The foundation was created in 1981, as part of Zurich Community Trust and achieved independent charitable status in 2019.
It organises fundraising and community projects undertaken by staff and advisers at Openwork which has 4,000 financial advisers.
The money raised by the Foundation – which includes funds matched by the business to create a 50% boost to donations – has helped the foundation make more than 1,500 grants to charities in the UK and overseas, many supporting vulnerable children and young adults.
Regular monthly donations from Openwork Partners, advisers and staff are a key source of income each year and accounted for 70% of income last year despite the Covid-19 pandemic hit fundraising plans.
Funds raised are distributed as charitable grants to national, local, and overseas projects nominated by advisers and staff.
The Foundation’s first grant of £150,000 enabled learning disability charity, Mencap to create an education centre for people with learning difficulties at Dilston Hall in Northumberland. In recent years it has supported Youth Adventure Trust, funding places for young people from Swindon to attend the three-year Youth Adventure Programme.
More than £2.2m has been raised from the annual Cycle Challenges, which have seen participants cover 185,000 miles – many in developing countries. The Foundation also supports UK registered charities helping communities overseas including building a school from recycled shipping containers in the Philippines.
Sam Tesch, Openwork Foundation Manager said: “Every year we are blown away by the support the Openwork advisers and staff give to the Foundation and I am incredibly proud of what we have achieved in the past 40 years. Last year was particularly challenging for everyone, and we definitely felt it as a charity.”
Plans for 2021 include participating in London Marathon, as well as organising several bespoke events, including South Downs at Night Trek, a Charity Evening and Auction and local runs, quizzes, race nights, cycles and cake bakes.