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Pennysmart CIC

Pennysmart advice service sets out to target those most at risk of falling; or already in financial crisis.

A £10,000 grant from Cheshire Community Foundation was applied for, to provide support for 65 vulnerable households in Cheshire East, and to provide money awareness training for 50 frontline staff/volunteers during the 12-month grant period.

This project was a winner of a CCF President’s Award 2004, in recognition of its success and the excellence of delivery and outcomes.


Jayne Bellis Founding Director receives President’s award from Lady Alexis Redmond MBE and Mel Sproston, CCF CEO. Photo: Clicked by Kate

Debt is a crippling issue in many of the deprived communities in Cheshire and Warrington, and with loan sharks on the rise it’s one that will escalate without specialist intervention. Debt not only brings poverty, but the accompanying stress impacts health and mental wellbeing in every household.

The film below illustrates the enormous impact of this much-needed project.

Thank you so much for this award in recognition of our work. We are delighted to be able to continue and grow our services in Cheshire East. Thanks to this grant, we provided free-to client money advice and casework support services, primarily over the telephone but increasingly using digital channels such as WhatsApp, email, and SMS. We work with community-based referral partners who identify those most in need and make personal referrals into the service. We provided this service to 133 households in financial crisis in Cheshire East with this funding from 1 Apr 22 to 31 Mar 23. To maintain up to date relationships with our community referral partners we delivered free online workshops to help frontline staff/volunteers to recognise the symptoms and causes of financial hardship and debt and know how and where to get the right free impartial help for their clients. This grant helped us to fund a successful, much-needed service for the people of Cheshire East. We were able to run a viable social enterprise for a further 12 months, create 2 new jobs for local people and onboard 4 new advice contracts nationally, which help to subsidise our service in the local community. Thank you so much CCF.

Jayne Bellis
Founding Director, Pennysmart