CBA Commits $900,000 to Support Financial Counselling

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18/05/2017

Commonwealth Bank has joined forces with Financial Counselling Australia (FCA) to enhance the skills of financial counsellors in identifying and understanding the impact of economic abuse in domestic and family violence.

FCA announced this week at its national conference that Commonwealth Bank will provide $400,000 to train financial counsellors across Australia to assist people affected by domestic and family violence. Commonwealth Bank has also pledged $500,000 to the Jan Pentland Foundation to fund 10 scholarships annually for the next 10 years for people to study financial counselling.

Commonwealth Bank Group Executive of Retail Banking Services, Matt Comyn, said: "Commonwealth Bank is committed to ending domestic and family violence in a generation. While we have a significant role to play, we can't do it alone. Since 2015, we have undertaken wide industry and community consultation to better understand how financial abuse contributes to domestic and family violence. This consultation led us to develop an approach focused on responding to customers in crisis and promoting the financial independence of women."

"We have introduced domestic and family violence trainings and toolkits for our employees, and we have enhanced systems to help customers in crisis. We also recognise the invaluable of financial counsellors in providing frontline support. Our work with FCA and support of this important initiative will strengthen counsellor skills, which in turn will make an important contribution to the prevention of, and response to, domestic and family violence," Mr Comyn said.

Fiona Guthrie, CEO of Financial Counselling Australia, said: "Helping clients affected by domestic and family violence requires specific skills and knowledge. This funding means we can provide practical, face-to-face training to financial counsellors in cities, and in rural and remote areas.We have never been able to do anything of this nature before, so this is truly ground-breaking."

"The cost of studying to become a financial counsellors can be a barrier for many people, so the funding to the Jan Pentland Foundation will create a new generation of financial counsellors. We look forward to working with Commonwealth Bank to keep improving the way we help the most vulnerable people in society. Ending domestic and family violence is a shared goal, and our collaboration will make a meaningful difference."

Media contacts:
Commonwealth Bank Media
02 9118 6919
media@cba.com.au

Fiona Guthrie
Financial Counselling Australia
0402 426 835

About the Jan Pentland Foundation
The Jan Pentland Foundation was established to commemorate the contribution of financial counselling champion Jan Pentland and provides scholarships to cover the training costs of new financial counsellors. Based on current costs, the donation will help fund up to 10 scholarships per year over the next 10 years.