You can’t use them in vending machines or parking meters. You can’t even use them to top up your myki. So what good are five-cent coins?

“We did some research and found there’s $150 million in five-cent pieces in circulation,” YGAP CEO Elliot Costello explains.

The idea behind YGAP’s upcoming 5cent campaign is to collect this spare change and put it to use, reducing poverty in Australia and abroad.

Throughout May, you'll find 5cent collection boxes in your favourite cafes and restaurants around Melbourne. Many are also donating five cents from every sale of an item of their menu.

“We’ve got some great businesses out there that give us five cents for every coffee sold during the month of May, five cents per meal sold,” Costello says. “It’s a wonderful way to support the campaign.”

Over the past three years the 5cent campaign has collected more than 7.9 million coins. This year YGAP aims to hit the five million mark, which will amount to $300,000.

The campaign will support YGAP’s work in South Africa, Kenya and Australia. The organisation’s unique approach seeks out local entrepreneurs in developing communities and works with them to support and build their ideas into self-sustaining businesses.

“Most international development organisations work on a pretty traditional development model, where they come in with a development program and they commit three to five years,” Costello explains.

“Every place we work it’s all about how do we find local leaders with big ideas and enable them.”

If you want to join the campaign as a supporter, check out the 5Cent website, where you can sign up for a collection tin. Otherwise, keep an eye out for 5cent collection tins in all 7-Elevens and Forever New stores plus:

5cent Venues

Feast of Merit
117 Swan Street, Richmond

St ALi
12 Yarra Place, South Melbourne

Il Fornaio
2 Acland Street, St Kilda

La Formaggeria
68–72A Acland St, St Kilda

Last Piece
7/2 Stadium Circuit, Mulgrave

Brighton Schoolhouse
15 St Andrews Street, Brighton

The Banff
29/145 Fitzroy Street, St Kilda

Village Melbourne
557 St Kilda Rd, Melbourne

The Little Ox
452 New Street, Brighton

The Merchants Guild
680 Centre Road, Bentleigh East

St Hotel
54 Fitzroy Street, St Kilda

Saigon Sally
2 Duke Street, Windsor

Hanoi Hannah
180 High Street, Prahran

Tokyo Tina
66A Chapel Street, Windsor