What is the Money Mentor Program?

Sponsored by University of Illinois Extension, the Money Mentors program is a network of trained volunteers who work one-on-one with individuals who request help with personal money management.

Money Mentors are available to meet with participants online or by phone.

Money Mentors are available to assist individuals with personal finance strategies, including:

  • Budgeting
  • Establishing Financial Goals
  • Building Savings
  • Managing Credit
  • Organizing Finances

As a participant, you can meet one time (for example, if you have a few questions about money management) or you can commit to meeting via phone or a virtual communication mode at least once a month over a four month period. After four months of mentoring you can decide if you'd like to continue meeting with your mentor. 

The goal for each meeting is to determine the most important steps a mentee can make to move towards her or his financial goals. Money Mentor volunteers are trained in problem-solving and financial coaching strategies to help participants move forward.

There is no cost to meet one-on-one with a Money Mentor. To be paired with a Money Mentor please click on the Mentee Participant Enrollment Form and fill out the form completely.

What do Money Mentors volunteers do?

Money Mentors volunteers build financial capacity in our local communities by providing financial education and coaching to individuals. Mentoring consists of working one-on-one with people who have asked for help with their personal finances and doing community outreach through displays, community talks, and other projects.

What qualifications do I need to become a Money Mentor?

Anyone can become a Money Mentor volunteer--it does not require a degree in financial planning! You do, however, need to:

  • Be over the age of 18
  • Have good communication and interpersonal skills
  • Possess the ability to work with individuals in a respectful and nonjudgmental manner
  • Maintain participant confidentiality and trust
  • Have access to email, telephone and transportation
  • Devote time to attend all training sessions and volunteer commitments
  • Commit to following University of Illinois Extension's research-based financial education strategies and recommendations

What is required to become a Money Mentor?

Training Commitments

Money Mentors volunteers receive approximately 30 hours of training in money management, financial mentoring, and community resources. Some home study is required. Opportunities are provided during training to apply financial knowledge to case examples and to practice mentoring skills. An application, interview, and background check are required before being accepted as a mentor.

Volunteer Commitments 

Following the training, each volunteer agrees to complete 30 volunteer hours annually in financial mentoring and community outreach. During the year, 12 hours of continuing education is also expected. Money Mentors meet monthly for continuing training as well as planning projects.

Is there a cost to become a Money Mentor?

A one-time $40 fee helps cover training and material costs. Partial scholarships are available if needed.

Our next training starts Fall 2021. Please mail Sasha Grabenstetter at swhitley@illinois.edu for any questions. 

Interested in becoming a Money Mentor volunteer?

Thank you for your interest in the Money Mentors volunteer program. Please email, educator, Sasha Grabenstetter at swhitley@illinois.edu to let her know of your interest.

Wanting to meet with a Money Mentor about your personal finances? You can! For free! 

Please fill out the registration form and someone will be emailing you shortly to get a meeting started.