Bolt Burdon Kemp host first Women Lawyers and Mothers London Lunch Meeting
Tuesday 26th June 2019 saw the first ever London networking lunch meeting for the Women Lawyers And Mothers (WLAM) network.
The lunch, organised by Hannah Beko of Gunner Cooke and Authentically Speaking and Hannah Travis of Bolt Burdon Kemp, saw like minded women lawyers and mothers come together for something to eat, networking and a good chat about all things involving juggling legal careers and parenthood. Many a story and a laugh was exchanged about our individual experiences being pregnant at work, coming back from maternity leave and the trials and tribulations which come with having a new baby and trying to continue the career path you were on. Constant nursery bugs were a topic we all had in common!
WLAM goodie bags were a particular highlight giving a much needed chocolate fix in the afternoon, these were kindly sponsored by Somaya Ouazzani of Mimoza Fleur and Hannah Beko of Authentically Speaking.
WLAM is a non profit organization founded by the wonderful Cynthia Jakes. It is flexible and free to join and be part of. WLAM is passionate about diversity and helping working parents succeed with work life balance.
WLAM’s mission is to:
Support, to inspire and empower mothers in the legal industry and to create a community for women lawyers and mothers that supports them in both their career progression and handling the everyday experiences of life as a working mother in law.
The network is for lawyers who may be on a career break, working mothers, women who are thinking about having children in the future or anyone who wishes to support a network that gives a voice to those women balancing work and family life. Whilst the network focuses on the unique challenges women lawyers face they also provide support to all parents or caregivers which means it is also open to fathers or expectant fathers to be.
The network is countrywide with representatives in many local areas including Manchester, the North East, West Midlands, Scotland, Leeds, Brighton, Eastbourne and Hastings as well as London.
WLAM arrange a number of events, seminars and workshops all of which have had a positive response. The events all take place in parent friendly hours either in the morning or at lunchtime which makes them easily accessible for all of those who are juggling working and family lives.
Previous events have addressed topics such as different working ways to achieve a better work/life balance and empowering women lawyers. Hannah Travis said of the organisation and their recent events:
It was overwhelmingly empowering hearing from women lawyers and working mum lawyers about how to get the right balance and how you can have it both ways, how to get the most out of your career and continue with your aspirations. Realising that imposter syndrome is a very real thing I can relate to. When I came back from maternity leave it was like trying to live in a completely different world when your suddenly a different person now with responsibilities at home and at work and groups like this really help to normalise these feelings, you’re not the only one going through this and it is so good to talk to like minded people and have these connections. It was a breath of fresh air.
“How did she do it?” is WLAM’s next seminar, being held on 3rd July 2019. This seminar involves a panel of leading city female partners discussing the tips and pitfalls of their routes to partnership.
The London group will be meeting monthly on the last Tuesday of each month and the next date and venue will be confirmed shortly, watch this space.
The network is ever reliant on the word of mouth to help it grow and to support more working parents. For anyone who wasn’t able to attend next month’s lunch please keep an eye out for posts on LinkedIn and Twitter from WLAM for further details on the next meeting.
Bolt Burdon Kemp are proud to support WLAM and are supportive of working parents, with long established flexible working arrangements for employees.