Financial mentors provide invaluable support to individuals and whānau across Aotearoa New Zealand. Their services are free and confidential, offering essential assistance for managing financial challenges and improving financial wellbeing.
There are more than 800 financial mentors serving their communities from about 190 financial mentoring services.
Financial mentoring in New Zealand has a rich history that traces its roots back to the early 1960s. It began as a grassroots initiative led by passionate volunteers, emerging in response to the financial challenges brought about by the introduction of new credit products in the post-war era.
Over time, this small group of dedicated volunteers has grown into the vibrant sector it is today.
How it works
FinCap plays a crucial role in supporting financial mentoring services. We provide comprehensive financial mentoring training to develop skilled financial mentors. Among other offerings, we provide financial mentoring services with a free, bespoke client management system and advocate for system change to support the work financial mentors do to build financial capability in their communities.
Financial mentoring typically begins by addressing immediate financial needs, such as ensuring access to essential necessities like food, shelter, and electricity. This process starts with a thorough evaluation of an individual’s financial situation, followed by collaborative goal-setting and the development of tailored strategies to manage finances and reduce debt. Throughout this journey, financial mentors offer ongoing guidance and support.
The scope of their work can vary widely, ranging from a one-time session to address an urgent financial crisis to more in-depth and ongoing assistance. Financial mentors also advocate for clients by negotiating with creditors, resolving debts, assisting in disputes, guiding through insolvency procedures, and connecting to ethical lending options. These actions can significantly enhance a whanau’s financial well-being.
Additionally, some services may extend their reach by offering community education programmes to groups or providing specialised temporary or continuous Total Money Management services for those who struggle to manage their finances independently.