Our community

Everyone at PenLife cares deeply about giving something back to the causes that matter. From charities based in the York area doing vital work, to national organisations that mean something to us and our clients, we’re doing our bit for the greater good.

Charities we love

Since 2019, we’ve focused most of our fundraising efforts on one charity of the year at a time. This year, it’s Menfulness.

This York-based charity brings men together to socialise, exercise and enjoy themselves whilst sharing their experiences in a supportive, impartial and environment that improves mental and physical health. Our donations help Menfulness continue their incredible work, and also go to the men’s counselling or helping to get their message to more men!

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Here’s what we’ve raised to date:

Through our charity of the year programme, we’ve supported a wide range of worthy causes. Every little helps, and we’re so pleased to have been able to have a small hand in this.

See just what we’ve been able to donate to our previous charity of the year recipients right here.

2023: The Island - £5,426

2022: Stroke Association - £6,003

2022: York Against Cancer - £3,003

2021: SASH - £6,173

2020: York Mind - £3,000

2019: Dementia Forward - £10,480

Heworth Amateur Rugby League FC 1st Team

This local amateur rugby club runs various teams from under 7s to 18s, two Open Age teams, and a “Little Heroes” team for children aged 3 to 6. Our Chartered Financial Planner, Adam Dent, plays for the Open Age first team, and was voted Coaches’ Player of the Year in 2021. Well done, Adam!

Bishopthorpe White Rose Junior Football Club

This local football team welcomes boys and girls aged 5 to 16. As an amateur organisation, the club relies on donations to be able to provide safe and inclusive footballing opportunities for the local community. We’re delighted to lend our support.

Craig Forsyth – Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge

Local man Craig took on the challenge of crossing the Atlantic in a rowing boat. He set off from the Canary Islands in Spain, heading for Antigua and Barbuda, a journey of 3,000 miles, which he completed in 73 days. Craig’s solo adventure raised much-needed support and awareness for two important charities: Sporting Chance, and the Motor Neurone Disease Association.

The Millie Wright Children’s Charity

This local charity runs “Supper Saturdays” for parents and carers on Ward L50 at Leeds Children’s Hospital. This provides a hot meal for parents who are often at their child’s bedside for weeks or months at a time, often eating poorly or not at all as a result. From August to December 2022, we paid for pizzas every Saturday night for the 10 or more families on the ward.

Tang Hall Big Local

This National Lottery-funded initiative was set up to support children from challenging backgrounds in the Tang Hall area of York. Our donation has helped to provide food for some of the children who enjoy the activities organised by the charity.

Our sponsorships

We’re so proud to be based in York, and feel it’s so important to give something back to those doing great work in the region. One of the ways we do this is through our sponsorships of local organisations and initiatives.

Find out more about some of the people we’ve supported, and what our involvement has helped them achieve.

The next generation

Companies like ours can provide young people with an incredible introduction to the world of work. From time to time, we offer work experience opportunities for school children, as well as college and university students. Here’s what some of them had to say about their experience.

"I’m an Accounting, Business Finance and Management student at the University of York doing my Year in Industry placement at PenLife. I didn’t know what to expect at the beginning of my placement, as I had no previous experience in the financial industry or even working in an office environment. Working at PenLife has exceeded all my expectations of what a year in industry would be like. From the beginning, I felt welcomed into the team. I’m continually offered new opportunities to learn and expand on my skillset. I hope to take some of the skills I’ve developed, such as time management, into my final year of study and beyond that once I enter the workplace."

Tom Dunn, Work placement student

"I’d just like to say that I’m so grateful that you’ve let me come and do work experience at PenLife! I’ve learned how to do some admin work, how Excel works, and about different types of meetings and what ‘Rocks’ are. I think this experience has been so fun and really educational. I want to say thank you so much for being so welcoming and kind. I’ve enjoyed doing the work and getting to know everyone. I’m sure I’ll be back someday, whether it’s for more work experience during the holidays or possibly an apprenticeship!"

Leah Z, Work experience student

Other initiatives

Marine Conservation Society

The Marine Conservation Society is a charity fighting for a cleaner, better protected, and healthier ocean. They organise beach cleans up and down the country, and we were delighted to be able to join a team of litter pickers in nearby Scarborough. Every single item found in a 100-mile stretch was recorded, which will help the charity track litter back to its source and continue campaigning for change.

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The Arts

Every August bank holiday weekend, local artists from Upper and Nether Poppleton near York exhibit their work in the beautiful surroundings of the historic Tithe Barn in Church Lane. Around 250 paintings by more than 25 artists are exhibited, along with cards and unframed paintings for sale. We’re proud sponsors of the exhibition.

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Disasters Emergency Committee

The conflict in Ukraine has forced many families to flee their homes, leaving behind jobs, belongings and loved ones. Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) charities are working in Ukraine and neighbouring countries to provide food, water, health assistance, protection, and trauma care to refugees and displaced people. We’ve made a donation to the DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal.

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Refer a friend

Hundreds of people have benefited from our expert support over the years. If you’re one of them, why not spread the word? For each of the first five referrals you make, we’ll pay you £50. For every referral after that, we’ll increase it to £100. And you can refer us to as many people as you like.

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