Children’s University is very fortunate to enjoy the support of several exceptionally generous companies and grant-making trusts, all of whom share our commitment to raising young people’s aspirations, helping them to discover unknown talents and interests and, ultimately, improving their life chances.
Investment is vital and by no means limited to hard cash: services, venues, products and staff time, skills and expertise all play an equally critical role. Please find below a snapshot of some of our key supporters:
MacFarlanes LLP generously agreed to undertake CU Trust’s legal requirements on a pro-bono basis. In particular, staff focussed on creating a social franchise infrastructure which allowed Children’s University to realise its international growth ambitions. As a result, children across the globe are now able to benefit from the programme and operations have recently launched in Malaysia, Singapore and Australia with further not-for-profit ventures set to start in Sri Lanka and China later this year.
The Education Endowment Foundation/Cabinet Office have invested £550k over 2.5 years to pilot the Children’s University model as a vehicle to promote increased engagement in social action amongst primary-aged children. The pilot is currently underway in x schools across Lancashire/Middlesbrough with Durham University evaluating the impact on all pupils involved. Assuming the pilot proves to be as successful as initial indicators suggest, the intention is to extend to the wider CU network longer term.
The Esmee Fairbairn Foundation very generously awarded a grant of £100k over 3 years, on a reducing basis, so we could appoint a Head of Local Support and Development, Debbie Bird. Her role is to spearhead the continued growth of the local CU network in England. In less than two years the number of centres has grown and more children are now benefiting from CU services nationally. This appointment has also played a critical role in ensuring the long-term sustainability of the organisation and its membership bodies.
F2UNI and the Fidelity Foundation have jointly invested £50,000 in the development of the ‘Learning Destination and E-Passport‘ App, officially launched in May 2015. The App will make it far easier for parents, carers and children alike to pinpoint the exact whereabouts of individual ‘Learning Destinations’ as users will able to select one or more filters, such as location, activity type, time and applicable age range. Once activities have been completed, credits can then be uploaded onto a child’s E-passport via the App; making the whole process instantaneous and entirely eliminating the need for computer access.
Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) generously allocated the Children’s University premium exhibition space, free of charge, at their 2015 annual conference. The event was attended by universities, further education colleges and FTSE100 companies and provided a great platform to raise awareness amongst key stakeholders and forge relations with potential programme partners.
Birmingham Solicitors Group (BSG): Many local CUs are also fortunate to be supported by foundations, companies, individuals and/or public agencies. One supporter we are particularly keen to recognise is the Birmingham Solicitors Group (BSG). Birmingham CU was selected as the Group’s ‘Charity of the Year’ and its members have worked tirelessly over the course of the last 12 months to organise a series of imaginative events to raise money for the charity. Not only have members generated much needed income, they have also greatly raised the profile of the programme across the city and increased uptake amongst schools and pupils accordingly.