A team of North East solicitors have become market stallholders for a day to raise money for an independent regional suicide prevention and education charity.

Staff at Hay & Kilner Law Firm voted to adopt the If U Care Share Foundation as their dedicated charity at the start of the year and have been carrying out a number of regular workplace activities to start bringing money in, including dress down days and bake sales.

After putting out a call across the business for any unwanted items that might be sold on behalf of the charity, the firm’s corporate social responsibility team ran a trial sale in their Newcastle boardroom before taking a stall at the regular weekend Tynemouth Station market before the coronavirus outbreak.

And having raised over £700 from their market endeavours, the team is already planning to take another stall there once it reopens.

Based in Chester-le-Street, the Foundation was set up by Shirley Smith and her husband Dean following the death of their 19 year-old son Daniel, and focuses on prevention, intervention and support of those bereaved by suicide.

They are a local charity who work to prevent suicide, support those who have lost loved ones and promote positive mental health in our community.

Outreach work in schools and other educational establishments around the North East is regularly undertaken, and it also offers a number of training and educational programmes which focus on suicide prevention, mental health and emotional wellbeing.

Fundraising and events manager Dominic McDonough says: “We are delighted to be working with the team at Hay & Kilner who have shown a fantastic commitment to both fundraising and awareness raising. They are an amazing team and we are really looking forward to continuing to work with them over the coming year, making a huge difference in our communities.

“In these uncertain times, we value their support as we continue to support those who are at risk of taking their own life and have lost loved ones.”

Solicitor Sara Malik, who is a member of Hay & Kilner’s corporate social responsibility team, says: “We wanted to do something that would complement our regular fundraising activities in the office, and with several of our staff being regular visitors to Tynemouth Market, we came up with the idea of taking a stall there ourselves.

“We got a great response from the team to our call for items that we could sell at the market and lots of interest from customers on the day, many of whom already knew about If U Care Share’s work and were keen to contribute towards it.

“Charities like the Foundation are going to be more important than ever as we return to normal life and we’re already putting plans together for how we can support its invaluable work in the future.”

For further information on the support, services and advice offered by If U Care Share, visit www.ifucareshare.co.uk