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. We offer these models to nonprofit organizations, financial planners, and others who want to develop or grow 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.
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.
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:
- through a nonprofit organization that has received a grant from FFP; or
- through a nonprofit organization you connected with via FFP’s Pro Bono Planner Match, our digital platform for matching CFP volunteers with FFP-approved nonprofits.
For more information, click here.
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, we have developed a COVID-19 & Pro Bono Planning Resource Center for advisors and their pro bono clients, including information on provisions in emergency legislation that can help individuals and ways that advisors can assist different groups.
This deck and accompanying pdf, “Planning for Good: Using your Financial Planning Expertise to Help Your Community,” 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.
Phuong Luong, CFP®, discusses the important role of cultural competency for successful pro bono engagements. (Article accessible with free Morningstar membership.)
Other resources for planners include:
- Samples of worksheets for use during one-on-one engagements:
- 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 Client / Planner Letter of Engagement: A letter of engagement, which must be signed by the financial planner and the client, is an important tool in a pro bono relationship. The Foundation for Financial Planning provides a letter of engagement for pro bono financial planners. The Financial Planning Association also provides a letter of engagement for FPA members that engage in pro bono financial planning.
- 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.
- 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.
On Pro Bono Planner Match, nonprofits can connect with Certified Financial Planners™ who want to provide free, no-strings-attached financial planning and advice to underserved populations. If your nonprofit does not currently recruit pro bono financial planners, please check out 5 steps Nonprofits Can Use to Get Started engaging volunteer financial advisors to help your constituents.
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.
See below for other tools, several developed by nonprofit grantees of FFP, that can help nonprofits more effectively, and consistently, serve their clients. These include:
- Sample Volunteer Agreement Disclaimer: This disclaimer, developed by the Foundation for Financial Planning, ensures that pro bono financial planners and nonprofit organizations agree to a set of terms as they engage with one another.
- 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.
- Secure your Financial Future: Building Wealth is a personal finance education resource that presents an overview of wealth-building strategies for consumers, community leaders, teachers and students.
- GreenPath 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.
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.