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What Is the Cost of Raising a Child in the UK in 2017?

To put it bluntly, it takes over £230,000 in average to raise a child until the age of 21 in the UK. This number is 63% higher than what it was in 2003. This should make you pause for a while and think if parenting is really for you considering the amount you need to spend for it.

To make it even more difficult, 1 in 5 mothers have returned to work right after giving birth so they can provide for the needs of their babies. Even if both parents are working, it would take around 30% of their gross annual income to provide for the needs of the child. Forty-four percent of all parents have to cut back on other expenses and make certain sacrifices just to make ends meet.

The picture is pretty clear by now. Raising a child in the UK in recent year has not been easy. If anything, it will continue to be more expensive as the cost of living goes higher and demands increase over time.

Where does the money go?

You might wonder why it costs a lot to raise a child. According to studies, most of the expenses go to surging childcare fees. This includes health care and education. These two items on the list eat up most of the income earned by the parents. In the UK, the cost of these two expenses alone has gone 50% faster than the country’s inflation rate in over a decade.

In fact, the cost has become too high that parents even have to make sacrifices on certain items. For instance, more parents spend less on toys so they can provide for more important and basic needs. They even sacrifice their budget for food at home due to the rising costs.

The negative effects

Due to the stunning cost of raising a child in the UK, several parents have second thoughts on having a second child. Recently married couples even had to postpone their plans of having kids up until they feel like they are more financially stable. Seeing mothers go back to work right away is a sad thing.

Although the UK has better maternity leave policies than many other major countries, it is still not enough. Mothers still have to go back to work right away in fear of losing their job. Others have to take extra jobs just to meet the demands of a growing family. Each year, the cost of raising a child increases by about £2,000. It is twice the country’s inflation rate.

Parents who have decided to get babysitters have to spend an average of almost £70,000 per child based on the current rates. As some of them earn more if they go back to work, they would rather hire someone to babysit. In more affluent parts of London, this amount goes even blow up to over £80,000.

The other expenses

Although education and health care make up a significant portion of the overall cost in raising a child, there are a lot more on the list. This includes clothing, toys, holidays, furniture and others such as birthday parties and recreation. For parents who could not afford the increasing cost, other parts of the budget have to be removed.

According to studies, the first four years of a child’s life is the most expensive. It is also the years that require utmost attention. During these years, children need more frequent trips to the doctors. They also need intensive care from a babysitter. There are also a lot of baby products necessary to address their needs.

This includes milk, diapers, strollers, baby carriers, chairs, monitors and many others. The good thing is that there are stores providing all these basic needs at an affordable cost. Some of them can even be bought online. Therefore, parents no longer have to spend a lot of time at the stores. Online stores like BabyGearGuide can provide these needs.

Hopeful parents

Despite the fact that raising a child costs a lot, more parents are still hopeful that they can have their own family in the future. They start saving money so that there won’t be a need to postpone plans of becoming parents. A lot of British people are aware of this reality and they are becoming more prepared to face it.

Also read: Increasing Awareness of Recycling in the UK

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Increasing Awareness of Recycling in the UK

In 2015, recycling rates in the UK have seen a slight drop. The UK is one of the most progressive nations on Earth when it comes to recycling. Hence, after seeing figures dropping from 44.8% to 43.9%, calls to action started immediately.

Although it was a slight drop, it is still considered an embarrassment among the British people. This is true especially since they consider themselves one of the leaders in this industry.  The UK has also set a target of recycling at least 50% of its household waste by 2020. This drop in the recycling rate will most likely let the UK miss the target.

Immediate changes

Since this report came out, changes were made immediately. Campaign efforts to promote recycling were intensified. Both governmental agencies and non-government organisations launched more efforts to make more people aware of recycling and the benefits they can get from doing it.

The problem with the idea of recycling for some people is not that they don’t want to do it. They just don’t know what can be recycled and how to do it. This must go back to awareness drive first. This is why newer campaigns are more targeted. Instead of simply telling people to recycle, the goal is to give them better information about recycling, so they can easily do it at home.

There is confusion

According to surveys, there is still a huge percentage of British families that are confused on what to place in the recycling bin. In as much as they want to take part in the effort, they don’t have enough knowledge to do so.

The good thing is that with the efforts to provide more information to the people, figures became better. It was revealed that in 2016, the items thrown by people have significantly dropped in terms of the overall weight. This only means that a lot of households have decided to recycle some of the items they have instead of throwing them away.

Commonly recycled items

There are a lot of items that can be recycled even if they seem to fit in the garbage. Paper is one of them. You can shred and sell these papers. There are shops willing to buy them per kilogramme so they can have the paper recycled.

Old batteries and other old electronic devices may also be recycled. They are considered hazardous waste. They are not supposed to be thrown away. There are electronic companies that would like to buy them. These items still contain something useful. The old parts may be used in creating new devices.

Finally, you can sell old mattresses. If you want a mattress that is best for back pain, go ahead and get one. Just don’t throw the old one away. There are people who are willing to buy this old mattress for a reasonable cost.

If you can identify the items that can still be recycled, you can contribute in increasing the recycling rate in the UK. There is still a chance to achieve its recycling goals in the future.

Also see: How Bad a Problem is Deforestation Really?

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Why you should stop your disposable razor habit now to save the environment?

How many times do you have to throw away a disposable razor and buy a new one? Some people would even have tons of them inside the cabinet. As the term implies, they are disposable unlike an electric shaver. Once they have been used, they can’t be used again. As a result, in the Unites States alone, there are almost 2 billion razors thrown out each year. Imagine the number of razors thrown out all over the world considering that a majority of the male population shave. Women shave too.

What happens after throwing them?

The sad part is that once they are thrown away, they end up on landfills. They don’t decompose. Sometimes, they are carried away into the ocean. There were even cases in which bellies of marine animals were opened wide just to find these razors inside. Some of these marine animals even make their way to our dining table. At that point, the danger is totally real. There are even some landfills that are already used up to a point where there’s no choice but to burn things up. As razors are usually made from plastic or metal, they will definitely do a huge deal of damage to the atmosphere. We have already done a lot to cause global warming; we can’t afford to do more by burning billions of razors each year. We will be the one bearing the brunt eventually if we don’t do anything to change things now.

It’s time to change

These are just some of the reasons why you have to stop using disposable razors. They will just end up polluting the environment. There are other options available to make you stop using disposable razors. For instance, you can use recyclable razors. They can be used several times, although there will come a point when you have to throw the blade away.

The better option would be an electronic razor. With this type of shaver, you simply have to plug it in and you’re good to go. You can easily clean it up too. You can use it as often as you want and you won’t have to throw anything away. You can also use this shaver for various bodily hairs. Again, it is easy to clean them up so it won’t be a big problem.

If electric shavers fail to work, then there could be some parts that are not working. You can easily replace these parts and the shaver will start working again. You also have nothing to worry when it comes to electric consumption. Electric shavers consume very minimal energy. This won’t result to the skyrocketing of your monthly electric bills. It might seem awkward using it at first, but eventually you will get the hang of it. When it happens, you can easily use the shaver. You can also pack it with you if you travel.

Don’t feel guilty

With the use of an electronic shaver, you will no longer feel guilty the next time you shave. You know that the razor is kept with you and it can be used over and over again. You will also not worry about the cost. Yes, electric razors are more expensive than regular disposable razors. However, if you have to keep throwing them away and replace them with something new, you will end up spending more.

To top it all, you will feel good that you are helping the environment. You know that in your own ways, you can change the status quo. It might not be enough to have an impact, but if you can influence others to do the same, then the impact can be felt. We don’t expect this problem to be solved any time soon. Everything starts with awareness. Then, it will keep getting bigger up until everyone is used to the idea of using electric shavers instead of disposable shaver.

It might even inspire you to take other measures to help save the environment. Now that you understand the gravity of the problem, you will start using recyclable materials instead of throwing them away. Eventually, it will become natural. You will find it in you to just keep on recycling because you know how great the impact is if you do otherwise.

Also read: Which Kind of Stove is Best for the Environment?

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