International law firm CMS has put its support behind over 70 charitable and community organisations as part of its newly launched CMS Social Impact Fund.
Founded this year, the CMS Social Impact Fund empowers CMS people across its UK LLP offices to support community projects around the world that contribute to the UN Global Sustainable Development Goals – a set of 17 goals for government, business and individuals that address the greatest challenges of our time. The Fund's aim is to support organisations that make a positive social impact in communities where CMS staff live and work, focusing on three themes from the UN's Goals:
- Climate Action: making a positive environmental impact in the community e.g. supporting community gardens, habitat protection and environmental projects.
- Reduced Inequalities: creating equality and prosperity for all e.g. supporting food banks, homeless centres and refugee projects.
- Peace, Justice, Strong Institutions and the Rule of Law: promoting peaceful and inclusive societies e.g. supporting legal advice centres, youth inclusion projects and public legal education.
Grants have been awarded to organisations located in over 20 cities and seven countries around the world. When selecting organisations, the firm specifically looked for projects in which CMS staff are involved or could be involved in the future, with grants ranging from £500 to £5,000.
Penelope Warne, The Senior Partner at CMS, comments: “We are proud to be supporting these wonderful organisations whose work and efforts are making a real difference to our communities. Our ambition is to be a leader in social purpose and this is just one example of how the firm is supporting and encouraging this commitment and contributing to the UN’s goals. We have bold ambitions to grow the CMS Social Impact Fund and empower our people to make a positive difference in the communities we live and work in, both locally and globally.”
Recipients of the grants include:
- Aberdeenshire North Foodbank, who support people in food poverty and crisis. We are helping to fund a kitchen garden, which will provide fresh fruit and vegetables for the local community as well as training and placement opportunities for people to learn new skills.
- The European Law Students Association in Poland, who are organising a Climate Change conference to educate and power law students.
- The Girl’s Network in Manchester, which works to break the cycle of disadvantage and inequality that girls from low income communities face. Our grant will help fund a mentoring programme for 11 young women.
- Launchpad Reading, who provide people with a history of homelessness access to a range of opportunities that help them move towards employment.
- Letokruh, z.ú. in Prague, who support elderly and isolated people in the community through a companionship programme.
- Nadace Via in Prague, who provide grants to local charities and community organisations. Funding will be going to a number of local projects focused on environmental and biodiversity issues and interventions.
- River Bank Primary School in Luton, whose pupils are particularly economically disadvantaged. CMS is helping to fund an accessible multi-purpose sensory garden.
- Social Health Growth in Singapore, supporting vulnerable women through education and empowerment programmes.
- Spitalfields City Farm in London, with funds going towards installing a new eco water system at the farm, helping to make the farm itself more sustainable as well as educating the local community on the importance of water conservation.
- Support Through the Courts in Sheffield, who provide emotional and procedural assistance to litigants in person in the family and civil courts.
- Világszép Alapítvány in Budapest, who support vulnerable children in state care through a children’s centre and programmes such as mentoring.
CMS is committed to managing the impact it has on the environment and was the first law firm globally to announce and set Science Based Targets to measure its carbon reduction progress. Over several years, CMS in the UK has submitted to CDP for annual review of its progress towards reducing the Scope 1, 2 and 3 impacts on the environment. In the latest round, CMS received an A- in recognition of its continuous efforts to tackle climate change issues as part of its comprehensive Climate Action and Sustainability programme.