Email us at:

mail@ffpprobono.org

Training & Resources

The Foundation for Financial Planning supports the development of pro bono financial planning program models that can be replicated and scaled for greater impact. The resources below can help nonprofit organizations, financial planners, and others who want to develop, grow, or volunteer with programs in their communities.

The COVID-19 Resource Center includes Financial Resources for Individuals & Families, COVID-19 Legislation & Policies, Coronavirus Coverage in Advisory Profession Media, Trainings & Webinars, and Resources for Pro Bono Engagements. FFP is committed to providing pro bono financial planners, their clients, our grantees and partners with necessary tools and resources to help navigate the crisis as it relates to personal finance and pro bono financial planning.

Pro Bono Planner Match helps bring free, quality financial advice and planning to people in need by matching CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals with volunteer opportunities nationwide.

CFP®’s can register here and browse opportunities to volunteer. Nonprofits can register here to connect with CFP® volunteers who want to provide free, no-strings-attached financial planning and advice to underserved populations. Check out 5 steps Nonprofits Can Use to Get Started to learn more.

Training

The Pro Bono Financial Planning Volunteer Training is a free, 50-minute online module that helps financial planners understand the basics of how to provide pro bono service to underserved members of the community. The Pro Bono Financial Planning Volunteer Training is approved for one hour of continuing education (CE) credit by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards (CFP Board). After viewing the training in its entirety, volunteers must take and pass a self-assessment to receive their CE credit. *A version of the Pro Bono Financial Planning Volunteer Training specially geared to FPA members is also available on FPA’s site here.

The Pro Bono Financial Planning Volunteer Training is Presented by Capital Group.

Webinars

Using Financial Counseling Skills to Better Serve Pro Bono Clients: A CFP® professional can advise clients on complex financial matters such as financial planning, taxes, and retirement while an advisor with an AFC® designation focuses more on assisting clients with everyday financial challenges and spending habits. This webinar will explore the ways in which AFC-centric skills can complement the CFP® designation, especially in pro bono financial planning, where the advisor is serving low- and moderate- income clients.

Using Financial Empathy to Help All Clients Achieve Financial Well-being and Empowerment: Race, ethnicity, and gender play a significant role in how consumers interact with the financial services industry. This webinar explores financial well-being across a diverse set of identity groups and discusses the how financial planners can use financial empathy to empower individuals to improve their well-being. The webinar deck is available here.

Pro Bono Financial Planning During the COVID-19 Crisis: What Advisors and Clients Need to Know provides advisors with information relevant to pro bono service during COVID-19, including: an overview of the stimulus package; discussion of legislative provisions such as unemployment insurance, rent/mortgage, retirement accounts, taxes, and more;  and additional resources for pro bono advisors and their clients.

Public Benefits & Other Social Services: What Pro Bono Advisors Need to Know provides a comprehensive overview of public benefits and social services, including: detailed explanations of entitlement and welfare programs such as Social Security Disability Insurance and SNAP, eligibility criteria, and how to apply. The webinar deck is available here.

Since October 1st, 2020, FFP has provided Errors and Omissions (E&O) Insurance to pro bono financial planners. As long as you qualify, you are automatically covered by this policy at no cost to you!

To qualify for the FFP coverage, you must:

  • Be a Certified Financial Planner in good standing with the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards; and
  • Have successfully completed the “Pro Bono Volunteer Training” offered by FFP.

FFP’s policy will only cover claims that arise from your pro bono advisory services delivered:

For more information, click here.

The following tools and resources can help CFP®s engage in pro bono financial planning:

  • This Sample Pro Bono Financial Planning Policy can help corporations set policy and develop requirements for planners providing free services to individuals and families in need.
  • Sample Confidential Questionnaire: This questionnaire can be filled out by the client in preparation for a one-on-one session. Volunteer financial planners may also use it during the session to collect information about the client.
  • Articles on cultural competence: Phuong Luong, CFP®, discusses how it contributes to successful pro bono engagements, and Rianka R. Dorsainvil, CFP®, touches on the importance of education on the African-American experience in order to better serve and support African-American clients.
  • Planning for Good: Using your Financial Planning Expertise to Help Your Community: This deck and accompanying pdf provides information for financial planners seeking to use their financial planning expertise to help their community with topics such as choosing a volunteer opportunity, understanding community based organizations and the needs of clients, planning the work, and evaluation and monitoring.
  • Resources by Population Served: Here you’ll find resources focused on a specific population, like military/veterans, people affected by serious illness, or domestic violence survivors.

These disclosures can also serve as important tools in a pro bono engagements:

  • Sample Pro Bono Financial Planning Engagement Letter: Used to define the terms and objectives of the relationship as well as the limitations of service. FFP recommends that the Letter of Engagement be signed by the financial planner and the client, with a copy retained by each, and if feasible by the nonprofit host of the program.
  • Sample Verbal Disclosure: If it is not possible to use a written Letter of Engagement due to the nature of service delivery (for example, if there is only a brief, one-time consultation using video conference or telephone), FFP has developed a Sample Verbal Disclosure for the planner to share with the client verbally. Note however that the abridged version is not as protective as the Letter of Engagement, and does not include a Privacy Policy, a requirement per the CFP Board’s Standards of Ethics and Conduct when a CFP professional is providing financial planning or advice.
  • Sample Privacy Policy: If needed by the volunteer, FFP has also developed a customizable Privacy Policy.

This deck provides additional information about many key aspects of building a pro bono financial planning program, from promoting the program to potential clients to recruiting and training pro bono financial planners. Other tools and resources, several developed by nonprofit grantees of FFP, include:

  • This brief and webinar by the Asset Funders Networks provides recommendations for improving client engagement and retention in financial capability programs.
  • Sample Financial Habits Survey: This survey, developed by Britepaths, can be taken by clients prior to and post- financial planning sessions as a part of a nonprofit’s performance measurement process.
  • Sample Volunteer Resource Manual: This manual, developed by Goodwill of Lane and South Counties, was developed to give volunteers access to information that will support its Prosperity Center It contains information about community resources including childcare, housing, food, health insurance, career counseling, vehicle purchase, education, and more.
  • GreenPath Financial Wellness worked with the Foundation for Financial Planning to explore sustainable ways to move people with low- to-moderate incomes up the hierarchy of financial wellness. This report summarizes the findings of our efforts to understand barriers and gain insights into how to best help people improve their finances.
  • Resources by Population Served: Here you’ll find resources focused on a specific population, like military/veterans, people affected by serious illness, or domestic violence survivors.

These disclosures can also serve as important tools in a pro bono engagements:

  • Sample Pro Bono Financial Planning Engagement Letter: Used to define the terms and objectives of the relationship as well as the limitations of service. FFP recommends that the Letter of Engagement be signed by the financial planner and the client, with a copy retained by each, and if feasible by the nonprofit host of the program.
  • Sample Verbal Disclosure: If it is not possible to use a written Letter of Engagement due to the nature of service delivery (for example, if there is only a brief, one-time consultation using video conference or telephone), FFP has developed a Sample Verbal Disclosure for the planner to share with the client verbally. Note however that the abridged version is not as protective as the Letter of Engagement, and does not include a Privacy Policy, a requirement per the CFP Board’s Standards of Ethics and Conduct when a CFP professional is providing financial planning or advice.
  • Sample Privacy Policy: If needed by the volunteer, FFP has also developed a customizable Privacy Policy.

WORKBOOKS

WORKSHEETS

Financial Planning Event-in-a-Box: This toolkit (including an overview document and sample templates/documents) has been developed to help financial planning groups, nonprofits and others organize, promote, and execute events that offer a combination of educational sessions and free one-on-one advice from CFP® professionals to at-risk people from the community. The resource includes general instructions, guidelines, sample documents, and templates for implementing the event.

Apple Seed Program: Developed under an FFP grant, members of Texas Tech University’s Department of Personal Financial Planning created this curriculum and program model as a framework for students in Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board) registered programs and CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals to use in efforts to shape practicums and clinics that can serve students and underserved people from the community.

CFPB Bulk Publications and other Practitioner Resources: The mission of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is to make markets for consumer financial products and services work for consumers by making rules more effective, by consistently and fairly enforcing those rules, and by empowering consumers to take more control over their economic lives. Nonprofits and pro bono financial planners can use these publications and resources to help the people they serve increase their understanding of key areas such as credit, saving, debt, retirement, and more.