In 2019 Haberman Ilett is proud to have raised over £7,500 for our charity partner Let the Children Hear (previously known as the Ian Hutcheon Clinic for Children), which is dedicated to improving the hearing outcomes of children in developing countries.  The charity was founded in 2011 by the parents of one of our forensic directors Nathan Choudhury, in memory of their friend Ian Hutcheon who worked tirelessly to improve the educational and health prospects of children both in the UK and in developing countries.  Let the Children Hear continues his legacy, by working on prevention and early intervention of childhood hearing loss to aid development of speech and language, social integration and educational achievement.

Looking back on an impressive year of fundraising, we would like to thank everyone who got involved and helped us to support this brilliant cause.  Highlights include:

  • Participating in the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge, which saw 10 Haberman Ilett and Blackrock colleagues racing 5.6km around Battersea Park;
  • The annual Easter Egg Hunt, organised by Rosalind Page and Jacquetta Jackson, which thanks to some fiendish hiding places resulted in a surprising number of Easter eggs being discovered during the move to our new John Adam Street office several months later;
  • A Charity Shoot-Out held at our second annual Five-a-Side Football Tournament, organised by Aaron Bradley and Alex Hewson and involving teams from Haberman Ilett, the wider Blackrock Expert Services Group and a number of law firms;
  • The bonus round of our annual Cryptic Quiz, organised by Lexi Boyes, with six law firms competing against each other for extra points and, more importantly, bragging rights; and
  • Other events throughout the year, including dress-down days and a Christmas Quiz.

In addition, in August 2019 Haberman Ilett alumnus Kevin Davey embarked upon on a mammoth cycle ride from Lands End to Cape Town, via a Let the Children Hear clinic in Uganda.  By the end of 2019, Kevin had clocked up 10,000km and had made it to Ethiopia, via Holland, Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, Albania, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Jordan, Egypt and Sudan, raising an impressive £3,670 for this worthwhile cause.

Let the Children Hear trustee Liz Choudhury told us that “2019 has been a very busy but exciting and pivotal year for the charity.”  Every year it succeeds in reaching around 6,000 children and plans are already underway to increase that number in the new decade; the charity will partner with the Ministry of Health to relocate its audiology and rehabilitation services to a national referral hospital in Kampala.  Let the Children Hear has also been busy applying for funding to facilitate further programme development, with a DFID grant already in place, and the money raised by Haberman Ilett able to strengthen future match-funding applications.  On the ground, the Ugandan team is looking forward to welcoming Kevin and is already planning how to keep him busy during his visit!  Liz and all the trustees of Let the Children Hear “thank everyone at Haberman Ilett for raising a fantastic amount and supporting us again in 2019.”

Many of us were able to get a head-start on our spring cleaning through a Toiletries Amnesty, which helps to alleviate hygiene poverty in the UK and abroad.  This brilliant initiative diverted four large boxes of spare, unwanted and unused toiletries away from landfill (or forgotten corners of our homes) and towards a local centre which supports rough sleepers and vulnerably housed people in central London.

The festive season saw £1,200 raised through our Christmas Raffle, and this plus the proceeds of our Christmas Jumper Day were split between Let the Children Hear and the charity partner of our new colleagues at Blackrock Expert Services Group, CRASH.  This is a great organisation which helps homelessness and hospice charities with construction-related projects, providing unique and practical support to create better places for people to live and work.

We were also delighted to be able to support KidsOut with their Giving Tree initiative, which encourages workplaces to forego the office secret santa in favour of buying gifts for children in local refuge homes.  Over a thousand companies, schools and individuals participated in the 2019 initiative, raising an impressive £40,000 and donating tens of thousands of toys to children all over the country.

We look forward to an equally successful year of fundraising in 2020, when we will be collaborating with our colleagues across the Blackrock Expert Services Group to support Maggie’s.  This wonderful charity supports people with cancer as well as their family and friends, following the ideas about cancer care originally laid out by the charity’s namesake Maggie Keswick Jencks.  Maggie’s Centres, set in the grounds of NHS cancer hospitals, provide a full range of support services – from practical advice about benefits and nutrition, to emotional support, or just a cup of tea.