Philanthropy in Schools

The Big Give Philanthropy in Schools programme aims to inspire the next generation of philanthropists by providing the first step towards a lifetime of charitable activity.

We are pleased to say that Oundle School recently joined the programme and Independent Education Today wrote an article about their experience – you can read it by clicking here.

The programme engages students in philanthropy and promotes the benefits of intelligent giving. Designed to be run during lesson time or as an after school activity, the scheme encourages thorough research into organisations and allows children to learn about the valuable work of a range of charities.

We are currently looking for new schools to join our free programme! If your school is interested in taking part, you can register now by clicking here.

How the programme works

The Philanthropy in Schools programme aims to teach students of any age about philanthropy and charitable giving. The programme asks them to research different charities, present their findings and then donate a charity voucher to an organisation that caught their interest, thus enabling students to experience the benefits of giving “like a philanthropist”.

There has been a great response from schools that have already taken part as both teachers and pupils found the experience enriching and inspiring. It is very important to engage young students in philanthropy as it gives them a fantastic opportunity to learn about the idea of intelligent giving, develop vital skills, make difficult choices and experience their ability to impact the world.

If you would like to find out more about this programme, please contact Sabina Wojtowicz, Philanthropy in Schools Programme Coordinator at the Big Give, at

Success Story – Personal reflection from a donor

Gregory Steele has been supporting Philanthropy in Schools for a number of years. Here he shares how his experience has not only enriched his life but has enabled hundreds of children to learn about and experience the value of philanthropy in society.


Read more

Success Story – Dragon School

In 2013, the Dragon School in North Oxford ran the scheme for a fifth year, dividing a £2,000 sponsor donation from Dragon Sale Committee between 23 Year 8 students.

Each student used to short-list two projects of interest. They researched these projects in greater detail and created reports explaining which of the charities would get their support, before donating their charity voucher online.

Students were then divided into groups before discussing their choices with their peers. Each group chose one project to present and elected a spokesperson.

The sponsor and the Big Give representative visited the Dragon School to meet the pupils and hear their presentations on a fantastic range of charities.

All presentations were of a very high standard and each speaker made a very persuasive argument to support their chosen causes.  The winning group presented a case for the Next Einstein Initiative – a charity focused on the teaching of mathematical sciences to African university graduates.  The runner-ups’ charities were Magic Breakfast and Research into Parkinson’s.

So far over 2,000 students in 20 schools across the country have already run the Philanthropy in Schools programme.

Success Story – Westminster Under School

In June 2012, Westminster Under School ran the Philanthropy in Schools programme for the third year. Thirty scholars, aged 12-13, took part in the scheme – which fitted well into the post-exam timetable.

Each student was asked to thoroughly investigate two charities of interest to them on The diversity of projects was huge, and ranged from a London based cleft palate and lip research centre to a campaign to help community health workers in Burma.

The students learned to evaluate each project according to a set of demanding criteria, particularly focusing on sustainable impact for the money invested. They were then placed into groups and asked to discuss their charities with their peers. As a group, they then chose one project to present to the judges.

The winning group presented on a project run by the Dalit Freedom Network. The runner-ups’ charities were Sparks and CORD. The judges agreed the overall standard of research and delivery in all the presentations was superb.

Gillie Howarth, who led the project at Westminster, said “The most valuable part of the experience for the participants was probably the negotiation within groups of three to settle on one project from the six they had investigated. It was excellent to see the generous team spirit which emerged and the respect for each other’s contributions. Thank you to the Big Give for providing us with this brilliant opportunity to explore the world of philanthropy. Let’s hope we are building a new generation who understand the importance of giving.”

Sponsor a School

You can sponsor a Philanthropy programme in the school of your choice for as little as £500. All of the money will be donated to charity, and your scheme will help to inspire a new generation of philanthropists. You will receive a full breakdown of the charities that receive your donation and we can arrange an optional visit to speak at the school.

To find out more about becoming a sponsor, please email us at

For Teachers

The programme is designed to introduce pupils to the benefits of charitable intelligent giving. It provides the opportunity to practice different writing styles and prepare persuasive oral presentations, whilst basic due-diligence is an example of mathematical analysis.

The Big Give offers a core programme, including a micro-site and sample assignments for pupils, and will work with you to add the optional components that fit with your school’s requirements.

For more information about running the programme in your school, please email us at

Register your School

We are currently looking for new schools to join our free programme! If your school is interested in taking part, you can register your school now by clicking here.

We’ll be in touch within a few hours with lots more information for you!