Working responsibly

Charitable giving

We support the communities in which we work through focused social investment and charitable donations.

In regions where we have operations, our support for local communities is coordinated in-country as part of our Impact Benefit Plan activities.

We have an annual charitable giving programme, managed by our Charities Committee. All requests for funding are considered and evaluated in line with the Committee’s selection criteria.

Selection criteria

We support charities that share our core values of Building Respect, Nurturing Relationships and Acting Responsibly, and that encourage the behaviours we value in our own organisation, such as teamwork, fostering individual potential and encouraging entrepreneurial spirit.

Our charitable giving is disbursed across a number of categories including young people, communities, health, environment, arts and culture, and education and learning.

Application guidelines
  • We consider applications from registered charities only.
  • Our support is primarily limited to charities operating in Edinburgh and Lothians.
  • Previous applicants are welcome to reapply, regardless of whether they were successful or not in previous rounds.
  • We do not provide details of average funding and minimum/maximum donations.
  • We cannot provide any specific feedback if an application is unsuccessful.
  • We are unable to provide any information in addition to what is available on this webpage regarding our donations and charitable giving process.
  • We often make partial donations.
  • We will consider multi-year support.
Please note that Capricorn does not fund:
  • charities with religious or political affiliations;
  • political parties;
  • places of worship;
  • labour unions;
  • organisations where there is a potential conflict of interest;
  • organisations that discriminate; or
  • individual sponsorship.


The Deadline for applications for 2024 funding is 17th November 2023.  You can download the application form here.


Case Study

Investing in Scotland’s Children

In 2006, Capricorn’s founder created Winning Scotland, a charity dedicated to building young people’s confidence by working with those who have the greatest everyday influence: teachers, parents and caregivers. Capricorn is proud to continue with this support.

Winning Scotland works with schools to encourage a growth mindset, where people believe success is determined by effort and skills development rather than innate talent. The Mindset Teams initiative supports teachers to embed this approach over a 12-month period. Around 500 teachers were supported in 2021, with 97% believing it will make them better at their job and 90% saying it improved student–teacher relationships.

As COVID-19 restrictions eased in 2021 and schools reopened, Winning Scotland developed ‘Limitless Learning’ to fast-track growth mindset development. Six e-modules, each with a live online seminar, guided teachers on how to support students returning to the classroom. Between January and June 2021, 61 teachers participated in a numeracy-focused pilot, with 100% feeling it improved their knowledge.

Following its success in Iceland, Winning Scotland has introduced the ‘Planet Youth’ programme to Scotland, starting in 13 secondary schools with 2,000 students. The project aims to identify what is needed to keep children safe, healthy and happy in their communities.


By listening to teenagers, steps can be taken to prevent risky behaviours like drinking and smoking, while helping families spend more time together and engage with their local community. Capricorn has been Winning Scotland’s biggest supporter for 15 years and throughout 2021, we maintained this position, helping make a difference for children during a time of great need.

Find out more about Mindset in Education and Winning Scotland’s fantastic work here.


Case Study


Young people from the UK’s most disadvantaged areas are up to four times less likely to go to university, and up to 12 times less likely to enter a top university, than those in the most advantaged areas.*

This makes it harder for these young people to succeed in a competitive job market: young people from disadvantaged backgrounds are almost 60% less likely to be in a professional job across England, Scotland and Wales.** The long-term effects can be felt across society, as communities with low education and employment prospects become increasingly marginalised.

As a business focused on discovering and developing potential, we’re proud to support IntoUniversity. This national education access charity, operates local learning centres in deprived communities across the UK, each of which supports at least 1,000 young people a year. They support students from disadvantaged backgrounds to raise their aspirations, develop soft skills, improve their attainment and ultimately achieve successful futures. Around 66% of IntoUniversity students progressed to university in 2021 compared with 26% of students from similar backgrounds nationally.

IntoUniversity believes that all young people have the capacity for high achievement if they are determined, motivated, and get the support and advice they need. We agree.

In the second tab, read about the experience of Alicia, a primary school pupil from Craigmillar, who has recently begun to attend the Edinburgh centre we support:

* UCAS 2020.
** State of the Nation Report, Social Mobility Commission.


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Thanks to our generous supporters, like Capricorn Energy, we've begun supporting the local community in Craigmillar. In partnership with the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow, the IntoUniversity programme complements existing provision in the area with additional and dedicated educational opportunities available to young people. It is heartening to see the positive feedback we've already had from the students, schools and community organisations we've engaged with, and I look forward to seeing the long-term impact the centre has via the new opportunities it provides.

Kirsty Wadsley, Head of Operations – Scotland, IntoUniversity

Case Study

Alicia's Story

Alicia, a P5 student, first started coming to Primary Academic Support at the centre after the IntoUniversity Craigmillar team shared a post with Connecting Craigmillar, a local community group, on Facebook. Alicia’s mum called straight away and enquired about Academic Support. Alicia attends one of the centre’s partner Primary schools so has also participated in the Primary FOCUS programme.

When she first started coming to the centre, her mum shared concerns with the team that Alicia had lost a lot of confidence with her school work during the pandemic and had struggled with home learning, particularly needing additional support with her Maths work. Alicia was slightly reserved when she first started coming to the centre and was a quieter participant in the group, however since coming to Academic Support, the IntoUniversity staff can see a big difference in Alicia’s confidence.

As each week progresses, she contributes more in group discussions and is always keen to get involved with every task. She comes into the classroom with a big smile each week and has commented that she finds Maths easier since coming to Academic Support. Alicia always aims really high in each session and will always try her hardest, even if it is out of her comfort zone. Alicia’s mum has shared with the team multiple times how much Alicia enjoys coming to Academic Support and how much she enjoyed the Primary FOCUS programme.

What do you hope to achieve by coming to IntoUniversity?

‘I am excited each week to come to IntoUniversity and I am excited for today’s session! I hope to make new friends and get some help with my school work. I think the sessions are fun and we get to learn about new things and subjects.’

How has IntoUniversity helped you?

‘IntoUniversity has helped me with new subjects. I didn’t know about History of Art and I have learnt about it here. IntoUniversity has helped me with Maths and negative numbers. I feel so good coming to IntoUniversity. I learnt about university [in a Primary FOCUS workshop] with IntoUniversity. We looked at different pictures and I would like to go to university in the countryside.’

What is your best memory of IntoUniversity? Why?

‘I have enjoyed learning about negative numbers and how to work out minus numbers. I have enjoyed the auction during Academic Support…I found the auction really exciting, I won lots of new pictures.’


What do you most enjoy about IntoUniversity?

“I look forward to seeing my friend Hannah. I like meeting new people and have meet lots of new people already. I enjoyed learning about History of Art and the activities. I enjoy all of the activities.”

Which IntoUniversity programme did you find most beneficial and why? 

“I have enjoyed everything I have done with IntoUniversity, there have been loads of good things. I had heard about university before, but the sessions had cleared up some things I knew already. Academic Support helps with my school work.”

How has IntoUniversity supported you to think about your future?

“I would like to look after pets. I would like to be a vet and I also want to work at Pets at Home. There are lots of cute rabbits and hamsters. IntoUniversity helped me think about my future.”

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