It’s a Great Life Skill. Now He Knows He Can Do it for Other Things
Bruce is a man of many hobbies. To get outside and stay active, he often rides his bike throughout the city – through the Exchange District, St. Boniface, The Forks, Polo Park, Assiniboine Park, and Kildonan Park. He can also be found at Winnipeg’s many pools – Sherbrook, Seven Oaks, Pan Am, and Elmwood Kildonan. At home, Bruce spends a great deal of time kicking back, listening to his extensive collection of used Classic Rock vinyl records.
Dave is Bruce’s support worker and has been biking, swimming, and working with Bruce for five years. Dave’s employer, Maitland B. Steinkopf (MBS) Residence, put the two in touch with SEED Winnipeg, where Bruce was accepted into the Saving Circle program. “They suggested it might be a good opportunity for Bruce to acquire some budgeting skills in a very hands-on and applicable manner.” After successfully completing the course, Bruce applied for an Individual Development Account and began saving in mid-2015.
“Bruce was very focused” says Dave, and completed the program early 2016. According to Bruce, he maintained frugal spending habits by directly targeting and cutting down specific expenses.
It’s a great life skill.
Bruce saved up to buy mostly day-to-day items like kitchenware: pots and pans, a microwave, a toaster, and Tupperware containers, but also included a special purchase that has become a household staple. With SEED’s assistance, Bruce was able to renovate his shower, making it more accessible by installing a seat and a showerhead that is both softer and easier to control.
“It’s a great life skill” adds Dave, “now he knows he can do it for other things; we can target other projects and save up money for those things”. For example, when Manitoba Hydro experienced a power surge, damaging home electronic equipment that was only partially insured, Bruce and Dave transferred those same skills and strategies to finance a full repair.
Dave describes his responsibilities towards Bruce as that of a coach, helping him make “safe, healthy, and reasonable choices”. In that same way, SEED Winnipeg exists within the continuum of community support services, working to empower people to better manage their finances and, by extension, their daily lives.