Evidence type: Evaluation i
Information about the programme design and rationale
Evidence about Financial Capability outcomes for programme participants
Evidence that the Financial Capability outcomes were caused by the programme
Evidence about programme implementation, feasibility, and piloting
Evidence about relative costs and benefits of the programme
[This is an extract from the Executive Summary of the evaluation report. Further amendments may be made to this Summary, pending review by the Evidence Hub partner]
A cancer diagnosis is not limited to the physical and emotional effects of the illness and its treatment; fears of the impact of loss of income and personal costs have also been found to add to the burden of cancer (Stump et al., 2013). As such, effort should be made towards reducing financial concerns and their impacts by offering timely financial discussions as part of cancer patients’ early care (Tran & Zyfar, 2018). A strategy to improve financial capability has been implemented across the UK; working with financial services and debt advisors across various sectors to identify effective models of support for differing populations is central to this. This implies improving people’s ability to manage money well, both day to day and through significant life events, along with supporting their ability to handle periods of financial difficulty. The focus of the strategy and related funding is on developing people’s financial skills and knowledge, and improving their attitudes and motivation (Money Advice Service, 2018).
The Tenovus Cancer Care Money Advice Service (TMAS) aims to embed financial capability for people with cancer, on a low income or in financial difficulty, at an early stage in their diagnosis. TMAS is structured around delivering three one hour one-to-one sessions with clients; the focus of the planned sessions was derived from the Money Advice Service Adult Outcomes Framework and sought to address skills and knowledge, attitudes towards money, motivation to take action, and the accessibility of financial services, i.e., factors that influence people’s behaviour around money as per the MAS ethos. This may involve establishing a client’s numeracy skills; looking at basic money management skills, such as budgeting, income maximisation, and understanding of priority and non-priority debts; giving basic debt advice, and taking action where required (for example, referring clients to specialist debt advisors); and providing information about, and signposting/referring to, appropriate financial products and services, such as those provided by Credit Unions.
The research question guiding the evaluation of TMAS was:
The aim of the evaluation was to review the TMAS process around adoption and implementation and aimed to capture the wider experiences and impressions of clients and collaborators, as well as providers, relating to programme promotion, referral pathway, access, engagement, and delivery. The evaluation questions developed were:
Initial findings indicate that TMAS clients were grateful for the service and benefitted from the debt advice provided;