Welcome to our 2021 summary from the Hymans Robertson Foundation. Our impact is delivered through our charity partners. On behalf of the Foundation’s Board, I recognise the hard work and commitment our partners have made throughout the pandemic: supporting minoritized young people and communities. Without them the Foundation cannot deliver against our priority areas: securing financial futures for young people and making a positive change to communities through fundraising and volunteering.
During 2021 we continued to listen and be advised by our charity partners, our stakeholders and like-minded funders, ensuring we prioritised our resources to areas of most need and where we could make real differences to people and communities’ lives. The Board saw the early impact of the introduction of the Foundation Bursary and approved at least a further 2 years (and increased) funding during the year. We also engaged with new charity partners in Birmingham and London during 2021: ensuring that we extended the Bursary’s reach to young people in those cities.
Some of our partners distribute the Bursary to young people directly and the stories from young people have shown the impact that direct funding can have on young people’s lives. Please see our annual report which provides more information on our Bursary and 20/21 impact.
We invite our charity partners to our Board meetings throughout the year. Our Board always benefits from direct engagement with our partners: highlighting areas which are working well and areas of emerging need which could be supported by the Foundation in the future.
In late 2020, our charity partners collectively highlighted the growing and urgent need to support more young people with mental health and wellbeing support. The Board recognised that young people had additional barriers to opportunities resulting from poor mental health and wellbeing and that our own charity partners’ staff needed support and training in this area. At the end of 2021, we were able to appoint a new mental health charity partner to working directly with young people and provide complementary training to charity staff. I look forward to sharing more of this new partnership shortly.
Finally, a big thanks from the Foundation team to the Firm’s volunteers and fundraisers. Our charity network has brought through specialist, active and virtual volunteering opportunities for Hymans Robertson LLP’s staff and, despite an ever-moving horizon with restrictions and lockdowns, volunteers have continued to support local and Foundation charities throughout the year.
As we leave our 5th anniversary year, the Foundation has demonstrated its strong social purpose and impact. The new year lies ahead and given the tumult of 2021 we will continue to be a flexible, thoughtful long-term funding partner: showing agility in our Foundation funding commitments, particularly exploring how and where we can support charity partners build back reserves or contribute to core costs. We are also partnering with an increased number of Foundation charities and I look forward to sharing more news on that in the coming months.