The Matheson Giving Programme – helping the next generation achieve their full potential
Developing talent is a core value of Matheson. It is the backbone of our firm and the service we provide to our clients.
Our commitment to developing talent, however, extends beyond the development of those who work within the firm.
Instead, it is our desire to help create and foster a spirit of developing talent and achievement within Ireland, where every Irish child – regardless of background or demographic group – is assisted to achieve their full potential.
In line with this, the ‘Matheson Giving Programme’ works with a number of carefully chosen organisations, each of which is focused on helping Irish children to fulfil their potential.
These range from charities that aim to provide basic protection and physical and mental safety for children, to advocacy for the needs of Irish children, to organisations which help high academic achievers fulfil their full potential.
While our association with these organisations helps to provide funding and monetary support, the aim of the Matheson Giving Programme is far more than the provision of donations to a chosen group of charities.
Rather, the programme is focused on helping our people help other people, with volunteers from the firm building relationships with the chosen organisations, creating a spirit of active engagement between Matheson and the various charities involved.
The organisations involved in the Matheson Giving Programme are:
The Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC)
The ISPCC is Ireland’s oldest charity, dedicated to the safety and well-being of all children. Since its establishment in 1889, the ISPCC has become synonymous with the protection of Irish children.
The primary focus of the ISPCC lies with the advocacy for the prevention of cruelty and injustices to children, with direct access services including Childline, Teenfocus, Childfocus, Leanbh and the Schools Outreach Programme. They rely heavily on voluntary income to maintain existing services.
We have supported the ISPCC since 2005. In April 2006, the firm began funding part of the ISPCC's "4Me" service, which works to prevent early school leaving through engagement of children and young people on a variety of individual, mentoring and activity-based programmes. This service is open to young people aged between 13 and 18 years of age.
The firm funds the ISPCC worker appointed in late April 2006 to work with young people in the Ringsend/Pearse St/Docklands communities in which our Dublin office is based. This is the first time an ISPCC worker has been appointed to provide this valuable service to the inner city community.
This support has made a significant contribution to the ISPCC's work with children in the Dublin area in particular, making it possible for the charity to provide one-to-one therapeutic support to troubled teenagers, as well as mentor support for their parents.
In 2010, one of the partners of Matheson, Turlough Galvin, was appointed to the Board of Directors of the ISPCC.
The Centre for Talented Youth in Ireland (CTYI)
The CTYI was developed in response to the need for extra support for Ireland’s most gifted young people, many of whom were not receiving the assistance they needed to stay integrated and interested in the school system.
The CTYI aims to allow all talented students to reach their potential, both academically and socially, by providing relevant and interesting challenges based on ability and interest rather than age.
This includes the Centre for Academic Achievement (CAA) programme, which since being founded in 2006, has allowed over 900 primary school students, all from socio-economically disadvantaged areas of Dublin, to attend special after-school classes at Dublin City University.
More generally, the CTYI gives primary and secondary school students the opportunity to develop their intellectual talents further.
Our support is focused on three specific projects which will help CTYI to widen its access to gifted children all over Ireland, giving them an opportunity (which might otherwise be unavailable) to fulfil their academic potential.
The three projects are: CTYI Talent Search, CTYI Summer Programme, and the Centre for Academic Achievement (CAA).
In 2010, one of the partners of Matheson, Turlough Galvin, was appointed as a member of the CTYI Advisory Board.
The National Gallery of Ireland Children’s Education Programme
The National Gallery of Ireland houses the Irish national collection of Irish and European art. It was founded in 1854 and is located in the centre of Dublin. The Gallery has an extensive, representative collection of Irish painting and is also notable for its Italian Baroque and Dutch masters painting. Entry to the gallery is free.
The National Gallery of Ireland Children’s Education Programme combines education, the arts and the important family unit.
It provides an opportunity for adults and children to enjoy the excitement of learning about the arts through a wide range of free Gallery-based activities exploring storytelling, music, art, poetry and drama.
Our support of the Gallery’s Children’s and Families’ Activities Programme enables them to offer facilities, materials and workshops which teach children how to appreciate art and encourage their creative skills in a nurturing, family environment.
Junior Achievement Ireland
Since 2005, we have been a supporter of Junior Achievement Ireland. Junior Achievement Ireland encourages young people to remain in education and teaches them the skills they need to succeed in a changing world. It is aiming to create a culture of enterprise within the education system and is helping young people prepare for the world of work, giving them skills in communications and preparing for interviews. Junior Achievement is part of a worldwide organisation reaching out to 9.3 million young people each year. It was established in Ireland in 1995 and since then has built up a strong demand from schools throughout the country and created successful partnerships with over 150 leading organisations.
In particular, volunteers from Matheson help assist school children – some of whom have little understanding of working life and the opportunities that exist – to gain a greater knowledge of the business world, while also encouraging them to stay in school. In doing so, the Junior Achievement programmes help to provide these children with role models from the world of work.
The Little Museum of Dublin
The Little Museum of Dublin tells the story of Dublin city and first opened its doors in October 2011. The museum’s mission is to promote education in Dublin by developing and conserving a museum collection for Dublin that speaks to the city’s character and history.
In 2012, Matheson began supporting the museum’s Children’s Education Programme, titled ‘I love Dublin’. This unique programme aims to promote a greater awareness of Dublin’s rich heritage and will give school-children the opportunity to learn about the past and present of their capital city. The ‘I love Dublin’ classes include interviews with older Dubliners to learn about what it was like to grow up in the city in years gone by.
The Festival of Curiosity
We are proud to be a founding partner of the Festival of Curiosity, a new three-day science event that was launched in Dublin in July 2013. The festival builds on the success of Dublin City of Science 2012 in promoting Ireland's scientific achievements and encouraging people of all ages to follow their scientific curiosity, through a combination of cultural events, a ‘Curiosity Carnival’, public conferences and lectures.
The Festival of Curiosity also hosts innovative workshops through an “artist in residency” programme where science teachers, scientists and members of the public will join forces to create a curious Dublin by collaborating on new ways of engaging people with science.
Belvedere College S.J
Belvedere College S.J. was established over 180 years ago and helps students from diverse social and economic backgrounds achieve their academic potential. The college prides itself on helping each student to explore their unique talents and gifts and making them feel part of a community that recognises and celebrates achievement in many different fields.
As part of the Matheson Giving Programme, we are proud to support the Belvedere Mace Debating Competition and its participation in the Oxford and Cambridge Union International Competitions. The process of debate offers profound and lasting benefits for the students who take part. With its emphasis on critical thinking, effective communication, independent research and teamwork, debate teaches skills that serve students well in school and well into their chosen careers.
The competition is open to students from first to third year coming from various secondary schools from all four provinces of Ireland.
We also continue to support charities and organisations that have an established relationship with the firm, including –
Pearse Rangers FC - a local football club dedicated to providing schoolboy football to the boys and girls of the Pearse Street locality
The Emer Casey Foundation - dedicated to providing funding to secure the best independent research to detect the early signs of Uterine/Ovarian cancer
Barnardos - dedicated to protecting children and assisting their emotional and academic development
Barretstown - Barretstown is a specially-designed camp that provides therapeutic recreation programmes for children with serious illnesses, and their families.
The Calcutta Run - a Law Society of Ireland event that raises funding for charities that aim to keep children off the streets in developing countries
Free Legal Aid Centres - FLAC is an independent human rights organisation dedicated to the realisation of equal access to justice for all
The Bar Council Voluntary Assistance Scheme - a scheme administered by the Bar Council of Ireland where lawyers provide services directly to non-government organisations working with members of the community who cannot afford legal services