AV is Victoria’s largest financial counselling provider in the state, with 40 financial counsellors working to improve the financial situation and education of more than 3500 people. During the first six months of 2022, the rising cost of essentials became a constant source of concern. The price of rent, petrol, groceries, fresh produce, heating and cooling – not to mention school fees and birthday presents – meant high demand for Anglicare Victoria’s financial counsellors. Financial counsellors work with families and individuals to understand their financial challenges and find solutions. They also advocate for clients to help repay debts, work with utility companies and dig their way out of financial hardship.
“I can’t express how mentally, emotionally and financially tough the last couple of years have been. Just knowing you are there has meant so much. Really. Thank you so much. I wouldn’t have been able to have financial conversations with the creditor and deal with everything else in my life without breaking.” –Amy*, financial counselling client
“This has literally given me a fresh start to life. And now I have tools to navigate the future with confidence.” – Will*, financial counselling client
WORKING TO EASE THE PRESSURE
The extra stress of financial hardship makes achieving personal goals difficult, particularly for people with complex needs such as mental health challenges, drug and alcohol use, or are victims of family violence. When our financial counsellors can successfully work with families to resolve money issues, they are empowered to move forward in all areas of their lives.
BUDGETING THE BASICS
Our staff work to create a simple and effective budget with their clients which allows them to manage their money better and set financial goals. The aim is to give control back to people over their spending so they make essential purchases, pay off their debts and start contributing to their savings.
A WAY BACK FROM CRUSHING DEBT
Our financial counselling team supported thousands of clients crippled by debt to regain their lives this year. This often means advocating for our clients and negotiating with utility providers, debt collectors and banks for an outcome that is manageable for the individual financially.
FINANCIAL EDUCATION IN SCHOOLS
In AV’s eastern metro region, additional philanthropic funding enabled AV financial capability workers to visit schools to teach young people about finances and financial wellbeing.
ADVOCATING FOR A BETTER SYSTEM
Anglicare Victoria is a member of the Stop the Debt Trap coalition, which is working towards reform of payday lending and the regulation of Buy Now Pay Later services, which have grown substantially in recent years.
“This year, we’ve supported more people with complex and severe mental health challenges. There’s been a huge increase in people who otherwise would not be experiencing financial
hardship but were impacted by COVID, like small business owners and those unable to work from home. There is considerable financial strain on people right now.” – Stephanie Bortignon, Program Manager of Community Services, East Metro
The 2022 Annual report can be found on our website.
To request a hard copy of this report, call us on 1800 809 722.