Perry Wellness Center, as a wellness and recovery program, teaches many practical skills to individuals in addition to helping people learn to manage mental illness. For example, almost all of us can use a little help with money management from time to time, and Perry Wellness Center peers are no exception. As many have limited incomes due to an inability to work full-time, it is particularly important that our peers have an ability to budget.
Recently, certified peer specialist Ric Vogt led a group discussion on establishing a personal budget. She began by sharing the practical steps in creating a budget, including: Identify Goals, Review Resources, Calculate Costs, and Create Workable Budget.
Ric also provided a formula for establishing a reasonable budget: 50% for NEEDS, 30% for WANTS, and 20% for SAVINGS. Many people put their short-term “wants” above their current and future needs, and this formula provides a simple way to balance these competing demands on our funds.
Peers were also reminded to take into consideration any changes in their cost of living or income. Ric explained, “We must be aware of the changing costs of food, housing, utilities, transportation, insurance, and recurring debt.”
PWC founder and CEO Stuart Perry was present, and he echoed the need to be aware of unexpected expenses. “All of us can expect changes in our lives,” he said. “A sickness, an accident, an unexpected cost of medical charges can be an unexpected additional monthly expense.”
Stuart acknowledged that he was applying discussions of budgeting to his own review of operational expenses for Perry Wellness Center. Practical peer group discussions such as these can help make everyone a more savvy consumer.
In the photo above, Ric Vogt and Stuart Perry share thoughts on the importance of establishing a workable budget.