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Corporate Responsibility

A&O doubles its fundraising target for global charity partner War Child to GBP1 million

12 June 2017

Thanks to the generosity of people right across the business, we have already succeeded in reaching our GBP500,000 target for War Child, which will fully fund the Rescue Childhood centre in the Emirati Camp in Jordan.

War Child, an international charity that works to protect, educate and stand up for the rights of children caught up in war, was selected as A&O’s global charity partner through a staff vote in November 2016. Our goal was to raise enough money to fund the Rescue Childhood project, as well as provide significant pro bono, skills-based volunteering and in-kind support to the charity as a whole.

There has been an unprecedented level of support for the partnership so far, with 41 of our offices having taken part in fundraising to help us reach our target. Nine pro bono projects are up and running already, with more planned over the course of the partnership.

The Rescue Childhood centre will open its doors in September to deliver psychosocial support, education and creative therapy for 2,160 Syrian children, as well as supporting nearly 200 parents and caregivers struggling to cope with their own difficult experiences.

Our Managing Partner, Andrew Ballheimer, visited Jordan in March this year. You can watch the video here.  

There is a wide range of incredibly valuable activities that the firm would support with the extra funding, enabling War Child to help even more children who are trying to rebuild their lives after the devastating effects of war.

By providing flexible funding we can also support War Child’s response to emergency situations as they arise – without red tape or waiting for the outcome of grant applications. With this income, War Child can act quickly to help children like Zariya.


Zariya was [nine years old] when ISIS took over her home city of Mosul. She was taken out of school and lost all her friends too as they fled the area. Along with her young brother and older sister, who has Downs Syndrome, Zariya spent two years terrified to leave the house. Then ISIS came to her home.

"Two ISIS members reached our farm and tried to hide. So when bombers came, they thought our house was ISIS as well so they bombed it. The house was completely destroyed by the bombs.”

Zariya was buried under the rubble for 15 minutes but, despite burns and scratches, amazingly the whole family survived.  Now they are at the refugee camp, however, they face new challenges. Zariya’s father is still being admitted through the camp process so is not with them yet, bringing further trauma to the family. Zariya cries as soon as she starts to talk about her father.

"Before the crisis, we were doing well,” she says. “But now the children don't listen to me. They don't even listen to their grandfather, or anyone at home. They always shout and are aggressive."

At the camp, Zariya had withdrawn and stopped playing with other children, but she is now working with Bashar, an education facilitator at War Child's Temporary Learning Space.

“I love Bashar because she takes care of me and she worries about me. She makes sure I’m not alone. And she always walks with me to class.”

Since going to War Child’s Learning Space, Zariya has now started attending school in the morning. To find out more about how War Child invests donations, visit:

Photo credit: James Marcus Haney.

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Key people

Mark Mansell
Mark Mansell
United Kingdom
Telephone icon+44 20 3088 3804
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Annelies van der Pauw
Annelies van der Pauw
Telephone icon+31 20 674 1556
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Related links

A&O's global charity partnership


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