A year of giving back at Penna


06 Jan 2021

A year of giving back at Penna

In 2019, we launched our Christmas campaign which has since supported 19 charities, both nationally and locally, and raised thousands of pounds for Barnardo’s, RSPCA, Victim Support and many more. Through a year of turbulence, we’re still committed and still giving back to our charitable causes. Here’s how.

Supporting the Trussell Trust with our Penna Presence

We know that the most wonderful time of the year is hard for some, particularly this year. So, inspired by the work we see from our clients, candidates and wider networks, the Penna and Stafford Long Family decided to support food bank network, The Trussell Trust – who campaign for change and a hunger free winter in our communities.

Since the start of the pandemic, the trust has given 2,600 food parcels a day to children. That’s one child needing support from a food bank every 34 seconds from April to September. It’s statistics like these which motivated Penna and Stafford Long to support the charity through their busiest winter ever, by giving each of our staff £15 to donate in food and household supplies to their local centre.

It started in a small way but now we’re helping adults and children by visiting our local food banks with parcels hand-delivered by our family. From Oldham to Old Street, we’ve been donating much needed items countrywide this December. It’s often the little things that mean the most. And it’s been no different this year for the Trussell Trust. They rely heavily on the public to share what they can. 90% of all the essential supplies they give to others come from donations, so we got to work by taking our Penna Presence to food banks all across the UK, including the Florence Bennett centre on the doorstep of our new office in Hackney. We’ve been amazed at the generosity of our Penna colleagues - over 50 Penna people volunteered to put parcels together.

Sharing our Presence, and making their cause more visible, means that these charities are able to deliver crucial services to help feed those who are hungry and inevitably fight for their mission to see a hunger free future.

Our MD, Julie Towers, delivered her own food parcel donation in her home City of Nottingham. She said, “In a year where we’ve all pulled together, cheered the key workers and seen unprecedented economic changes it seemed only fitting that we support those who need a little help.”

Our social responsibility continues across the pond

We couldn’t stop at food banks. We passed the baton to so many other charities who’s fundraising has suffered because of the pandemic. On a Coffee Afternoon, 68 Penna and Stafford Long colleagues came together in their purple socks, scarves and slippers to help us raise £1,350 for Macmillan Cancer Support. We’ve since received a lovely e-Card from Macmillan’s London Manager, Julie, who joined us as our VIP speaker.

Together we shared our personal stories, cheered on our colleagues who are currently soldiering through treatment and played Guess Who, sharing lots of chuckles at everyone’s baby photos.

We also took our colleagues over international waters with ‘An hour in Africa’, hosted by our fabulous Front of House, Sharon Kerry, who continues to inspire us with her work helping to bring clean drinking water to Kenya Kids in rural villages. We raised enough funds to send them a new water pump and get it built in time for next summer. 


Change on the inside – Now bringing The Stage to you at home

For our professional networks and clients and candidates, we gave our time in a different way, getting creative and designing a one-of-a-kind virtual celebration of talent and recruitment. Over 200 of our clients, candidates and connections joined us on The Stage 2020. Our guest speakers gave their expert take on social care, the future of work, student marketing. Our consultants gave free advice and support to job seekers, recruiters and hiring managers and so much more. The curtains may have closed on 2020, but the conversation continues. You can still speak to us at info@penna.com for information.

Supporting Care Leavers

Julie Towers spoke at the Care Leavers Covenant’s 2020 Empathy Summit. We signed up to the Care Leaver Covenant in 2020 in order to support them with their mission to help care leavers get into work. In 2021 we’ll be running workshops across the UK to provide the vital support needed for Care Leavers to find and secure a job. Watch Julie’s full speech at the summit at https://vimeo.com/472768787.

Championing great senior leadership

Celebrating the success of key workers at all levels drove us in 2020. As sponsor and judge of the MJ’s Senior Leadership Team of the Year category we were privileged to see great work across local government. Julie Towers commented, “we’re not the biggest company but we want to make the biggest impact in developing leadership and finding and exciting talent for the public sector.” For more of Julie’s commentary and insight visit https://www.themj.co.uk/From-good-to-great/218814.

Our winner, Calderdale Council, demonstrated their leadership and resilience after devastating floors in the area.

Sharing our finalists’ experience on an external webinar in December rounded off an unprecedented year on a high.

Doing more in 2021

We look forward to doing even more in 2021 for our staff elected charities – Macmillan and Kenya Kids and supporting the Care Leavers Covenant and The Trussell Trust.

It’s great to be making a difference up and down the country with #PennaPresence and to our networks who’ve helped us throughout 2020 we’d like to say an extra special thank you, https://www.instagram.com/p/CJDwOAkFIWr/.

You can also follow our campaign hashtag on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Facebook – just search for ‘#PennaPresence’ or @wearepenna.