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A community-driven success, Giving Week was a 7-day campaign for a better, fairer future.

Over 7 days from 9am on Monday 25 April 2022 alumnae, students, staff, Fellows and friends joined together to raise £136,377 (including £59,745 in gifts made during the week, £68,000 in unlocked match and challenge funding and £8,632 in Gift Aid) for four key priorities vital to Lucy’s important mission.

382 College members and friends made a contribution, and a dedicated team of 41 LucyGives Ambassadors helped spread the word. Supporters gave from across the worldwide Lucy community and beyond, with gifts received from donors in 22 different countries. We are immensely thankful to those alumnae and friends who so generously pledged match and challenge funding ahead of LucyGives, which was fully unlocked during the week.

A further contribution of £24,803 was unlocked towards a special fund for undergraduate financial support across Cambridge, as part of the University’s Harding Challenge. The fund was established through the generosity of the Hardings, and will in the future support bursaries for students from low-income backgrounds, including those at Lucy Cavendish.

All gifts made during LucyGives will help us ensure that:  

  • students can make the most of the extra-curricular opportunities Cambridge has to offer. We will build on the success of Making the Most of Cambridge Fund to date so that students from low-income backgrounds are encouraged and supported to seek out opportunities which complement their academic experience, improve well-being and help them to develop the leadership skills which their future employers require;
  • more scholarships are available to Master’s students from low-income backgrounds who are taking one of the many interdisciplinary courses focused on tackling the global issues facing humanity;
  • the College’s careers support programme helps to close the gaps in career progression between Cambridge students from under-represented groups and their more privileged peers; and
  • our outdoor environment surrounding the College’s new Passivhaus development supports students’ wellbeing and provides spaces which are inclusive and welcoming to all. It will be an outdoor manifestation of Lucy’s core DNA!

Together we are making history. Lucy Cavendish has forged ahead with its pioneering vision, welcoming last autumn the most socio-economically diverse year group of any Cambridge college; 60% are from backgrounds that are either disadvantaged or underrepresented, 86% of our first year UK students were previously at maintained sector (state) schools, and at least one in four are the first in their family to go to university. This year’s intake are also academically exceptional, 73% exceeding the University’s standard entry requirements. No other Cambridge College has ever achieved this profile. 

But this is just the start. Thanks to support received during LucyGives, the College is set to achieve a UK student population which is broadly representative of society by 2025, while increasing numbers of students from under-served communities across the globe. 

Every philanthropy-funded outreach initiative, student support programme, and offer of financial aid enables Lucy Cavendish to continue as the vanguard of change at Cambridge. We will ensure the brightest minds from all backgrounds can access a world-class university education before graduating with the skills and confidence to make a positive impact in society.

During LucyGives we were delighted to welcome Honorary Fellow and crime writer Sophie Hannah, who gave an insightful talk entitled 'Optimism for Beginners' as part of the LucyGives celebrations (recording available here). We also held Lucy’s very first LucyGives Bake Off, LucyGives Open Mic Night ‘Live@Lucy’, as well as a Giving Week Formal Hall, Meet the President and our Virtual Celebration of Lucy’s Benefactors and Legators. Students, staff and Fellows took part in the celebrations via a tombola, ‘Guess the number of sweets in a jar’ competition and the College Collage at the LucyGives Hub in Warburton Hall.

Thank you to everyone who participated, helping to make the LucyGives Giving Week such a great success. If you wanted to contribute but ran out of time, it isn’t too late to give via the site here: