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Reaching out to Communities of Color

In partnership with BNY Mellon’s Pershing, FFP is proud to expand our support of pro bono financial guidance programs in communities of color, helping connect more Black and Brown families to Certified Financial Planner® professionals during a time of economic uncertainty.

Read the full announcement here.

The fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has had a disproportionate impact on people of color, leaving many families facing financial catastrophe and nowhere to turn for quality advice.

  • Black people are five times more likely to be hospitalized with the virus than White people, according to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), resulting in a widespread loss of household income among this group.
  • According to data from the Federal Reserve, White families own 83.9% of the nation’s household wealth, compared to 4.1% owned by Black families and 2.5% owned by Hispanic families – a breakdown that has hardly changed in 30 years.
  • Lower loan approval rates, lower homeownership rates, lower personal wealth, and higher interest rates are just a few of the lasting effects of decades of financial discrimination against Black families.
  • Black mortgage loan applicants are turned away at significantly higher rates than White applicants – in fact, the national homeownership rate for Black families is 44%, compared to 73.7% for White families. As Black Americans continue to face mortgage market discrimination, they rely heavily on consumer debt, and are consistently charged higher interest rates than White Americans.

How We Are Helping

Thanks to support from Pershing, FFP is expanding its grant pool for 2021, 2022 and 2023, offering 3-4 designated grants annually to organizations serving primarily people of color. These grants will support a range of programs that deliver quality financial advice and planning to underserved families, providing them guidance on debt management, budgeting, education planning, homebuying, retirement and more, and helping them achieve a more stable financial future.

“Communities of color have traditionally been limited to access in a number of areas, from education to recruiting to advancement, and more. This initiative is in line with our commitment to continually leverage the company’s resources to increase the impact of community support for underrepresented populations. Initiatives that actively help bridge a gap will make a difference, and serve to empower our communities of color.”

– Tonia Bottoms, Managing Director, Senior Managing Counsel and Diversity Advocate for BNY Mellon’s Pershing

2022 Communities of Color Grantees

Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation

Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation (Brooklyn, NY) aspires to close gaps in family and community wealth to ensure all families in Central Brooklyn are prosperous and healthy – a mission facing more headwinds than ever amid the COVID-19 crisis. 89% of Restoration’s clients are people of color, with 67% from the Black community. The families Restoration serves have experienced an outsized impact from the pandemic, with many of them struggling to navigate the loss of income and increased medical and childcare expenses. With a grant from FFP, Restoration will augment its current financial counseling program to provide clients with guidance from CFP® professionals in the areas of debt management, budgeting, savings, education planning, retirement planning and more.


Britepaths (Fairfax, VA) is dedicated to addressing the unique needs of those living in poverty or experiencing crisis, serving more than 7,000 households in Fairfax County, VA, with 94% of Britepaths’ clients living at or below 200% of the poverty level. Close to 80% of Britepaths’ clients are people of color. With a grant from FFP, Britepaths will engage CFP® professionals in providing financial advice and guidance to low- to moderate- income families via its Financial Counseling Clinics and Financial Empowerment Center, with a goal to help clients become more financially stable and self-sufficient.

Caroline Friess Center, Inc.

Caroline Friess Center, Inc. (Baltimore, MD), a work program supported by the School Sisters of Notre Dame (SSND), trains passionate, goal-oriented women for careers in healthcare. With 95% of their clients from the Black community, the Center’s goal is to empower underserved women with the confidence and aptitude needed for both personal and professional successes, leveraging a suite of support services and a holistic curriculum that includes training in “essential skills” like financial capability. With a grant from FFP, the Center will boost its existing financial education curriculum with one-on-one opportunities for its trainees to meet with volunteer CFP® professionals. These women can sign up to receive individual guidance on a range of topics, including debt management, budgeting, retirement, and more.

The Communities of Color Initiative is presented by