Family of six survives on pounds 137 a week
Monday 29 March 1999
The family survive on pounds 273 a fortnight made up of joint income support and disability benefit. His father gave up his job as a packer three and a half years ago after a back injury from playing cricket. His mother has never worked.
Chris said that although he knew education was important to get a good job he found school difficult.
"I should work harder but I have trouble with my spelling and words so it is hard for me," he said.
Chris wants to be a motor racing driver when he grows up, a career that does not require many formal qualifications. "It would be good money and I would get to drive fast cars and travel the world." From an early age he has been aware of the limited family resources and does not ask for expensive presents. For his birthday in December he asked for what he thought was a cheap replica gun.
"I didn't get it. It was pounds 25 which I thought was quite cheap," said Chris. "I was not too worried. I'll save up and get it myself," he said.
Chris does not get any pocket money and does not have a part-time job because he is too young.
His expectations for the future are not high. "I know I am not going to get a brilliant job when I am older but I would be happy just as long as I just had enough to eat, " he said.
His future aspirations are similar to those of 14-year-old James, who lives in Teesside with his mother Dawn, and younger brother Michael.
James believes that being a doctor or a lawyer is out of his reach. "They are jobs which posh people do. You have to go to university or college and I don't want to do that. I want to be an apprentice when I leave school at 16 and learn a trade that way." James wants to be an electrician or welder. He doesn't have a part-time job, or any pocket money, although his grandad gives him couple of pounds every fortnight.
- 1 Kim Jong-un shows off airport designed by architect he likely had executed
- 2 Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
- 3 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 4 Fifty Shades of Grey author E.L James's Twitter Q&A didn't go exactly as planned
- 5 Facebook rainbow profile pictures likely being tracked by social network
Kim Jong-un shows off airport designed by architect he likely had executed
Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
Ex-Scientologist Carmen Llwyelyn blasts 'cult' and her treatment after divorce with Jason Lee
German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
Tunisia attack: 'Paralysed' police let gunman run amok for half an hour, says witness
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Pentagon accuses Russia of 'playing with fire' over nuclear threats towards Nato
They are neither a 'state' nor 'Islamic': Why we shouldn't call them Isis, Isil or IS
Tunisia beach attack: How can British Muslims respond to the latest outrages?
£18000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity has ari...
£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An On-line Sales & Customer Ser...
£15000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the largest hospitality companies...
£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: As a result of significant cont...