Many people experience problems with their finances in one way or another over their lifetime. This can be for many reasons. The most important thing to do is to get help.

Debt advice work is life changing. It’s not just about money, it is about enabling people to escape from circumstances that have blighted their lives.

"The day I met the CMACD advisor was one of the best days of my life. She has sorted everything out for me, put everything into simple terms and order. I am now trying, with her help, to sort myself out and going forward one day at a time"

Debt can cause the breakdown of relationships, ill-health, homelessness, depression, fear, anger and shame. It can also potentially lead to serious addiction problems and even suicide.

Community Money Advice County Durham offer a free, non-judgemental, confidential service for anyone struggling with financial issues, debt or managing their money. We offer appointments in person at a number of foodbank centres across the county, for details of opening times please see the list at the end of this page. We can also advise by telephone, email, post or video link. In special circumstances we can arrange home visits.  Our advisers will work with you in a method which you feel most the comfortable.

How we work

At the first meeting with you we gather information on your current situation and address any urgent matters such as threats of bailiff action, repossession or court actions.

We will contact the companies you have debts with and put your accounts on hold until we can evaluate your case. We will work through your income and expenditure, making sure you are claiming any benefits to which you may qualify, and we help you create a budget for your day to day expenses.

We will review your situation and explain to you the options you have to deal with your debts.  Then we help you to implement the solution that you have decided to take.   If you do not have enough money to repay your creditors, we will help you find alternative solutions including helping you through a legal insolvency procedure such as a debt relief order or bankruptcy if needed.


Clients often come to us feeling a range of emotions about their financial situation but stress is usually high on that list.  We deal with any immediate threats such as evictions, repossessions and bailiffs to put such actions on hold whilst we review the situation and then explain the options available to deal with the problem. We reduce the stress of debt to help people understand where they are; we take the burden off their shoulders by being a shield from the threatening letters; we give them a plan, make arrangements and negotiate agreements. When appropriate we can arrange for debts to be written off.   Our clients can have more hope, they are back in control of their situation and they can see hope beyond the spiral of debt. 

Make a positive move today 

We look forward to meeting you and helping you find the right way forward

Contact details:  [email protected]

                        call and leave a message on 0191 3037514

                        or complete the contact us enquiry form on this website.

CMACD is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority and affiliated to the national charity Community Money Advice www.communitymoneyadvice.com .  All advice is completely free, unconditional and confidential.

Location

 Consultation day

Opening Times

Address

Annfield Plain

Tuesday (telephone)

Thursday (drop in)

13:00 to 15:00

Annfield Plain Community Centre, 23 Front, Annfield Plain, DH9 7SY

Brandon

Tuesday (in person by appointment)

13:00 to 15:00

Brandon Community Centre, Brandon Lane, DH7 8SH

Chester le Street

Monday, Wednesday & Friday (in person by appointment)

10:00 to 12:30

Bethel Church, Low Chare, Chester le Street, DH3 5HL

Chilton

Monday (by telephone)

10:00 to 12:00

St Aidans Church, Eden Terrace, Chilton. DL17 0EJ

Crook

Tuesday (by telephone)

10.00 - 12.30

Salvation Army, Queen Street, Crook, DL15 8QQ

Consett

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday (by telephone)

Wednesday (drop in)

10:00 to 12:00

Consett Methodist Church, Station Road, Consett, DH8 5RL

Durham City

Monday, Wednesday & Friday (in person by appointment)

12:30 to 14:30

Waddington Street URC, Waddington Street, Durham, DH1 4BG

Durham Elvet

Tuesday (by telephone)

13:30 to 15:00

Elvet Methodist Church, 8 Old Elvet, Durham, DH1 3HL

Durham Gilesgate

Saturday (by telephone)

9:30 to 11:30

Durham City Baptist Church, Edge Court, Durham, DH1 2JY

Ferryhill

Thursday (alternate weeks by appointment)

10:00 to 12:00

St Luke’s Church Hall, Church Lane, Ferryhill, DL17 8LT

Newton Aycliffe

Wednesday & Friday (by telephone) 

13:30 to 15:30

St Clare’s Church, St Cuthberts Way, Newton Aycliffe, DL5 5NT

Sedgefield

Wednesday (by telephone)

9:00 to 12:00

Sedgefield Town Council, Front Street, Sedgefield, TS21 3AT

Shildon

Monday & Thursday (by telephone)

12:14:00

Salvation Army, Cross Street, Shildon, DL4 1PF

Spennymoor Trinity

Tuesday (in person by appointment)

10:00 to 12:00

Trinity Methodist Church, Edward Street, Spennymoor, DL16 7NB

Spennymoor St Pauls

Friday (in person by appointment)

10:00 to 12:00

St Paul’s Centre, Whitworth Terrace, Spennymoor, DL16 7SL

Stanley

Monday (in person by appointment)

Friday (drop in)

10:00 to 12:00

The Venue, Wear Road, Stanley, DH9 6LU

Trimdon Station

Friday (by telephone)

10:00 to 12:00

Trimdon Station Community Centre, Station Road, Trimdon Station, TS29 6BS

West Auckland

Wednesday, Thursday & Friday (by telephone)

10:00 to 14:00

The Well, 46 East green, West Auckland, DL14 9HJ

Willington

Wednesday (by telephone)

14:15 to 16:00

Willington Open Door Methodist Church, Wesley Street, Willington, DL15 0AG

 

Durham Christian Partnership

 Privacy Notice – Community Money Advice County Durham

Personal data

When you seek help from Community Money Advice County Durham which is part of Durham Christian Partnership (DCP), we keep some information about you.  This is "personal data", because it is about you as a particular person, and it can be linked to you.

What personal data do we hold?

CMA COUNTY DURHAM will keep the information that is on your initial contact form which you will have signed.  That means we will keep your name, contact details, gender, date of birth, national insurance number, marital status, household make up, including sex and date of birth of all members and names of anyone you are connected to financially – usually current partner but may include ex-partners or other family members - housing status including if there are arrears, whether your current account is overdrawn and any problems with energy suppliers,  who referred you to us and their contact details.

CMA COUNTY DURHAM will keep further information which we gather at your interviews about you and, where relevant, other members of your household, such as health issues including healthcare professionals involved and medication, employment, income including sources, expenditure including union subscriptions, details of assets, creditors and debts, Court cases and judgements, credit reports, grant applications and provision, and safeguarding information.

Confirmation of advice will be recorded and given to you after each advice session outlining what was discussed and if any actions had been agreed and by whom. You have the opportunity to choose how you wish to receive this confirmation of advice or waive your right to it if you so wish.

All CMA COUNTY DURHAM clients will be given a copy of their financial statement and offered copies of all paperwork generated in line with the Financial Conduct Authority regulations.

All advisers will check with clients what methods of contact are acceptable such as phoning at home or work, email and personal visitation, before any contact is made in these ways.

We keep originals and electronic copies of documents you sign including the self-referral form, client contract and authorisations to act on your behalf. We also keep letters, e-mails and other information from creditors and other people concerning your situation.

CMA COUNTY DURHAM will store your personal data in a database provided by Community Money Advice (CMA).  Use of the database (which is called Catalyst) helps keep your data securely and in a way it can be used to contact your creditors and resolve your problems and provides for the personal data to be updated.

In the event of a complaint, accusation or legal matter, this will be recorded separately.  An investigation in such circumstances might involve an Internet search. This is the only data DCP/CMA COUNTY DURHAM will usually hold about you.  We do not get data about you in any other way.

How is your personal data kept safe?

Electronic copies of correspondence with you are stored on Catalyst or DCP's secure network.

Your information on the secured Catalyst database is stored in the UK.

What is your data used for?

Your data is only used for purposes directly relating to your need for our help particularly:

  1. To communicate with you about your needs and goals and advice given/ actions required.
  2. To manage and assist with resolving your outstanding debts or benefit claims.
  3. To identify, refer to and monitor referrals to other organisations that can assist you.
  4. To arrange or provide you with appropriate support in the event of an emergency

On rare occasions it may be necessary to disclose your confidential information where:

  1. The safety, rights and liberties of the person giving the information or others may be seriously at risk
  2. Legal reports have to be made regardless of the consent of the person involved eg where we become aware of risk to a child or of potential terrorist activity.

When confidential information is divulged without consent the individual concerned will be, wherever possible, informed and an explanation of the action given, except where it might result in more harm to other people or when prohibited by law.

 

Does DCP have a right to your data?

Under Data Protection legislation, DCP/CMA COUNTY DURHAM needs to have a lawful basis for keeping your data, and for using it.  There are several types of lawful basis. In the context of your relationship with CMA COUNTY DURHAM the relevant lawful bases will be that you have given your consent for processing of your personal data and the legitimate interests of DCP/CMA COUNTY DURHAM.

These legitimate interests are that DCP/CMA COUNTY DURHAM needs to hold and use the personal data of you and your household in order to ensure the suitability of any advice given and to manage its activities.

DCP/CMA COUNTY DURHAM needs this personal data to manage the relationship with CMA COUNTY DURHAM clients and referral agencies.  You are required to provide personal information in order access CMA COUNTY DURHAM support so that we can give you the best advice based on your circumstances. You may with-hold sensitive personal information ( eg on your health, sexual orientation or union membership) but should be aware that this may restrict our ability to give you the best advice for your circumstances.

As a religious body, DCP may lawfully keep data including the religious affiliation of those in regular contact.  Such information will not be disclosed without consent.

Who can see your data?

The people who have access to your data are the Chief Executive of DCP, his administrative staff, CMA staff and Catalyst database providers and CMA COUNTY DURHAM debt advisers and administrators, both paid and volunteers.  We are as careful as possible to make sure no one else has access to your data, without your prior written consent, except where we may be required to provide information by law. 

How long will your data be kept?

Your data is kept while you are a client of CMA COUNTY DURHAM and for six years after we close your case. You will be sent a letter to your last known address when we close your file and the six years will start from that date.

After six years your records will be destroyed, unless there is a reason why we are still in touch with you about your time as a client or the data is being held for research or statistical purposes.

Statistics gathered to monitor the service for the purposes of identifying any policy issues and to support funding applications will be produced in anonymous form to prevent identification of individual users.

Who can you speak to if you have questions?

DCP acts as a "data controller". 

If you have questions about your data, and what we do with it, you should contact the Chief Executive of DCP:

[email protected]

Durham Christian Partnership

Units 7/9
First Avenue
Drum Industrial
Chester Le Street
DH2 1AG

What rights do you have?

You have a number of rights under Data Protection legislation:

1. Right to access your personal data

You have a right to know what personal data we hold about you.  This Privacy Notice describes the data we will hold about you.  But you can ask if we have any other data about you which is not covered by this Privacy Notice.

You can ask for a copy of the data we hold about you.  This is called a "subject access request".  If you wish to make a subject access request then contact the Chief Executive of DCP (see contact details above).  We will provide a copy of your personal data within one month. Proof of identity will need to be received prior to any information being released.

2. Right to have your data corrected

If you think there is a mistake in your data, please contact your debt adviser (who was named in the initial letter you received and signed to agree to how we may contact you). You have a right to have it corrected.  We may need to check what is the correct data, but will put right any mistakes as soon as possible.

3. Right to object to processing

You have a right to object to further processing of your data.  If you wish to object, please contact the Chief Executive of DCP (see contact details above).  We will then stop the processing unless there are strong reasons for continuing it, for example in relation to a legal claim.

4. Right to erasure

You have the right to erasure of your data if it is no longer needed or if you object to the processing and there is no overriding reason to continue.

We will normally erase your data six years after you stop being a client, unless further processing is necessary for research purposes, to comply with a legal obligation or in relation to a legal claim or possible legal claim.

If you wish for your data to be erased, please contact the Chief Executive of DCP (see contact details above).

5. Right to restriction of processing

You have a right to restrict processing of your personal data if:

  • the accuracy of your data is contested; or
  • your data is processed unlawfully; or
  • you need the data for a legal claim; or
  • you have objected to further processing and the legal basis for any further processing is being checked.

If you wish to restrict processing, please contact the Chief Executive of DCP (see contact details above). If you exercise this right, we will only continue processing:

  • with your consent; or
  • in relation to a legal claim; or
  • to protect the rights of others; or
  • for reasons of important public interest.

 If we restrict processing of your data, we will inform you before lifting the restriction.

 6. Right to make a complaint about processing of your data

If you wish to make a complaint about what we do with your data, please contact the Chief Executive of DCP (see contact details above). 

If you are unhappy with the response of the Chief Executive of DCP, you have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner at:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House, Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

7. Right not to be subjected to a decision based only on automated processing

CMA COUNTY DURHAM/DCP does not use automated processing to make decisions about its clients.

Finally, if anything happens to your data that could be a risk to you, we will do our best to tell you.