05 June 2019

Burges Salmon is keen to be a Responsible Business making a positive difference to the community in which we operate. Social Mobility is a key part of our Community Engagement Programme as we feel passionate that young people are the future and we want Bristol as a city to go from strength to strength. Our school partnership with Fairfield High School has provided this opportunity for our people to apply their expertise, legal and business skills in a different setting.

As part of this partnership Jeremy Benson, Director in our Real Estate team, was appointed to Local Governing Board at Fairfield High School in September 2016. Jeremy says 'have always been inspired by the work Burges Salmon does in this area – I was involved with 'Reading Buddies' at a primary school for a number of years but was looking for a fresh challenge. As a Governor my role is to ‘support and challenge’ school leadership in achieving school improvement and I have found the skills I have developed as a lawyer really help here. I think these really add value to the Local Governing Board and I have seen points I have raised directly influence school policy and practices. I am also link Governor for Employability and Careers and having a connection to both the school and Burges Salmon helps to identify opportunities and new initiatives for the partnership. It is clear to me from discussions with the Head of School how much of a difference the work they do with Burges Salmon makes to their students’ progress'.

One of many of the highlights of our Partnership with Fairfield High school was the Community Apprentice challenge, in collaboration with Envision. A group of year 10 Fairfield students 'Team Re-gen', won this city wide event in 2017/18 beating teams mainly comprised of sixth formers. In addition to this being a fantastic result these students gained many benefits from their involvement in the challenge The team was selected by Fairfield from their disadvantaged student cohort who had in previous years struggled to secure work experience places (which research shows has a large impact on longer term employability prospects). Those students competing in the challenge increased their confidence of engaging with employers and the workplace and all successfully secured work experience at the end of Year 10.

We have also connected clients with our school engagement programmes with Fairfield High School on numerous occasions over the past three years. This kind of collaboration can benefit all parties involved - for example, at Burges Salmon we benefit by working with businesses which help us to build and maintain our network whilst doing something positive for others.

Jeremy Benson

Corporate responsibility

Our corporate responsibility programme is an intrinsic part of our business. We focus on activities where we can make a real difference in our local community.
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