Our multi-award winning Donate Your Pennies scheme recently celebrated its fifth birthday, and it earned yet another award to mark the occasion!

Earlier this year, we were awarded our second Gold award at the Annual Pennies from Heaven Staff Giving Awards which are focused on recognising staff participation in giving schemes. We are proud to share that 36% of Essex staff are now signed up to the scheme and have raised an incredible £20,000 to support our students.

Every year, the funds raised from Donate Your Pennies supports the Colchester Sixth Form Bursary and VI6 Bursary, two schemes aimed at supporting first-year students that come from local schools and colleges, with each student receiving £1,000 at the end of their first term at Essex. When moving from further education to higher education, staying in the local area is important for many students and we’re proud to be able to support their transition thanks to our generous staff.

Here’s what one of this year’s recipients said:

“Thank you so much. Someone was willing to give me an opportunity, a small taste of one at least. It gave me a materialistic drive, a sense of motivation. It stood, and stands, as a reminder of what is on the line, not just in terms of myself, but others that are counting on the opportunity for success they have provided to myself and others. It also serves as encouragement to take opportunities and use them to their full extent. I sincerely hope that it carries on for others in the future. It means more than some people think.”
- Levi Dean, scholarship recipient 2020/21

This unique scheme continues to grow month by month, and we want to sincerely thank all staff donors for their participation which allows us to continue to award these bursaries year after year. 

Our next goal is to reach 50% of staff donating their pennies every month, a huge milestone that would help us to raise thousands more each year - you might be surprised how far all the pennies go! Please help us spread the word about the scheme to your colleagues and contact our Philanthropy team for more information.