Our responsive charity helps solicitors and their dependents return to being self-sustaining
It’s good to talk, to get things off our chest. We feel better after sharing a problem. So, whether it’s a professional or a personal concern, it helps to have somebody there who will listen.
Listening to (and talking with) solicitors about their personal struggles is what we do best at The Solicitors’ Charity. We’re on a mission to keep supporting solicitors across England and Wales during times of need and crisis – it’s something we’ve been doing well since 1858.
Obviously, times and circumstances have changed over the decades with new challenges now impacting solicitors’ lives – and that’s where the Solicitors’ Charity specialist caseworkers and our partners can give their up-to-date expertise and advice to those facing practical, emotional or financial difficulties.
I’d like to focus on what The Solicitors’ Charity is doing to make a real positive difference to legal professionals during tough times – and extend our invitation to anybody who is struggling to get in touch.
By talking to us, you can get your life back on track.
We can help ease worries brought about by job loss, debt, bereavement, emotional and physical health issues, relationship breakdowns, illness, injuries and much more.
Our team of expert caseworkers give confidential and non-judgmental support. They can arrange help for you including advice and one-off financial awards to assist with your journey back to becoming self-sustaining or, where it’s the best approach, through regular awards to help with day-to-day living costs.
Our charity can provide ‘back to work’ awards to help with things like the cost of practising certificates, essential clothing and equipment, or interview travel expenses – and we support career transition coaching.
As you’ll realise, it’s not just direct support that we offer. We work with partners to provide the right support at the right time. For instance, we partner with LawCare, the mental wellbeing charity for the legal community. LawCare offers solicitors a free, confidential support service. We can put you directly in touch with them to access their helpline and emails and web chat support, all provided in confidence by trained staff who have first-hand experience of working in the law.
The need for the right partnerships became even more evident during the 2020 pandemic. The Solicitors’ Charity experienced a 203 per cent increase in new solicitors it supported that year alone. We set up a personal hardship fund at the start of the coronavirus outbreak and disbursed a total of £1,109,507 in support of 399 people during the year.
By listening to solicitors and learning more about their struggles and concerns through research during the pandemic, the charity gained a clearer insight into what is required to maximise its effectiveness in the future.
Many solicitors told us they felt overworked and furlough brought extra stress. They suffered social isolation due to home working and lockdown, the worry of uncertain finances, home-schooling and extra pressures on relationships.
We continue to deepen our understanding of the profession’s needs, whether through supporting research projects, such as LawCare’s recent Life in the Law report, or through conversations with our own reference panel of solicitors from around the country.
In response to what we are learning, we have begun a process of widening the kind of support we offer, to increase the number of partners we work with and bring new benefits to those in need.
Those we help welcome the mental health support, money management, debt or employment advice, personalised career coaching, retraining funds, peer support and help with day-to-day living costs that they can access through the charity.