"We know that under normal circumstances many people benefit from financial advice, so imagine how much of an impact a planner can make when someone is facing a financial stressor like a cancer diagnosis. We have an opportunity to truly help heal by offering pro bono financial advice." - FPA Member Suzette Rothberg, CFP®
Every day families that are battling cancer make dangerous decisions like skipping a chemotherapy appointment so they can afford to feed their families. They often suffer financial distress that adversely impacts their ability to complete treatment and decreases their chance of survival.
As a CFP® professional, you can empower these families, lending your skills and knowledge to help them manage their finances so they can focus on getting well.
The Financial Planning Association is recruiting pro bono financial planners for the Financial Planning for Cancer Program. Developed by FPA, the Foundation for Financial Planning (FFP) and Family Reach, this program provides cancer patients and caregivers financial planning and education that will mitigate the financial risks associated with treatment. The other nonprofit partnered in this effort is Consumer Education and Training Services (CENTS).
What is the expected commitment of volunteers?
To be a volunteer for the Financial Planning for Cancer Program, you will be expected to:
- Work with approximately three clients per year (you will receive client referrals from our nonprofit partners, Family Reach and/or CENTS).
- Engage with each client up to three times, including for example, one meeting for introductions and data gathering, one meeting for planning, and one meeting for checking in with the client – unless there are special circumstances beyond your control. Engagements can be done in-person, by phone or Skype/FaceTime.
- Spend a total of approximately 2 to 6 hours with each client, depending on the client’s needs. (Some clients may simply want advice on one or two matters and require less time.)
You can terminate your participation in the program at any time.
What is your role?
As a pro bono financial planner, you will advise and/or prepare a brief financial plan for each cancer patient and/or their caregiver. This process may entail:
- Creating and/or examining budget and balance sheets
- Troubleshooting and anticipating financial challenges
- Organizing their finances, tracking and reducing expenses, and managing debts
- Contemplating credit decisions and new uses of assets
- Examining life, long-term care or disability insurance questions
- Referring to appropriate resources and/or assistance that will be provided to you
- Completing and providing tools like worksheets and plan templates to clients
What will you gain?
- The knowledge that you are helping ease a serious burden for families facing a cancer diagnosis
- Specialized skills by working with a specific group of clients
- Expanded professional networks with fellow planners, nonprofit organizations and hospitals that help families with cancer
Specialized Volunteer Training
To prepare you to be a pro bono financial planner for cancer patients and/or their caregivers, you will need to complete two online trainings.
A one-hour online course that provides an overview of pro bono financial planning, and is accompanied by handouts, check-for-understanding questions, and a final exam to receive 1 CFP® CE credit. If you have already completed this training, you do not need to complete it again.
2) Financial Planning for Cancer E-Learning Training Module
A 45-minute training that provides an overview of the program, information about your volunteer role, tips on how to work with clients diagnosed with cancer and their caregivers, and resources to support your engagements with clients. You are eligible to receive 1 CFP® CE credit for completing this training module.