Macarthur No Interest Loan Scheme (NILS) provides individuals and families on regular fortnightly Centrelink or Department of Veterans’ Affairs benefits an opportunity to apply for an interest free loan.
√ NO fees
√ NO interest
√ NO charges
Loan amounts vary, up to a maximum of $1200, for a variety of goods and services. Loans are repaid over a 12 month period.
A NILS loan is an alternative form of credit. The NILS loan enables people on low incomes the opportunity to purchase significant household items, or services, that can improve their quality of life or enhance social and economic participation where they would otherwise not be able to access fair and affordable credit.
The staff and volunteers at Macarthur NILS work hard to ensure that getting a NILS loan is a positive and beneficial process for everyone involved. We stand by our values to engage, enable and empower those who use our service.
As a program of the Presentation Sisters Wagga, Macarthur No Interest Loan Scheme (MNILS) is based on the principles of social justice with an emphasis on encouraging the values of equity and access, treating people with dignity and respect, and supporting each person to gain increased financial control and empowerment in their life.
Our Vision, Mission and Values
Macarthur NILS Vision
To improve the quality of life of people by facilitating successful financial outcomes.
Macarthur NILS Mission
Macarthur No Interest Loan Scheme provides financial opportunities that engage, enable and empower people to move towards financial inclusion.
Macarthur NILS Values
Engage, Enable, Empower, Respect, Dignity, Advocacy.
No interest loans
Macarthur NILS enables people on low incomes to purchase new products and essential services without having to pay interest at all.
Loans are issued to eligible borrowers from a capital fund. As repayments are made the fund builds up, new loans are issued and the money is recycled within the local community.
Circular Community Credit
Financial Exclusion in Australia
In 2010, 12.8 per cent of all Australians lived under the poverty line and 17.7 per cent of all Australians were either fully excluded or severely excluded from financial services in 2012 (ACOSS, 2012; Connolly, 2013). Australians who face financial hardship and financial exclusion are more likely to seek emergency relief, go without meals or basic necessities, or sell or pawn their possessions (ABS, 2011; Australia, 2012). It is also evident that financially excluded individuals are more likely to use short-term, small amount loans provided by fringe providers who often adopt predatory lending practices and provide loans that carry high interest rates and hidden charges (Banks, Marston, Karger, & Russell, 2012; Marston & Shevellar, 2010; Rivlin, 2011) to buffer against financial shocks or unexpected expenses (Life Changing Loans at No Interest, March 2014, Good Shepherd Microfinance, p.16).
In reality it is extremely difficult for people on low incomes to save the full price of household items such as a fridge, washing machine or an essential service such as car registration or a Greenslip. A NILS loan enables a person to purchase a new appliance, which avoids the trap of maintaining an old and unreliable appliance that may require frequent repairs and is expensive to run, or to keep a car safely on the road without penalty.