always buy a family home and I think it looks hopeful for me right now. 

 I’m really committed to is that I pay this off as quickly as possible. But at the same time, I know that I will have the chance to budget better and it’s given me a lot more confidence that I’ve got the support I need right now.” 


Struggling to pay for the essentials such as food and rent and want to know more about your options? Our emergency funding page lists some of the available free emergency services and funding if you live in Australia and find yourself in financial difficulty.

By James Hoang

James manages Way Forward’s financial hardship team. He supports them to advocate for the vulnerable people in our communities who are facing financial difficulties.