Customers at high street toy shop The Entertainer have raised over £100,000 for charity in just six months by donating their electronic spare change pennies. The week before Christmas saw a sudden leap to £13,000 in donations via the service.
The top-up donations are made using the Pennies Foundation service. It has handle more than 1.5 million consumer donations so far, raising over £380,000 for a total of 27 UK charities. The Pennies scheme launched with its first retailer, Domino’s Pizza, in November 2010.
Other partners include Travelodge and Zizzi restaurants, with DIY company Screwfix set to join the scheme this year.
The majority of the money raised by The Entertainer is shared equally between four children’s hospitals: Liverpool’s Alder Hey Imagine Appeal; Birmingham Children’s Hospital; Wallace & Gromit’s Grand Appeal which fundraises for Bristol Children’s Hospital; and Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity.
The remainder will be divided between ten other registered charities covering a range of causes including the elderly, cancer support and arts & education.
Gary Grant, Managing Director of The Entertainer, said: “Our traditional charity boxes would generate less than £2,000 a year so it has been tremendous to see the donations come in so quickly and easily with the electronic charity box.”
The Entertainer has 65 stores across the UK and plans to open a further 12 in 2012.
Alison Hutchinson, CEO of The Pennies Foundation, which created Pennies said: “We have always known that pennies are powerful, but we’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity of The Entertainer’s customers. More than from 350,000 individual donations have been made in such a short period of time, demonstrating how quickly those pennies can add up. We are so pleased that The Entertainer’s customers have embraced micro-donations and are making a real difference to sick children’s lives.”
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