Making a difference, pennies at a time
6 Sep 2021


With the decline of the UK public using cash, often opting for card or contactless phone payments when buying their weekly shop or paying for their meal in a restaurant, the longstanding charity classic, the fundraising collection tin, isn’t filling up quite as fast as it used to.

In fact, five out of every six payments made in the UK are now cashless, so what does that mean for charities? And does this mean that the UK public no longer want to be able to donate their spare change in this way? It’s been an easy, low-cost and effective way of raising millions of pounds for charities over the years. A few loose coins doesn’t often feel like a huge commitment on an individual basis, but when hundreds of thousands of people are doing it every day, it can have a monumental impact.

This is where Pennies, the fintech charity which operates the ‘digital charity collection tin’, comes in. You may have used their donation service without even realising it at some point since their inception 10 years ago. It works in the exact same way as donating your change at a till by asking if you would like to round up your card payment to the nearest pound or donate a small set amount on top of your purchase to the businesses’ chosen charity. And boy, has it been effective. In 10 years they have raised over £30 million for over 650 charities from micro-donations made by UK consumers when making a card purchase in store or online. You can read about the incredible impact they have had for so many inspiring causes here.

To date this fundraising initiative has only been an option for large retailers, but as of 6th September 2021 it has been extended to be inclusive of small and independent businesses through the Pennies IPOSUP initiative. This means that any small business who uses the IPOSUP payment merchant can also show their support for their chosen charities and raise vital funds for them through micro-donations.

So how does this help to improve careers education?

Founders4Schools are proud to have been selected as one of the pioneering charities to partner with Pennies on this scheme to aid us in our mission to scale our services and make careers education accessible to all. It only costs us £1 to provide an inspirational business role model encounter for one student. A penny today will make a massive difference to the future lives of thousands of young people, putting them on the path to success through career inspiration.

So next time you’re asked if you want to round up your payment when you’re buying your flat white from the local cafe or paying for your new ‘do’ from your hairdressers or barbers, you will know that although it may not seem like your digital spare change will make much of a difference, you are part of a much bigger picture which is making a positive change to the world, pennies at a time.

How your business can support young futures

If you are a small business owner or work for a large retailer and would like to know more about getting involved with the Pennies or Pennies IPOSUP scheme, please contact Melanie on melanie.bodaly@founders4schools.org.uk for more information.

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