Ropes & Gray does not take its social responsibility lightly and is always striving to go above and beyond in support of its charitable causes. We have spent decades forming partnerships, providing pro-bono legal advice and fundraising for charities, but sometimes you need to go further to take that partnership to a new level.

To rise to this challenge, during the pandemic, Ropes & Gray has given its associates the opportunity to spend 12 months volunteering with a charity of their choice. Associates chosen for the ‘Fellowship’ programme have been provided with funding to support themselves and an offer to return to the firm at the end of the 12 months.

William Moore, an associate in our Privacy, Data Protection and Cybersecurity team in London, was selected last year to undertake a Fellowship with the mental health charity, Lambeth & Southwark Mind.

William is now over halfway through his Fellowship and he is going from strength to strength. From discussions with the charity’s CEO, Alastair Smith-Agbaje, he has managed to make a significant impact at the charity, well beyond providing legal advice. We have heard how he has not shied away from the tougher frontline tasks, often working on the helplines to assist those suffering a mental health crisis. In addition, William has been working with the local MP to provide the charity’s response to the UK Government’s White Paper on the Mental Health Act reform.

Inspired by the impact William is having with the charity, Ropes & Gray has also provided additional support to Lambeth & Southwark Mind with a charitable donation and by assisting the development of their human resources, IT and client management systems, as well as the recruitment of additional trustees.

William’s efforts have shown us is that it is possible to take the law firm / charity partnership to a whole new level. We are thrilled that the budding partnership between Ropes & Gray and Lambeth & Southwark Mind is going from strength-to-strength, and we will continue to think of innovative ways of supporting our chosen charities at a time when they have never been needed more.