Financial Capability Month



Library offers free programs to help patrons boost their financial literacy during National Financial Capability Month, April 1–30

SAN FRANCISCO, March 13, 2023 - April is National Financial Capability Month, and San Francisco Public Library is getting in on the action by offering free programs to support patrons’ financial capability and future goals.

“Since the onset of COVID, the Library has doubled down on programs aimed at helping patrons improve their economic outcomes,” says Librarian Lia Hillman. “It’s been great to see these programs grow in popularity and change lives for the better. During Financial Capability Month we are offering a wide range of opportunities for residents to save better, invest smarter and plan for their future. We even have one-on-one financial coaching and a special workshop on property tax led by our very own Assessor-Recorder Joaquín Torres, and all for free!”

Starting on April 4, the Business, Science and Technology Department at the San Francisco Main Library in partnership with experts, provide presentations on a wide menu of topics, ranging from the basics on saving, financial planning and cash flow management, to investing, retirement planning, property tax and insurance sub-limits. There are also workshops on the psychology of spending and how to overcome procrastination. Most of the programs are virtual and can be accessed from the comfort of one’s own home or by accessing a computer for free at the Library.

In addition, the public can access financial literacy coaching weekdays through the Library’s partners at Smart Money Coaching and Advisors Give Back. Smart Money Coaching offers free, confidential, basic financial guidance for anyone living, working or receiving services in San Francisco regardless of citizenship status. Coaches are fluent in Spanish, Cantonese and Mandarin with additional translation services as requested. Coaching sessions are in-person or virtual.  

According to one patron, "I was at a low, personally and professionally because I was unemployed and had several debts and medical bills. [My Smart Money Coach] helped me explore employment options and identify areas for cutting back expenses. [What I valued most was] having a cheerleader/coach support me through the process and de-mystify money management."

New this year, the Library also partners with Advisors Give Back, a pro bono Certified Financial Planner®, to help patrons create a financial plan and achieve their goals—pay off debt sooner, figure out investing, plan for retirement, save for the future, boost emergency savings and more. This service is available to people who are single with no dependents or married, not earning more than $100,000/year and have less than $250,000 in total savings or who are single with dependents or married with dependents not earning more than $150,00/year and have less than $250,000 in total savings.

Financial Literacy Month Programs:
Additional information can be found at 

One-on-One Coaching
Patrons who are interested in meeting with a Smart Money Coach or Certified Financial Planner® can visit to find out more about setting up an appointment. 

Sustainable Investing That Benefits Nature and People Tuesday, April 4, 2023, 12:00 – 1:00 p.m., Virtual Program
Learn how to evaluate how to invest for your future, optimize taxes, and allocate to funds and firms that treat people and the environment better all at the same time.  HIP Investor's Chief Investment Officer and Lead Investment Advisor R. Paul Herman will explain the latest on sustainable investing approaches, available tax-deferral strategies, and how to position your portfolio to benefit people and planet while also seeking to reduce future risk and pursue positive returns.

Estate Planning Basics – Wednesday, April 5, 2023, 6:00 – 7:00 p.m., Virtual Program
Learn the basics of estate planning—what it is, how it works and why you should do it. Led by 40-year estate planning veteran Stu Bronstein. 

Best Retirement Savings Plans for You – Friday, April 7, 2023, 12:00 – 1:00 p.m., Virtual Program
Get into the facts about SEP-IRAs, SOLO 401(k)s, Roth vs. Traditional IRAs, Backdoor Roths, the Mega-Backdoor and other tax-advantaged savings opportunities. This is your chance to figure out which plans are best for you.

Property Tax 101 – Monday, April 10, 2023, 11:00 – 12:00 p.m., Virtual Program
San Francisco Assessor Joaquín Torres teaches how to calculate your property tax and explains what these taxes pay for and how to pay them.   Knowing how your property taxes work, what causes them to go up and down and what exemptions are available is important—and that knowledge can even save you money.

The Psychology of Spending – Tuesday, April 11, 2023, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m., Virtual Program
Learn strategies and tactics to decode your money personality and make smart money decisions. We all have a “money personality” and it has a major impact on our attitudes, relationship with money, and spending habits.  This is Part I of a three-part series from the San Francisco Office of Financial Empowerment.

Original Medicare Overview with Scott Rowe Insurance Solutions – Wednesday, April 12, 2023, 2:00 – 3:00 p.m., Anza Branch Library, 550 37th Avenue, San Francisco
Business owner Scott Rowe will discuss Medicare so you and your loved ones can navigate your health care needs more successfully. Ample time for questions and answers will follow the presentation. This is the 1st part of a three-part series. 

Avoiding Scams, Fraud and Identity Theft – Thursday, April 13, 2023, 11:00 – 12:00 p.m., Virtual Program
Attorney Oak Dowling will enlighten and educate on how to protect older adults against common financial scams.  Dowling is a retired attorney with 43 years of practice, including 31 years in San Rafael. Oak has been a member of the Marin County Financial Abuse Specialist Team (“FAST”) since 2011. Beth Fernbacher has an MBA from University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. She has worked in banking and financial consulting and now works as a Realtor. Her experience working in finance showed her how easily people can commit financial fraud.

Everyone Retires—Things You Should Think About – Friday, April 14, 2023, 3:00 – 4:30 p.m., Virtual Program
How to potentially think about retirement planning over time.   We will discuss steps to think about as retirement gets closer, why asset allocation could change, when you should consider asset allocation changes and the time horizon in retirement. 

Demystifying the Financial Planning Process – Saturday, April 15, 2023, 11:00 – 12:00 p.m., Virtual Program
Learn about the financial planning process, the areas covered by a comprehensive financial plan and its value proposition, along with suggestions on how to choose a financial advisor. Presented by Rachna Bijlani, CFP®. 

When Do You Need Medicare Part B? with Scott Rowe Insurance Solutions – Tuesday, April 18, 2023, 5:00 – 6:00 p.m., Anza Branch Library, 550 37th Avenue
Business owner Scott Rowe will discuss Medicare Part B so you and your loved ones can navigate your health care needs more successfully. Ample time for questions and answers will follow the presentation. This is the 2nd part of a three-part series. 

Turning Tomorrow into Today: How to Overcome Procrastination – Thursday, April 20, 2023, 4:30 – 5:30 p.m., Virtual Program
When procrastination kills your ideas and routinely stalls your career you can learn how to change your approach to it.  As the author of The Fearless Factor, The Fearless Factor @ Work, When The Crow Sings, and soon to be published, The Fearless Woman Handbook, Jacqueline Wales has explored human behavior and asked tough questions to discover hard truths for more than 35 years and now works with clients to achieve remarkable results that help them go beyond fear.

Get More Out of Your Cash Flow – Friday, April 21, 2023, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m., Virtual Program
Streamline your cash flow to get more money at the end of the month and more time during the month.   Alicia Ivancovich is a Certified Financial Planner™ with a financial planning practice in Oakland.  She provides pro bono financial advice through 

Why Invest in Stocks? – Saturday, April 22, 2023, 11:00 – 12:00 p.m., Virtual Program
What stocks are and why should you be interested in them. We will discuss stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs, how to decide which investment concept works for you, how to start investing and why equities might make sense for you. 

Introduction to Smart Investing Tuesday, April 25, 2023, 4:00 – 5:00 p.m., Virtual Program
An introduction to investing in the stock and bond markets, how to create an overall investment plan that suits you, options for implementing your plan and good reminders for managing investments over time.   

Insurance — Know Your Sub-limits – Wednesday, April 26, 2023, 4:00 – 5:00 p.m., Virtual Program
How insurance works and how sub-limits affect insurance coverage: carriers often place limits on areas of coverage that you are likely to need if you have a claim. Presented by Brian K. Trouette, Trouette Insurance Agency, LLC.

Covering What Original Medicare Doesn't with Scott Rowe Insurance Solutions – April 26, 2023,  5:00 – 6:00 p.m.,  Anza Branch Library, 550 37th Avenue
Business owner Scott Rowe will discuss Medicare coverage so you and your loved ones can navigate your health care needs more successfully. Ample time for questions and answers will follow the presentation. This is the 3rd part of a three-part series. 

Behavioral Finance How to Bring Your Best Instincts to Your Financial Plan – Thursday, April 27, 2023, 12:00 – 1:00 p.m., Virtual Program
Learn about some of the fascinating, Nobel-prize winning research on how real humans behave in economic decision-making and explore some strategies for overcoming irrational biases and sub-optimal financial behavior. 

Dividends Investing for Beginners – Saturday April 29, 2023, 11:00 – 12:30 p.m., Virtual Program
Investing in dividends is a slow and steady way of growing your wealth. Learn how to review resources to find dividend-paying stocks. We will review two Blue Chip companies that have raised their dividends and the effects of automatic reinvesting.   Presented by Harriet Chan of BetterInvesting.

Marzo 14, 2023