Girl, 9, fears becoming homeless as her mum relies on charity for food and logs to heat home

  • Bryony told Dani Crawshaw how painting helps distract her from worrying about money.

A nine-year-old girl has said she worries about becoming homeless, as the cost of living crisis deepens, and describes how she likes to paint to take her mind off the stress.

Bryony Chalmers lives in Melton Mowbray with her mum Danielle. She's aware of her mum's recent struggles to get by financially, especially during the Easter holidays, and worries that the family might soon run out of money.

"I do find it quite stressful" she says. "That's why me and my cousin tend to do painting quite a lot, which helps me out with thinking that we might run out of money, or that we might go homeless."

Danielle says she's only getting by with the help of a food bank, because she has so little left over after topping up her pay as you go energy meter.

She's also had help from a local charity to pay for logs, so she can heat one room in her house.

"I'm really really struggling - it's only with help from the food bank and things that I'm getting by. 

"It's just a constant, constant play on my mind, what am I going to do?

"What am I going to feed them, how am I going to put electric on, I've gone days without gas and heating because I can't afford to put it on."

She says feels sad and disappointed that she's not been able to organise treats during the recent holidays, and instead has turned to activities, like painting, with limited costs.

"My two are very aware of what's going on, they're very aware of how much I'm struggling, they've seen me break down in tears because of how much I'm struggling - but they never ask for anything.

"I hate not being able to take them places when I know they're going to go back to school and their friends would have gone places and done stuff."

The family have enjoyed time together despite their money worries but research from Compare the Market revealed more than a quarter of households with children in the Midlands have found it difficult to pay bills over the last few weeks.

Nearly 70% of people feel more pessimistic about their finances compared to last year.