Kat managed to get a new job in business development quickly but decided to keep her other jobs
A woman is working five jobs to save up a “comfort blanket” for emergencies – after a shock redundancy left her scraping for cash.
Kat Gallagher, 25, had a “comfortable” life with boyfriend Josh Caldwell, 24, when she was made redundant in September 2023.
Panicked and strapped for cash, Kat immediately started searching for jobs and picked up shifts in her two local pubs and restaurant in the meantime.
She managed to get a new job in business development within two weeks but decided to continue to juggle her other work to build her savings.
Now she works a nine-to-five job, a front of house assistant role on the weekend, and picks up shifts in her local pubs or restaurant two nights a week – averaging out at 70 hours a week.
Kat, from Belfast, Ireland, said: “All of a sudden I had all these jobs.
“I decided to keep this up to create a comfort blanket.
“I want to get to a point where it doesn’t matter what happens – the money is there if there’s an emergency.”
Kat started a new job in business development in July 2023 but was shocked when the company went into administration and she was left jobless in September.
Kat has decided to keep up the jobs until she has enough money saved up if anything similar happens
She said: “I was shell-shocked.
“At that time I didn’t have any surplus cash.”
Kat and Josh, a trainee account, had just bough a flat and used their savings on their deposit and furnishings.
Kat sprang into action and took a job back at the pub she worked in after university, as well as another local pub and restaurant.
She also took on a job as a front of house assistant before securing a full-time role within two weeks of being unemployed.
Kat said: “We had to borrow £500 from family for bills and rent and wanted to pay that back.
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“If something like that happens again I didn’t want to be in that same stressful position.”
Kat now works 70 hours a week – 45 in her salaried job, 16 in her founder price assistant role, and two shifts between the two pubs.
On a busy week she works up to 85 hours.
She said: “My Saturday often starts at 7am. I go to my front of house job from 8am to 6pm and then I’ll work 8pm until 2am in the pub.
“If I have a day off I look at it as time to pick up a shift.”
Kat’s boyfriend, Josh, also picks up delivery shifts when he can alongside his studying and full-time job.
“I never feel rested,” Kat admits
Kat’s extra jobs means she can double her income – and brings in nearly £3,000 a month which she has so far used to pay back debts.
The couple spend £1,300 a month on rent and bills and hope the extra work will now give them some savings for the future or for emergencies.
Kat said: “I’m finding myself really tired.
“The biggest thing that suffers is I don’t have a social life.
“Everything has to be scheduled.”
Kat said Josh is “stepping up to the plate” – doing all the cooking, and dropping her off for shifts.
She said: “If I compare how we were living to the last three months – we were going to concerts, dinners, holidays. That has had to go.
“We don’t really have quality time.”
Kat has decided to keep up the jobs until she has enough money saved up if anything similar happens again – and she needs extra cash.
She hopes she can take on less shifts in the New Year.
Kat said: “I never feel rested.
“I never feel like I’ve had enough sleep.
“I wouldn’t recommend this as a solution.
“But it’s a quick way to save.”
Kat said the situation she was put in could happen to anyone – and she is thankful for the support of her family, friends and community.
She said: “I have lived comfortably. For it to happen when you’re already cutting costs, it was bad timing.
“It’s hard lesson to learn.
“It’s shown Josh and I can get through anything.”