Life is always going to be a bumpy road. You get a flat tire, there's a leak in the house, or you lose your stable job in the middle of a global pandemic. For many of us, that last one hits particularly close to home. If there's one thing COVID-19 has taught us, it's how fragile our economy actually is.
In February of this year, I decided to take a leap of faith and leave a very comfortable and well-paid position at a tech company to become an independent contractor. Two weeks later, the entire world shut down. By April, I lost two of my biggest contracts. Oh, and I got my first flat tire!
And yet I'm in an incredibly privileged position compared to so many Canadians during this time. I had my emergency fund. I qualified for CERB. And in the worst possible case, I have family to fall back on.
Feeling grateful for the position I was in got me thinking about how everyone else is surviving the pandemic financially. According to CIBC, 45% of Canadians have no funds set aside to deal with emergency expenses. This means that almost half of us would have to go into debt or make significant sacrifices to get through even a small bump in the road.
For some people, solving this problem is as simple as cutting back on a few luxuries. While others are struggling just to keep their head above water and there just isn't any extra money at the end of the month. I want to be clear and recognize that some of us were born with privileges that make financial stability much more attainable than for other people - and that has nothing to do with how hard you work or how motivated you are. I don't pretend to know how to fix this on a national or systematic scale. I just hope that this website provides the right information, resources, or motivation to get a few more people to start an emergency fund.