Energy companies are known for a great many things, but their charitable nature typically isn’t one of them. Then again, OVO Energy have always presented themselves as something a little different. With 33% of their energy coming from renewables as standard or 100% for a small extra charge, they’re greener than most. However, it’s their award winning customer service which really hints at what the company are about – being a better type of energy supplier.
A key to that reaching that goal is the OVO Foundation, but what is it, what does it do and how is it funded? Read on!
What is the Ovo Foundation?
The Ovo Foundation is the charitable arm of OVO Energy, founded in 2014 in order to expand OVO Energy’s charitable giving. Its three main areas of focus are, naturally, the energy & environment, youth poverty and education. Each chosen because of their particular resonance with the staff and customers of OVO. Let’s take a look at each of those three areas:
Education: The OVO Foundation supports local projects that open up pathways for children from underprivileged or underrepresented backgrounds, helping them unlock their talent and potential. By partnering with other charities, the team at the OVO Foundation are able to provide young people with confidence, skills and knowledge to help turn their lives around.
Energy & the Environment: OVO Energy are keen to see a change to the way we treat the environment, so it’d follow that their charitable arm would feel the same. The OVO Foundation protects local green areas, rejuvenates parks and community areas and works globally to help lift people out of energy poverty.
Youth Poverty: The OVO Foundation supports charities which are developing new ways to lift young people out of poverty and get those who have experienced homelessness back on their feet. They’ve made ‘poverty to potential’ part of their core mission and they believe that with intervention and support, they can tackle both youth poverty and homelessness.
Their goal is to do more than just achieve a base level of corporate kindness. They hope to share their ideas and expertise with others to help multiply their potential impact. OVO Foundation Manager Gaby Sethi said:
“Our approach to providing grants is different to many other charitable foundations. We’re innately curious, so we want to understand the root causes of the problem before we decide what or where we should fund. This approach means that we research important issues so we can work out where the funding gaps are and identify projects where we can have the biggest positive impact.”
How is the foundation funded?
The Ovo Foundation is funded through charitable donations made from their customers. By inviting their customer base to add a minimum of 25p to their bill, the company are able to generate substantial sums for charity.
Best of all though, OVO Energy match every penny that customers donate to the foundation. So, if you’ve donated £10 over the course of the year, the actual donation to foundation will be £20. It’s another way that Ovo are reengineering the typical approach to energy sales.
Image credit: OVO Foundation.