Press release

Linklaters ‘Learn for Work’ programme in Hackney is the latest Big Society Award Winner

Children's Minister presents Linklaters with Big Society Award for 'Learn for Work' programme.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


Children’s Minister Tim Loughton today visited Clapton Girls’ Academy in Hackney  to present Linklaters  with the Prime Minister’s Big Society Award for its ‘Learn for Work’ programme. Through the programme employees of the law firm work with children at local schools to help develop the aspirations, skills and experience they need to fulfil their potential.

Learn for Work is an international scheme which Linklaters runs in 16 countries working with over 7,500 children in 80 schools.  In Hackney the firm is now running its second three-year scheme, with each scheme being backed by £1 million in funding.  Every year over 400 staff give 3,500 hours of their time to support 2,500 young people in more than 50 schools.  Linklaters staff benefit from the scheme as  it offers them the chance to share their skills and inspire the next generation; over 75% of the firm’s volunteers have greater job satisfaction after taking part in the scheme and 20 have gone on to become school governors.

Delivered in partnership with the Local Authority the programme includes a reading and writing challenge and debating competition for all primary schools in the borough.  Linklaters ensures that the activities are inspirational as well as educational by bringing authors, illustrators and poets into the schools taking part. 

At secondary level the firm has a partnership with Clapton Girls’ Academy, which supports students through their school career to achieve their goals when they leave.  This includes business skills training, interview practice, careers events and work experience, and can even include support with university entry or an entry-level apprenticeship with the firm. 

Congratulating Linklaters on the award, the Prime Minister said:

Learn for Work is an impressive programme which has had a direct impact on the future of hundreds of young people in Hackney.  Its success is a testament to the support the scheme has at all levels in Linklaters and it’s fantastic that staff are encouraged to give up time from their working day to help local students reach their full potential when they leave school.  I hope they will continue to build links with their local community and that the young people involved will continue to benefit from this valuable support throughout their careers.

Presenting the award, Children’s Minister Tim Loughton said:

I am delighted to present Linklaters LLP with their Big Society Award on behalf of the Prime Minister.  Thanks to significant personal and financial investment, Linklaters ‘Learn for Work’ programme is helping to give students at Clapton Girls’ Academy the confidence and experience they need to make a big impact in the world of work.

Accepting the award, Robert Elliott, Chairman and Senior Partner at Linklaters said:

In recent years, we have seen how Hackney students have excelled in their education. We believe that the more subtle skills developed by our Learn for Work programme complements this success and will help them stand out when they progress to further study, training or the world of work. On behalf of our hundreds of volunteers, we are thrilled that this scheme has been commended by the Prime Minister and thank both him and Tim Loughton for this recognition.

Notes to Editors

  • Linklaters LLP is a leading global law firm, supporting clients in achieving their strategies wherever they do business. We use our expertise and resources to help clients pursue opportunities and manage risk across emerging and developed markets around the world
  • Corporate responsibility is central to Linklaters’ thinking. The firm is determined to achieve its strategic business goals by leading in a way that is consistent with its values. These values should be integral to the relationships the firm builds with its clients, people and the wider global community. To access Linklaters’ most recent report on corporate responsibility, click here
  • Learn for Work aims to inspire young people through activities include debating, interview experience and advocacy training as well as work experience, careers events and enterprise projects. All aim to raise the skills, aspirations and experience of those nearest to our offices but who are, in many ways, also the furthest away.
Published 6 March 2012