9 Sep 2020
Helping thos in needs to transform their lives
Tim Meggitt - PSK Senior Financial Adviser
This year has been challenging for many Australians, particularly for those suffering financial hardship resulting from a personal health crisis or the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on our economy.
In many instances, people faced with health challenges are having to make important financial decisions at an extremely emotional time. Now more than ever, as those economic and financial effects impact increasing numbers of Australians, the support of financial advisers can play an invaluable role in helping people navigate the challenges of 2020 and improve the course of many people’s lives.
Unfortunately not everyone has the same access to financial advice, which is why the Pro Bono Financial Advice Network (PFAN) was formed – helping connect advisers willing to provide
pro-bono financial advice to those experiencing financial hardship triggered by a personal health crisis.
PFAN is an industry wide collaboration, and the organisation works with local communities and
associations to offer financial support to those who need it most. The Network has a particularly strong partnership with Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Australia, supporting MS sufferers and their families with financial guidance as they work through their diagnosis and subsequent health journey.
To give but one example of the meaningful difference PFAN can make, a single 63-year-old mum suffering with MS was worried she would lose her Centrelink Pension - her only source of income. Through PFAN, an adviser was able to prepare an advice document, so she was able to receive a higher level of income, invest her funds to maximise her superannuation contributions, and assist her son with purchasing a property.
It’s important work, but PFAN support also goes beyond providing people with a no-cost service to plan ahead; the true value lies in helping disadvantaged members of the community access financial advice in general. The program is an opportunity for advisers to help people suffering from a health or disability issue to take control of one important aspect of their lives – their finances.
My work with Wayside Chapel also continues and have helped develop in the last few months
Protected Trusts, Centrelink assistance and also finding of a home. Hugely rewarding work.
Not only does participating in the PFAN program leave advisers feeling a sense of fulfilment through positively impacting the lives of MS sufferers and their families, it also reinforces the value that advisers deliver to the community. With more advisers supporting PFAN, local awareness and appreciation for the value of the guidance that financial advisers provide rises too.
Advisers have a strong platform to make a positive impact on the lives of those who need help but aren’t able to access or afford it. They can play a big part in helping those people to build confidence in their own financial decision-making.
Whether it be a quick discussion, some simple information or in-depth financial advice, advisers’ support is needed for the individuals and communities impacted by both health complications and financial hardship. The personal and professional benefits of providing pro bono financial advice are endless, and, for me personally, I feel lucky to have been involved with PFAN over the past few years as a founding board member.
It’s incredibly rewarding to see over 150 advisers put their hand up to volunteer and provide their services to help those less fortunate in times of need.
As always, if you have any questions, please get in touch with Tim Meggitt on 02 9324 8888 or firstname.lastname@example.org
PSK Financial Services Group Pty Ltd (ABN 24 134 987 205) are Authorised Representatives of Charter Financial Planning Ltd (AFSL 234666), Australian Financial services Licensee and Australian Credit Licensee. Information contained in this article is general in nature. It does not take into account your objectives, needs or financial situation. You need to consider your financial situation before making any decisions based on this information.