Minister maintains keen interest in Lismore loans scheme
THE Lismore-based No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS) helped more than 500 families in the past 12 months and the minister responsible for funding it, Stuart Ayres, said it "punched well above its weight" and "changed people's lives".
The Fair Trading Minister was in Lismore and Ballina for a series of engagements relating to his portfolio but made a point of stopping off at the Northern Rivers Community Gateway (formerly the Lismore Neighbourhood Centre) to talk about NILS and the financial counselling service.
He said NILS was able to assist people who may otherwise fall victim to "the scourge of payday lenders" - private money lenders that charge exorbitant interest for short-term loans - that ultimately get people into more financial difficulty.
"This community organisation has now loaned over $2 million through NILS and changed lives for the better," Mr Ayres said.