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Community & CSR

At Harneys we see it as our responsibility to act as a caring, forward-looking and responsible participant in the local community. We believe that our collective contributions to the community bring us closer together as an organisation and allow us to invest in the future of the places where we live and work. Our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities are focussed in the BVI and the Cayman Islands where we have our largest offices and where we are able to have the most significant impact.

Our CSR programme is divided into four key areas:

Investing in young people
Promoting arts and culture
Preserving our environment
Helping the most vulnerable

We welcome the opportunity to speak with leaders of charities and community organisations about how Harneys can help you achieve a positive impact on the community in the areas outlined above. For more information about Harneys’ corporate social responsibility programme in the BVI and the Cayman Islands, please contact Susanna Henighan Potter

Investing in young people
Investing in young people
Supporting education and youth programmes is at the heart of Harneys’ CSR activities. We believe that investing in young people is the cornerstone of a strong future.

Francis Lettsome Primary School
Our flagship community education project has been the adoption since 2005 of the Francis Lettsome Primary School, a government primary school in East End, Tortola, BVI. Over the years we have made improvements to the school facilities, purchased playground equipment, sponsored enrichment activities, and volunteered at school events. We also sponsor a Junior Achievement project at the school to encourage entrepreneurship and business education.

Harneys is a stalwart supporter of youth sports in the BVI and we now also support youth sports in the Cayman Islands. We have supported the BVI Olympic Committee and numerous individual sporting associations over the years and in 2012 we were one of just two corporate sponsors of the British Virgin Islands team at the London Olympic Games. We have donated new sails and equipment to the BVI youth sailing team; training equipment to the BVI Athletics Association; and helped make it possible for young athletes and swimmers to attend regional meets.

Legal education
We invest in educational opportunities for our staff and for young people, particularly those from the BVI who wish to enter into the legal profession. We are the only law firm in the BVI to offer a formal training programme for newly-qualified lawyers and we also provide tuition support for staff and summer internships for students.

Harneys is a founding sponsor of the Books for Babies initiative by the BVI Reading Council which aims to provide the parents of all newborns in the BVI with books and guidance on how to nurture language literacy in their babies. We have donated books to school libraries in the BVI and the Cayman Islands and we sponsored a first-of-its-kind summer literacy programme in 2012 for BVI students with trouble reading.

Promoting arts and culture
Promoting arts and culture
Harneys is a long-standing supporter of the Performing Arts Series at H. Lavity Stoutt Community College which for more than 18 years has brought world-class classical, jazz and R&B performers to the British Virgin Islands, while also providing a stage for the BVI’s own gifted musicians.

Harneys look for opportunities to support the local arts and in recent years we have sponsored youth theatre and dance performances which not only provide a source of enrichment for the community but also an outlet for creative expression and development for young people and adults.

We are an annual sponsor of Christmas on Main Street, a street festival featuring holiday entertainment and local cultural performances held in early December in Lower Main Street--the heart of Road Town’s historic district and the location of our headquarters. We also support the BVI's annual August Emancipation Festival.

Preserving the environment
Preserving the environment
In 2009, Harneys added the environment to its CSR activities. We launched Harneys Green, a programme to minimize our own impact on the environment and in 2012 we were among the first cohort of BVI businesses to make a public pledge to adopt more environmentally sustainable practices in our business.

In 2010 we provided funding towards the establishment of a unique glass studio in Cane Garden Bay, Tortola, which serves as a fund-raising arm for Green VI and also as a stepping stone towards the implementation of a recycling programme in the BVI.

Other environmental projects have included the provision of pro bono legal services in support of legislative reform aimed at promoting alternative energy in the BVI; the enrolment of two staff members in a UNESCO-sponsored training in environmental sustainability; and our own internal efforts to reduce energy, paper and water usage which are ongoing.

Helping the most vulnerable
Helping the most vulnerable
Harneys seeks ways to help those in greatest need. For example in 2010 following the earthquake in Haiti the partnership of Harneys and staff members collectively contributed over $25,000 towards rebuilding efforts there. We also make annual contributions to Virgin Islands Search and Rescue, an all-volunteer body which responds to disasters and emergencies on the ocean, and to the Family Support Network, the BVI’s only organisation providing dedicated support to victims of domestic and family violence.