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Law firm Withers engaged employees across 17 offices in a fundraising fitness challenge "The Withers World Tour", which started on October 2020.  

Initially scheduled to end in January, the firm reached the initial fundraising goal after six weeks at the end of November. The fundraising side continued until the end of 2020. A total of US$46,000 (HK$357,000) was given to three charities in Hong Kong, the UK, and the US. 

The purpose of the challenge is to invite employees to travel the 23,000 miles between their offices and raise US$23,000 for charity at the same time. 

Another reason for the fundraiser is to increase awareness of the importance of finding ways to remain active while working from home, inspired in part by one of the London team's family members who passed away in 2020. 

"Our inspiration for the world tour was to find a means to bring people together the world over while we adapted to some new homeworking environments, and to motivate and support us all to get out of our seats and into the fresh air," said Amber Melville-Brown, partner and head of the firm's charitable giving programme.

About 1200 employees took part in the company-wide wellbeing and charitable giving initiative such as walking, running, swimming, cycling and dancing. Highlights include global deskercise sessions on Zoom, Caribbean soca (a type of music) dance classes, office walking and lunge competitions, cold-water swimming, high-intensity interval training, indoor and outdoor cycling, and lots of dog walking.

Margaret Robertson, CEO and head of the firm's wellbeing programme, comments: "Maintaining morale and finding ways to keep our people connected and having some fun has been one of my biggest priorities during this year like no other."

Withers has 17 offices in London, New York, New Haven, Greenwich (Connecticut), San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles, Rancho Santa Fe, Hong Kong, Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo, the British Virgin Islands, Geneva, Milan, Padua and Cambridge.