Starfish in the City

Hi Everyone!

I am Nicola King, a third seat trainee currently in the Employment team. My first seat was Real Estate in our Edinburgh office and my second was with the London Corporate team. I am contemplating applying for a secondment for my final seat with one of our clients!

 As I have recently been elected trainee representative of PM Corporate Social Responsibility programme, Starfish, I thought I would take this opportunity to tell you little bit more about our initiatives.  Starfish work with, fund and support several charities and our prime aim is “inspiring young lives”.  Staff can volunteer to undertake activities with the charities, which can range from:

 – Mentoring the unemployed

– Reading to children at schools

– Presenting at universities

– Running CV skills courses

– Supporting theatre workshops and creative projects

Starfish is also involved with providing free legal advice, “pro bono“, work to a number of charities, including Amicus and A4ID.

I am currently involved in a 12 week mentoring scheme for Tomorrow’s People, a charity which helps disadvantaged adults and young people to get and keep a job.  We work on a rotational basis, which makes it easier to fit in around the day job, and therefore I volunteer about once a month.  I attend one of the sessions for two hours to help students with their work and encourage discussion and integration.  These sessions can vary from recognizing skills employers look for in candidates to presenting an interesting topic.  At the end of the 12 weeks a “graduation ceremony” is held that we are invited to.

 

I also help run and recruit volunteers for workshops ELBA, an east London based charity, supports. We have recently held a CV writing skills and building self confidence course at University East London.  In Edinburgh I helped young children with their reading and mathematics and older students to concentrate on their future careers.

The firm also recently launched a 1000km cycle ride to raise money for SOS Children’s Villages, our international chairty partner.  Several employees were tasked with what seemed to be the impossible mission of cycling between each of our UK offices (with the odd ferry and flight in between – we do have an office in Belfast you know!)  On each leg the riders were joined by fellow Partners, staff, clients and contacts from that region.  The event culminated in our London office where the cyclists were greeted with cheers, food and a cold beer.  We managed to raise over £23,000 for the charity which was a tremendous achievement.  There are rumours of repeating the event next year and maybe even extending to our newly opened Paris Office so watch this space!

If you join Pinsent Masons I would thoroughly recommend you getting involved with our Starfish initiatives.  They are both rewarding and challenging and help you meet other colleagues within the firm.  My next blog will be focusing on our re-launch of the Starfish brand at our Fresher’s Fair!

Bye for now.

Nicola