1 December 2021

Carson McDowell announce a new charity partnership with Belfast Samaritans

December marks the start of Carson McDowell's year-long partnership with Samaritans in Belfast, a charity that works day and night to listen to anyone struggling to cope.

The leading Belfast law firm was keen to focus their latest charity partnership on mental health and chose Belfast Samaritans as their partner following a voting process. Throughout the year, Carson McDowell’s dedicated CSR Committee, supported by the firm’s wider employee group, will implement various fundraising ideas and activities while promoting awareness of mental health.

Every year, Carson McDowell raises money for a chosen local charity that helps people in Northern Ireland. In previous years they have supported charities such as Cancer Fund for Children, PIPS and Child Brain Injury Trust. This year, by partnering with Samaritans, employees at Carson McDowell will have the chance to support the great work they do and learn how to support themselves and their colleagues.

Catherine Carton, Partner and Chair of the firm’s CSR committee, commented on the partnership: "We’re really looking forward to working with Belfast Samaritans over the next year and hope that by raising valuable funds we will ensure that people across Northern Ireland always have someone to talk to when they are struggling to cope. The Belfast branch of Samaritans requires approximately £70k to function and provide their life-saving services annually. We have a whole host of fundraising events in prospect which will allow us to contribute towards those running costs.”

Samaritans’ volunteers are there, day or night, for anyone who is going through a difficult time and needs someone to listen without judgement or pressure. Belfast branch, the oldest Samaritans’ branch in Ireland, has remained open seven days a week, since it opened six decades ago. Last year alone, Belfast volunteers answered more than 32,000 phone calls, replied to just over 2,600 emails and had approximately 290 contacts with callers via a new online chat service being piloted.

Sue Cunningham, the volunteer Director at Belfast Samaritans, said,

"We are delighted to have the support of Carson McDowell. The team has already made a great start to what we predict to be a very successful partnership.”

Funds raised by Carson McDowell throughout the coming year will go to charity partner, Belfast Samaritans, to support their volunteers who answer calls for help from people feeling distressed for many different reasons, including those experiencing suicidal feelings.

Sue added, “The last 18 months have been an extremely challenging time for everyone in Northern Ireland, including Belfast Samaritans. Throughout the pandemic, volunteers have gone beyond expectation to ensure we continue to provide our helpline service just as we have done this past 60 years. As a local charity, we quite simply cannot provide essential services like this without the support of the local community and businesses like Carson McDowell.”

If you are feeling isolated, distressed, anxious, depressed or suicidal, you can contact Samaritans free at any time from any phone on 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org.