21Lives, the power of stories


Life insurance is so much more than just a contract. It’s about protecting a life worth sharing. FMI shares these stories through its 21Lives campaign.

FMI has a unique approach when it comes to life insurance. They believe your greatest asset is not a house or a car, but the ability to earn an income, and that all life insurance benefits should be designed to protect this. The insurer believes the best way to protect your monthly income is by ensuring that the insurance product you choose pays a combination of lump sum and monthly income benefits, and that you aren’t just covered for possible permanent risks, like death or disability, but also for temporary injury or illness.

FMI is not only unique in the way that they approach life insurance products, but in their empathetic and authentic approach to doing business. “The fact that we care about people forms the foundation for everything we do. It’s people’s real-life stories that inspire us and drive us to continually improve our products, and the lens by which we develop new ones to meet their needs,” says FMI marketing manager Grace Winter.

Read more: FMI #21 Lives – innovating insurance

FMI turned 21 years old and to mark the occasion, they split up into 21 staff teams and set off across the country to visit 21 inspiring policyholders who’ve had claims over the past 21 years. Each team captured their story in a short documentary film. “These are really important stories that we want to share. We have a responsibility as an industry to raise awareness of the importance of income cover, and we can do so through these stories,” says Brad Toerien, FMI CEO.

Sharing these powerful real-life stories with advisers and the public is set to change how the industry is perceived by simplifying the advice process and humanising insurance because the videos resonate with any working individual, and help raise the awareness of the need to insure your monthly income cover.

Alby van der Walt’s story is a perfect example. He has an unusual occupation that is both physically demanding and dangerous. As a farrier, he makes, fits and maintains horse shoes. Since 2000, he has had four claims with FMI. All on-the-job injuries, which resulted in him being unable to work. Alby has a family and two full-time employees who depend on him, and with the income he received from FMI, he was able to provide for them and pay the bills until he fully recovered.

FMI believes no matter what you do for a living, you should be able to protect your income. FMI’s event-based cover is a unique solution for more than 250 occupations, offering income protection to more people than ever before. Unlike cover that’s broadly defined and could exclude all sorts of circumstances, FMI set out to specify exactly what is included.

Whether you are an accountant or a farrier, FMI believes your income is everyone’s greatest asset. At the end of the day, everyone depends on their income. The risk of a temporary illness or injury is very real and for most of us even a temporary break in income can have permanent financial consequences. That’s why everybody should protect their income against any temporary or long-term disability and income protection should be a key part of every financial plan.

FMI’s #21Lives videos can be found on the website www.fmi.co.za for everyone to be able to relate the importance of cover to their own lives, along with 21 fact sheets that bring the technical product-related information to life in simple terms.