(July 16, 2012, Weil News)
The Dallas office of international law firm Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP announced today that it is embarking on an ambitious philanthropic program inspired by the 2000 book, “Pay it Forward,” written by Catherine Ryan Hyde. The program is the expansion of an initiative that was launched by the firm’s New York office in 2011, which succeeded in raising more than $175,000 for New York City-area charities. Weil offices in Boston, Houston, London and Washington, DC are also participating this year in the “Pay it Forward” program.
Weil’s “Pay it Forward” program is meant to tap into the creative, entrepreneurial talents of the firm’s employees, with the goal of extending the reach of the firm’s overall philanthropic endeavors. Each project begins with $1,000 in seed money donated from the firm and allocated to internal teams that submitted proposals to support a local charity. Unlike many corporate philanthropic efforts that focus on nationally known charities, Weil’s program seeks to support organizations that are typically underfunded and primarily serve the local community. The $1,000 seed money is then leveraged through a “pay it forward” action plan developed by each team, with a goal of multiplying the seed money exponentially or providing a gift of lasting value.
“Weil’s ‘Pay it Forward’ program has been tremendously successful for our New York office, and we’re looking forward to replicating that success here in Dallas,” said Glenn West, managing partner of Weil’s Dallas office. “Our office prides itself on our pro bono
causes and the ability to really ‘do everything bigger in Texas,’ so I look forward to seeing what creative projects these teams generate. I know our attorneys and staff are very excited to turn the seed money into something more for these deserving community organizations.”
The Dallas office’s “Pay it Forward” program is supporting three separate project teams, who each submitted proposals to implement projects from now through September that will benefit three local community groups. Each team will create a video diary of its activities and will host various events throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex in order to leverage the $1,000 seed money into a larger amount.
The project teams’ charities are as follows:
Forney Youth Baseball Association Challenger’s League
creates opportunities for school-aged boys and girls with physical and mental challenges to enjoy playing baseball with their peers. The project aims to raise funds to ensure all 30 children who wish to participate can join the league. The team is planning a number of baseball-themed fundraisers.
Kritters Looking for Homes
is an animal-rescue organization for a wide range of domestic animals beyond just dogs and cats. This project aims to raise money for the care and treatment of the animals waiting for forever homes. The team plans to host a “Cooking for Kritters” food fundraising event.
The Vogel Alcove
, which is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, much like Weil’s Dallas office, provides free, quality, child development services for homeless children ages 6 months to 5 years. The project team plans to hold a dodge ball tournament bringing together Weil attorneys and staff members with clients and other professionals. The goal is to turn this into a yearly fundraising event.