Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Corporate Partner Spotlight: Fasken Martineau

Fasken Martineau, a long time supporter of Dress For Success Vancouver and Impact 360. Carmine Boskovich, partner at the firm shares insights into their ongoing commitment to DFS Vancouver.

How is Fasken Martineau involved with Dress for Success Vancouver?
We have been involved with DFS Vancouver for at least 15 years in various board positions, fundraising activities, and clothing drives. It has been a long standing commitment of the firm to DFS Vancouver.

What makes Fasken so passionate about the organization? 
Women are making changes for themselves and wanting to improve their job status to better their lives and their families. DFS Vancouver supports women and their whole family and that’s fundamentally important. 

A really interesting fact somewhat unknown even in the legal community is that DFS Vancouver provides support to the Vancouver legal community. Students in the legal assistant training program at Douglas College are invited to get dressed at DFS Vancouver before their first interview. DFS Vancouver has a connection with the people who work out here and it’s one of those organizations that the firm is firmly committed to supporting because it’s a hand up, not a hand out.

What do you mean by ‘it’s a hand up, not a hand out’?
Women who come through the DFS Vancouver program really need to commit to their life and to their career plan. It's difficult for sure, some women have been out of the work force for a while or even if they just want an upgrade, it’s a lot of work for the women to go through the program. That’s why we love supporting them.

Are there any events that you look forward to the most?
Fasken has always been a really big supporter of the Impact 360 event, we’ve been sponsoring the event for at least 8 years now. One of the speakers that came to the event had a huge impact on me. She was so well spoken and her story was so inspiring, a really great example of the types of women that DFS Vancouver are helping. She came on to find success in her life from a place you wouldn’t have thought.  I was inspired to get involved and worked on the organizing committee for a few years in the sponsorship area.  And, if not me, every year there are Fasken people working on the event.

Impact 360 is always such a fun event and every year there’s something new. They try to make it interesting for people to come again year after year. 

What’s the most rewarding part of the work you’re doing?

I love to hear the stories about the women who have come through the program, and hearing the success stories. One memory that stood out to me is one of the spokeswomen talking about the impact that going through the program had on her children. The change in her confidence and outlook made a big difference in her life and as her confidence grew, so did the confidence of her children. You’re impacting many people within a family, not just one person. 

Is there anything else the community would be interested to hear about Fasken?
Our continuous support of DFS Vancouver demonstrates that we make commitments and see them through. We’re not jumping on the next new exciting non-profit, or the next fancy event. It’s about supporting your partners that are doing great work and you’re supporting people who are doing the day to day.

That’s why we commit to DFS Vancouver to sponsor Impact 360 every year. It makes such a difference to have consistent sponsors to come back to year after year as it allows the volunteers to spend their energy on other things instead of starting from scratch and getting new sponsorship every year.

How did you get involved with the organization?
My friend Ashley Willard-Baumaun has been on the board for the past five years and was the chair of Impact 360 (when it was IMPACT). She has done a lot of great work for DFS Vancouver and she invited me to come out.

One more thing
I did have the opportunity to work with Deborah Twocock and she was an amazing leader. I do think that her legacy has been continued and improved upon. I was involved when Deb was ill and it was a really hard time for the entire organization, she had all the institutional memory. I really respect how the organization went from everything that Deb did to focus on moving forward. I know she’s proud of where DFS Vancouver is today.

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