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Supporting Kiwis through these tough times

Ensuring vulnerable Kiwis are able to access Building Financial Capability (BFC) services at a time when they most need it.

Government is investing $25.2 million over the next two years to support BFC services to respond to the increasing needs of individuals, families and whānau for support as a result of the economic impacts of COVID-19.

In addition to existing pressures on services, a significant increase in demand for BFC services is expected as a result of the economic downturn from COVID-19. This will see increased levels of unemployment and loss of earnings. Households are expected to face sudden and significant financial hardship from living on a much-reduced income.

Why do we need to make changes?

The investment over two years recognises this period as being especially critical to ensure services are more sustainable as well as increasing the number of staff with the skills to meet the demand during this time.

We’re looking at opportunities to use this funding in a way that increases immediate support for service provision and also invests in long term workforce capability to ensure Kiwis accessing these important services get the best possible outcomes.

For more information

If you have any questions regarding these changes, please contact us by email at Financial_Capability@msd.govt.nz

FAQs

How long is the increased funding available for?

Answer: The funding is for two years (until June 2022) and is allocated across the two years as follows:

Costs (operating) $m

2020/21

2021/22

Total

11.402

13.810

25.212

What BFC services will be affected by the changes in funding rates?

Answer: The following services will have their funding rates updated:

  • Financial Mentoring – one-to-one support empowering people to achieve their goals, including reducing debt and connecting to support they may need.
  • MoneyMates–peer-led support for people to learn and share together as a group.
  • Building Financial Capability Plus (Kahukura) service – intensive support for people who are hard to reach or with complex needs.
  • Micro-finance services – affordable credit to people at risk of unsustainable debt and hardship.

When will the funding increases take effect?

Answer: Funding increases will be applied to your contract from October 2020. This will be in your contract variation letter. Increases will be backdated to 1 July 2020.

Why are we reporting on staff and training?

Answer: As part of the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund (CRRF) we need to show that the additional funding has achieved positive outcomes for people experiencing financial hardship. We also acknowledge that as a result of COVID-19 the complexities of the people accessing BFC services is changing. To support this, we are investing in the BFC workforce to help meet this challenge.

This staff and training information will give us a better understanding of what the current BFC workforce looks like and helps us better support BFC services.

What is the definition of professional development?

Answer: We define professional development as: Activities that improve and/or increase capabilities of staff through access to education and/or training opportunities.

Activities could be through outside organisations (such as FinCap) or through peer-to-peer observations/coaching in the workplace.

Is my reporting frequency changing due to the additional reporting measures?

Answer: No. Reporting frequency is not affected by the additional reporting measures. Your organisation will still report as per usual (whether that’s quarterly, twice yearly or yearly). Reporting frequency can change but is on a case-by-case basis and is a process managed by your contract manger.

How many hours per week makes up 1 FTE?

Answer: Stats New Zealand defines full-time as working 30 hours or more per week. Anything less than that is considered part-time.

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