Rural Financial Counselling Service (RFCS)Overview
This program aims to provide free financial counselling services nationally to farmers, fishing enterprises and small, related businesses suffering financial hardship. It forms part of the government’s overall assistance measures for regional Australia, particularly those addressing drought and risk management.
The program delivers intensive, individualised support to each client without them having to pay. Rural financial counselling services assist and support clients to understand their financial position and adopt strategies to become financially self-sufficient. Rural financial counsellors can:
- Help identify financial and business options.
- Help negotiate with lenders.
- Help develop an action plan.
- Help support clients to access the Farm Household Allowance (FHA).
- Give information about government and other assistance schemes.
- Refer clients to accountants, agricultural advisers and educational services.
- Refer clients to Department of Human Services and to professionals for succession planning, family mediation and personal, emotional and social counselling.
There are 12 service providers across Australia that employ rural financial counsellors to assist clients in need. These regions are:
- Western Australia
- South Australia – Northern Territory
- Northern Queensland
- Southern Queensland
- Northern New South Wales
- Central New South Wales
- Southern New South Wales
- North-East Victoria
- Eastern Victoria
- Western Victoria
- North-West Victoria
Please refer to the website for the list of rural financial counsellor contacts for each region.
Eligible client groups include
- Fishing enterprises
- Forestry growers and harvesters
- Small related businesses
Rural financial counsellors do not provide family, emotional or social counselling or financial advice.