How a Turkish family of eight manages soaring food costs | Business and Economy

What’s your money worth? A series from the front line of the cost-of-living crisis, where people who have been hit hard share their monthly expenses.

Name: Latife Bayram

Age: 38

Occupation: Homemaker and caregiver

Lives with: Her husband, Akif (47); two sons, Alperen (21) and Yusuf (10); two daughters, Bediha (17) and Esma (7); mother-in-law, Ikbal (86); and sister-in-law Mesude (52), who has an intellectual disability.

Lives in: A 90-square-metre, three-bedroom flat in the district of Mamak on the outskirts of the Turkish capital, Ankara. The four children share one bedroom with two bunk beds; grandmother Ikbal and aunt Mesude share a tiny room; and Latife and Akif occupy the main bedroom. The family owns their flat, which they bought for 66,000 Turkish lira in 2009, which was equivalent to roughly $42,150 at the time.

Total monthly income: 29,800 lira ($1,527). This includes Akif’s salary from a job as a shoe factory worker (12,000 lira, or $615) and a pension he receives from a previous job (7,500 lira, or $384) as well as Ikbal’s pension (4,100 lira, or $210). Additionally, Latife receives an allowance of 4,200 lira ($215) from the government because she is the registered caregiver for Mesude, who cannot live independently. This month, Latife made an extra 2,000 lira ($102) sewing shoes at home in the evenings.

Total expenses for the month: 38,300 lira ($1,962). For the Bayram family, April 2023 – most of which coincided with the Muslim month of Ramadan and the Eid-al Fitr festivities – was a month in which they made a large charitable donation and had some irregular expenses, for which they used credit cards.

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