Henry Davis York is committed to making a responsible and meaningful contribution to the communities within which we operate. Reinforcing our pro bono commitment, much of our volunteering, fund raising and in kind support is focused in areas where we direct our pro bono activities. We focus in a few core areas strengthens the positive impact of our efforts in those areas, including:
Youth at risk
- Whitelion bailout: HDY lawyers annually participate in the Whitelion Bailout, raising funds for the Whitelion youth at risk program while experiencing overnight lock up in Yasmar Facility, a former Juvenile Detention Centre.
- Streetwork: HDY annually donates to Streetwork, a charity which aims to help teens troubled by destructive influences and behaviour to turn their lives around through early intervention and one on one mentoring.
- LEAPS: HDY participates in the Learning and Encouraging Promising Students (LEAPS) program in partnership with Doonside Technology High School and the Department of Education and Training. The program provides approximately 25 high school students each year with mentoring by young HDY lawyers. Each HDY participant annually contributes a minimum of 25 hours per year to the program.
- Race for Change: HDY cycling enthusiasts don their lycra to compete in the Benevolent Society Race for Change charity cycling event, and raise funds in the process. The Race supports the Benevolent Society sponsored youth services programmes in Sydney: "The Shack" and Claymore Kids Action Network (CKAN Do). These programmes are community based and targeted to empower vulnerable youth break the cycle of disadvantage.
- HPLS: In further support of the vulnerable clients we see at the Homeless Persons Legal Service clinics, HDY donates a number of backpacks to the HPLS for distribution to clients.
- Cana Enterprise: HDY supports the Cana Enterprise, an initiative grown out of Cana Farm, a community farm at Orchard Hills that supports disadvantaged adults through community, education and employment opportunities. Cana Farm is itself an initiative of Cana Communities which has provided accommodation and a place of belonging for homeless men and women (particularly following lengthy periods in addiction and incarceration) for over 40 years.
Asylum seekers and refugees
- Opportunity: HDY is a 'trailblazer' participant in the Career Seekers program, being the first law firm to take a mid-career intern who is presently seeking refugee status in Australia. CareerSeekers is non-profit social enterprise that works with leading organisations to create employment opportunities for asylum seekers and refugees who aspire to obtain professional employment.
HDY was also the first law firm in NSW to formally announce its support for the NSW Government's Refugee Resettlement Initiative and its goal of assisting the successful longer term settlement of refugees in the NSW community.
- Pro bono legal services: In addition to the Legal Help for Refugees Clinic which HDY operates in partnership with RACS, HDY has provided financial support to RACS in the form of charitable donations, contribution to the funds required to engaged interpreters who are essential to this program, and hosting fundraising events, such as the recent 'Noodle Night'.
HDY also provided the legal services that enabled CareerSeekers to register as a charity with DGR status.