“The day I only have one job is my day off”: single mother – Europe – International


The calendar on the bedroom wall rebecca kellaway it’s full of highlighted entries, some about her, some about her 10-year-old daughter.

Most entrances are blue, each indicating one of Kellaway’s bends. Sometimes there are three entries per day.

Rebecca Kellaway is a waitress. And caring. And cleaner. And, when she’s not going to work, she’s a single mother to her 10-year-old daughter..

“It’s a real fight,” says the 37-year-old, who lives and works in Norwich, England. “The days I only have paid work are my days off.”

She currently has her main job as a waitress, as well as a janitor and three times housekeeper.

She says she ended up with several part-time jobs because as a single mother she needed work flexibility to accommodate her daughter’s education, holidays and the availability of childcare services (paid).

But his multiple jobs have come at a cost, he says, due to the government’s aid adjustment rate, which reduces the amount paid when a candidate earns more than their “job allowance”.

‘I should be getting £1,000 ($1,100) in aid (a month) but because of the jobs I’m doing I’m losing £350 ($389) in adjustment just like that,’ he says .

“For one of the jobs I do, I get £360 ($400) a month, so it’s basically a direct exchange (for the money lost through the adjustment mechanism), for the money lost .”

Although Kellaway’s monthly income can vary, he is collectively paid around $1,145.

But your profits are consumed more and more due to the rising cost of living.

Your monthly expenses include:

  • Rent: $400
  • Tourist tax: 88 USD
  • Freight: $81
  • Energy: 66 USD (reduced rate agreed with your supplier)
  • Lunch: $133
  • Babysitter: $5.50 per hour during the day or $10 at night

The biggest price increases, he says, have been in the cost of food.

“It’s little things, like groceries, that cost around US$1.10 per item, which adds up quickly.”

“I use the price scanner at the supermarket to keep track, and pretty soon I hit $55, and then I have to think about what I’m going to pay back.”

“What I need to be able to survival is long term planning, to be able to know what I will be doing in a month, because everything has to be budgeted down to the last penny”.

Kellaway says he’s doing everything he can to cut costs.

She does the dishes once every three days to limit the amount of hot water she uses, she thinks about every time she wants a cup of tea for the price of electricity to boil her kettle, and she dries her clothes in the middle of the living room bedroom instead of using a dryer.

“The stress of worrying about all this, and being a mother, a single mother, plus jobs and things around the house, is just too much.”

Over the past year, Kellaway has saved as much as she can to pay for her daughter’s 10th birthday party.

The party, held at a trampoline center, was exactly what her daughter wanted.

But the US$330 cost meant Kellaway couldn’t afford such a big freebie.

“I had to say, ‘It’s your present,’ and she was very understanding about it and I actually found some money to buy something small,” he says.

“But it’s a very bad thing, to have to tell a child that you cannot, as a mother, afford buy her a present because you spent all the money on a party.

“It shouldn’t be like that.”

Kellaway would love to go on vacation, but adds, “It’s not really real, it’s more like a dream.”

“I realize that I can’t afford to buy things like clothes or a new pair of shoes without holes because I know the food money is gone or my daughter could use it for things she needs.”

“I can’t remember the last time I went to a supermarket and bought what I wanted without adding up as I went.”

“That’s what it all says: after working all those hours, if you don’t have enough money in your account to shop and buy what you want, then there’s bound to be something wrong. not.”

“It’s really difficult when your child asks you to buy him a magazine and you have to say ‘no’.”

“Daily life is very expensive and frustrating.”

“Life is even dearer when you are in the poverty because you can’t afford to buy things in bulk.

“It’s a real trap.”

And yet, Kellaway likes to work.

“I’m stuck doing pretty low-paying jobs,” she says. “They are really rewarding, but they don’t pay much.”

On a chair in Kellaway’s bedroom is a painting of her. It was painted by one of the people she cares for, an artist with multiple sclerosis.

“Caring work is extremely important, being able to support someone in need is a privilege and it really matters, and yet it is a minimum wage“.

If Kellaway received a magic wand, what would he do?

“It would remove the adjustment rate (on government aid) so people get paid to work, subsidize childcare appropriately and pump a lot of money into schools for breakfasts and after-school clubs. school.”

“There seems to be an idea that people are just sitting on their butts, but we want to go out there and earn a living wage.”

Kellaway hopes to retrain as a counselor or psychotherapist in the future. He started his studies last year, but the demands of the job and motherhood prevented it.

He says he will try again when his daughter is a bit older.

“I keep myself as happy and busy as possible,” she says. “But when my daughter sleeps, yeah, I get really depressed.”I’m really very tired“.

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BBC-NEWS-SRC: https://www.bbc.com/mundo/noticias-internacional-63345832, IMPORT DATE: 2022-10-24 04:10:06

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