Bright Futures:

How Stamford Endowed Schools Transformed Bursary Fundraising with Donorfy


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Stamford Logo
  • Migrated from: Donor Strategy
  • No of Constituents: 16,000 +
  • Total Annual Income: £27,000,000 +
  • Charity Type: Education
  • Donorfy Package: Professional

Founded in 1532, Stamford Endowed Schools is a group of independent schools located in the East Midlands. Catering to students from ages 2 to 18, and known for their academic and extracurricular excellence, the students thrive in a well-rounded educational environment.

The Stamford Card is an internal fundraising initiative which supports bursaries at the schools. In 2022/23 alone, the Schools have provided over £2million in bursary funding for students, including a hardship fund that supports families who experience a sudden change in circumstances. 


The Stamford Card

First introduced almost 20-years ago, The Stamford Card is an initiative steeped in community spirit. For just £10 a month, cardholders get access to exclusive benefits and offers at over 140 local businesses across Stamford. Every penny from the card’s fees fund bursaries.

It's a win-win scenario - supporting local businesses, while giving families a chance they might not have otherwise had. These life-changing bursaries are available for students, of all backgrounds, who wouldn’t ordinarily be able to attend the school.



Administration and Data Hub

Donorfy isn't just a tool; it's the backbone of the administration of the scheme, providing a comprehensive platform for managing various aspects and enhancing the efficiency of critical processes. 

It begins with a Donorfy sign-up form that we embed into our website, allowing us to capture the latest data.” explains Dale, Digital Marketing and Development Officer. But they don’t stop there, he continues: “This is complimented by a similar ‘Update your Details’ form which ensures long-term accuracy of information.”

With Donorfy, the team also manages and monitors recurring payments effortlessly, thanks to tailored payment instructions generated by the form. Utilising the GoCardless integration, payments are automatically tracked and recorded to constituent timelines, saving valuable time and resources.

Additionally, using an activity in the cardholder’s timelines, the team tracks the expiry dates of cards, safeguarding against lapses and ensuring timely renewals. 

  Should this happen, we can contact the card holder to make enquiries, whilst also thanking them for their involvement to date. This personalised approach is important in their stewardship journey, while being proactive to prevent disruptions in service. It fosters a sense of reliability and consistency along with a personal touch.” adds Dale.

For managing the businesses involved in the scheme, Donorfy serves as a comprehensive directory for that data too. From storing essential contacts to cataloging their individual offers, the Stamford team’s use of Donorfy supporters fast and easy access to a wide-ranging picture of the scheme as a whole.

Finally,  Donorfy's integration with Mailchimp enables the team to craft and distribute targeted communications, elevating the personalised experience of the scheme even further.

Overall, it’s a use of the system that’s amazingly inventive - and we love how they’re doing more with Donorfy.


Revamp and Results

Despite its history of success, the team recognised the potential for even greater impact with a revamped approach, extending their ability to provide the all-important funding support.

While the scheme was ticking over for many years, we knew the Stamford Card had untapped potential.” explains Dale. “That’s why we relaunched it in December 2023, to increase the impact and raise more funds for families.”

The subsequent rebranding and social media campaign was a huge success - since the start of the relaunch, their following increased by 59%. 

The best result though? In the four years since they’ve been using Donorfy to facilitate the scheme, the card has generated over £100,000 for transformational bursaries.

Reflecting on his personal experience, James Lavers, Digital Content Officer at the school, adds:

As someone who was a recipient of a bursary at my time at Stamford School, without the Stamford Card, I would not have had the opportunities which the School had to offer me.”

The campaign's success garnered well-deserved recognition at the recent Donorfy Awards, where the team stood out as finalists in the Campaign of the Year category. 

This acknowledgement was down to their fantastic achievements and their innovative and impressive use of Donorfy.” said Ben Twyman, Donorfy CCO. He added, “We hope that, being named finalists in such a tough category, served as a testament to their commitment to giving all families a chance to join the school.”

Hear it from Dale


Hear what Dale thinks of Donorfy, in his own words. 

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