The more that Bird & Bird has grown locally and internationally, the more diverse a business we’ve become. We aim to be inclusive in the way we work and conscious of our impact on the environment. It’s also part of our nature to give something back to the wider community.
Lawyers who work for Bird & Bird have a good understanding of the wider world. They’re people with an interest in life beyond our firm and believe in making a positive contribution.
It’s a philosophy we embrace as a firm too. Bird & Bird has a genuine commitment to acting as a responsible employer. To demonstrate this commitment, all staff and partners are entitled to take one day per year for volunteering activities.
Our corporate responsibility initiatives fall under three broad areas: our people, our community and the environment.
We strive to create and maintain an inclusive work environment in which all of our people are seen as individuals and where they are each supported and encouraged to achieve, regardless of personal characteristics. We encourage everyone to develop their interests and realise their full potential.
In 2009, we launched our Bird & Bird Bursary programme, which aims to address the financial hurdle that often deters bright young people from socially deprived areas of the country from attending university. Our trainees are encouraged to get involved with this initiative by acting as mentors to our bursary students, guiding them through university and offering career advice and support.
In 2012, we launched our Pioneer programme targeted at sixth form students, which provides insight, inspiration and information about careers in the legal profession and wider business world. Our trainees are heavily involved with all aspects of this programme, from assisting with the selection of Pioneer candidates to hosting workshops and buddying our Pioneer students during their work experience week with us.
We are passionate about making a difference. That’s why you’ll have the opportunity to use your skills and expertise for the good of wider society, wherever you are in the world. You might choose to take part in voluntary work or fundraising for our nominated charity, or offer your services on a pro-bono basis for a good cause. We have included details of a selection of our initiatives below.
For the last five years we have participated in the Lawyers in Schools programme, through which our partners, associates and trainees teach the legal aspects of a citizenship curriculum to year 10 students.
Our London office has selected Alzheimer’s Society as its charity of choice for 2016-2018. Dementia can happen to anyone and there’s currently no cure. There are 850,000 people with dementia in the UK and the number is set to rise to 1 million by 2021. At Alzheimer’s Society, they believe passionately that life doesn’t end when dementia begins. They are there for anyone affected by dementia, and they do everything they can to keep people with dementia connected to their lives and the people who matter most. All London office wide fundraising goes to our Charity Partner.
We have a policy of providing free legal expertise to deserving causes. Our trainees are encouraged to participate in pro bono work to support their personal and professional development. Pro bono work not only enables our trainees to make a difference, but also provides them with an opportunity to manage their own case loads and gain key skills that they will need later in their careers. We take a broad approach to pro bono work in that it is largely guided by the individual interests of our lawyers. We send lawyers on a rotational basis to volunteer at legal advice centres including the University of the Arts Own-It Advice Clinic and an advice centre in South Westminster.
We are also committed to minimising the impact of our business on the environment through responsible management of our building.
Areas that we look at include:
- Energy management
- Waste and recycling
- Office Environment