In the one hundred years since C.E Callan & Co. Solicitors first opened its door the firm and has maintained a strong sense of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Today Callan Tansey Solicitors LLP continues that tradition. We actively support and encourage our team to work in a voluntary capacity with organisations in their local communities and with causes close to their hearts. Here our David O’Malley outlines some of the organisations he works with in Ballina, and the benefits he has gained from his involvement.

When did you start getting involved with voluntary organisations?

Growing up in Ballina I was always involved in various sports clubs, it was all part of life then, meeting your friends at training and going to matches. In Transition Year I began to work on fundraising for various charities. This was my first experience of fundraising and there was a great sense of accomplishment in setting a target, and working to achieve it.

What organisations are your currently involved with?

At the moment I am Chairperson of the Ballina Community Clean Up. This is an organisation of more than 300 who meet each week to work on various project to improve the town. There is a great community spirit within the group, and that has really shown itself during the COVID pandemic. Bringing people out in a safe way, to work on projects has been great to lift spirits and important in supporting peoples mental health. At the moment I am also involved in a project to raise funding of €60,000 for a new Sensory Park in the Town Park. I have been involved with St Nicholas School and Autism is a cause that is important to me so I know the value a Sensory Park could offer.

Why did you decide to get involved?

When I moved back to Ballina to work with Callan Tansey, I felt it was important to give something back to the town. Now with a young family of my own it is even more important to support local organisations and initiatives to make sure that the community stays strong and full of activity. It’s also important that my children understand that these organisations only exist due to the work of volunteers, so they learn to help out when their time comes

Do you feel you get any benefit from your volunteering?

Absolutely, while I meet a lot of people in my working day we are very focused on the specific matters I am working on. Getting out from behind the desk and heading off in the evening or at weekends to meet a variety of people, from all walks of life is a breath of fresh air. Having the chat and the banter makes you really feel part of the community. It’s a great feeling to see a project come together, to share that sense of accomplishment with the wider community.

What advice do you have for people thinking of volunteering?

Go for it! Organisations are crying out for help, so you will be welcomed with open arms and you will always get an awful lot more back that you will ever put in.