Employees at Lycetts’ Newcastle office have donated almost £10,000 to charities and causes close to their hearts, through a philanthropic employee grants scheme.

Lycetts, an insurance broker and financial services provider, gave every one of their employees across the UK the opportunity to nominate a charity of their choice to receive a £125 donation through MyGiving.

The initiative, a staff-led programme run by Lycetts’ parent company Ecclesiastical Insurance Group (EIG), generated £25,000 for 140 different fundraising organisations.

Seventy-nine donations were made by the Newcastle team, totalling £9,875.

The grant recipients varied from national charities, such as Cancer Research UK and the Alzheimer’s Society, to smaller, more local organisations, including the Durham Music Trust, the Gateshead Foodbank and the Northumbria Blood Bikes.

Charles Foster, CEO at Lycetts, said: “A commitment to corporate social responsibility lies at the very the heart of Lycetts’ culture and ethos.

“Not only do all of our available profits go to the Allchurches Trust, which in turn invests them back into the community, but our staff fully embrace the business’ charitable approach to giving back to those in need.

“We’re delighted to give our employees the opportunity to donate to the causes they care about, and to give deserving organisations an unexpected boost during these trying economic times.”

County Durham-based Learning for Life, which provides education and care for adults aged 16 plus with high support needs, special educational needs and disabilities, is one of the charities to benefit from the employee grants scheme.

Learning for Life students on a recent trip

The charity, which helps its students learn practical skills, such as shopping, food preparation and home management skills, onsite and in the community, received a £500 cash injection, after being nominated by four employees.

Lycetts is an avid supporter of the charity, both in terms of monetary support and student opportunities.  As well as being one of EIG’s chosen charities, Learning for Life has an ongoing student work experience placement at the Newcastle office.

Marie Matthewson, Learning for Life principal, said: “We cannot thank Lycetts enough for their continued support for Learning for Life and our students.

“Donations are vital in allowing us to continue our work with our wonderful students and the kind contribution of £500 by Lycetts employees will help us to support our young learners in leading more independent lives, in reaching their full potential and fulfilling their aspirations.”

The Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS) was another recipient of grant money, having been nominated by six employees, receiving a total of £750.

GNAAS provides air ambulance services across the North-East, Cumbria and North Yorkshire and is entirely funded by charity.

Leya Baksh, GNAAS Corporate Fundraising Officer said: “It’s great to hear employees from Lycetts chose GNAAS as their nominated charity, resulting in a £750 donation. This money will help us continue to deliver word-class pre-hospital care to the people in our region.”

The employee grants scheme formed part of Ecclesiastical Insurance Group’s pledge to donate £100million to charity over a five year-period ending in 2020.