Overall Score: 4 based on 8 data points
Finance: -8
Governance: 9
Support: 3
(no PartB)
Volatile income: -3, Fundraising costs high: -5,
Good trustee age range: +3, Dynamic board: +3, Gender balanced board: +3,
Supporters: +3



To provide sustainable sources of quality education to children living in poor and marginalised communities.
Analysis by Giving is Great


  • There have been no material income shortfalls in recent years
  • The Board appears to be well diversified in terms of age and gender and dynamic in terms of composition

Financial issues to consider:

  • Income has been volatile recently
  • Fundraising costs are extremely high relative to funds raised

How you can help

Established: 23 years
Scottish Charity RegulatorCompanies HouseTwitterFacebookInstagramYouTube
Financial Data
Income & Spending ?
Period ending 31/08/17 31/08/18 31/08/19 31/08/20 31/08/21 31/08/22
Charitable activities
Donations & Legacies £175,025 £169,343 £165,870 £220,203
Other Income £19,644 £15,339
Investment Income £15 £36 £26 £9 £17
Total income £329,566 £368,512 £345,486 £289,728 £341,413 £255,775
Charitable activities spending £237,955 £245,188 £242,543 £162,326 £190,343
Fundraising costs 26% 27% 27% 17% 49%
Other spending
Total spending £336,322 £332,043 £337,927 £314,204 £216,874 £316,548
Surplus/deficit -£6,756 £36,469 £7,559 -£24,476 £124,539 -£60,773
What it does
  • It makes grants, donations or gifts to organisations
  • It carries out activities or services itself
Working in partnership with local organisations, we develop community-owned and operated schools, which provide quality education in a sustainable way.
Who it helps
  • Children or young people
  • The prevention or relief of poverty
  • The advancement of education
  • The advancement of health','the relief of those in need by reason of age, ill-health, disability, financial hardship or other disadvantage
Where it operates
  • UK and overseas, main operating location: Outwith Scotland

Who's supporting them? ?

Donations from Grant Makers ?

We have details on the following significant donations. Multi-year donations are allocated to the years for which they are earmarked.

Specific Donations

Amount When
To be used for
The Shears Foundation
£5,500 06/04/2023
Securing a Sustainable Future for FOCUSSA Primary School.

Data sourced from Donors via 360 Giving

How do they operate?

Schools For Life

Objectives: To provide sustainable sources of quality education to children living in poor and marginalised communities.

Intervention period: Ongoing

Beneficiaries: Children and communities in Tanzania and Kenya

Location: East Africa

Description: COCO's Schools for Life programme seeks to combine six key elements in order to provide quality education. They are shelter, power, water & sanitation, food, sports & recreation and entrepreneurship. Built on these elements, Schools for Life provide a fully-rounded, quality learning environment for children and young people living in marginalised areas.

Small Loans

Objectives: Improve income for families to provide for their children and pay school fees, reducing poverty

Intervention period: 6 months

Beneficiaries: Families and communities in Tanzania and Kenya

Location: East Africa

Description: Small loans are microfinance loans, distributed to members of the community through our partner organisations. The loans are between £20 and £175 and are repaid over six months.

Entrepreneurs use the enhanced income from their businesses to enroll their children in school, as well as to meet the needs of their family. Many also reinvest in their business to make it bigger and better!

The small loans project is fully sustainable. Loans are returned in full and then re-distributed to other entrepreneurs! Through guidance and mentorship our delivery partners are able to ensure that loans are repaid in full, on time and the funds are ready to support another family.

Sustainable Agriculture Training

Objectives: Increase agricultural efficiency of farmers living in poor, remote communities, so they can afford to feed their children, access healthcare, and send their children to school.

Intervention period: 1 year

Beneficiaries: Farmers and families in remote communities in Tanzania and Kenya

Location: East Africa

Description: We work with our partners in East Africa to provide Sustainable Agriculture Training to farmers living in poor, remote communities. Community members are trained in farming techniques which increase agricultural efficiency using naturally available, environmentally friendly resources. On average, individuals who receive training are able to increase their income by 284%! This means parents can afford to feed their children, access healthcare, and send their children to school.

As well as training individuals, our local partners use the Sustainable Agriculture techniques at Schools for Life projects. This enables students to learn about the techniques and seek employment in the agriculture sector after they finish their studies, as well as providing healthy, nutritious meals for the whole school.

Who works here?

    Appointed: 2004
Lucy is our CEO and has worked at COCO since 2004. She is passionate about international relations, development, poverty alleviation and commitment to accountability. Lucy is a board member for Children North East and is an advocate for networking, skill sharing, encouraging leadership and increasing aid effectiveness. Lucy regularly takes part in activities for COCO like trekking Kilimanjaro, running the Great North Run, and cycling in Maasai ....more
    Partnerships Manager
    Appointed: June 2016
Jess is COCO’s Partnerships Manager. Jess started volunteering for COCO in 2013 and was excited to be offered the chance of becoming a member of staff in June 2016. She works closely with our partners in East Africa to monitor and evaluate programmes. She has also taken part in a number of fundraising events for COCO, including climbing Kilimanjaro, cycling across Kenya, and a bit closer to home taking on Walk the Wall and the Great North Run.
    Appointed: October 2018
Rosie joined the COCO team as Administration Assistant in October 2018, becoming the Administrator in 2020. A passionate advocate of the importance of education, Rosie spent five years teaching Modern Foreign Languages in various schools across the North East. As well as loving languages and literature, Rosie also enjoys the outdoors and is a keen gardener. She can often be found in her allotment plot, growing fruit and vegetables with varying ....more
    Fundraising Officer
    Appointed: October 2021
Freya is the Fundraising Officer for COCO, joining the team in October 2021. She leapt straight into the deep end and organised a tremendously successful COCO Ball in November 2021, and is now looking forward to the exciting events on the COCO Calendar in the future!
    MEAL Officer
    Appointed: December 2021
Rebecca is COCO’s Meal Officer. Rebecca started volunteering for COCO in May 2019 in the build up to our Golf Day, and was incredibly excited to be offered the chance to become a member of the COCO team in December 2021. She has volunteered within both overseas and UK initiatives; supporting educational, female empowerment, and orphanage projects in India and Ghana, as well as helping to organise the UK’s first Local Conference of Youth ....more

How is it governed?

Directors (8)
Current Directors appointed
Gender Split

Age Range of Directors: 36-63
  • JUMA, Ida
    Appointed: 2023
    Occupation: Programme Specialist
Legal constitution
  • Charity registered in Scotland on 09/08/2000, number: SC030428
  • Registered at Companies House on 09/08/2000, number: SC209819
Main office

, EH14 7DL


The Charity's objects ('Objects') are wholly charitable (the word charitable having the meaning ascribed to it for the purposes of the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005 and section 505 of the income and corporation Taxes Act 1988 or any statutory amendment or re-enactment thereof) and are:- a) The relief of suffering and distress of children throughout the world in areas stricken by poverty, natural disaster or war by providing support, facilities, equipment, supplies or funds. and b) The advancement of education by providing educational facilities or equipment, funds or supplies for the benefit of children in such areas.

Data Sources

Scottish Charity Regulator
360 Giving

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