Bad news sells. This rings true during the best of times and seems particularly prevalent in the worst. Some psychologists believe it’s because human beings have an inherent negativity bias; others say bad news is simply more interesting than good.
Whatever the reason, the staff at Virginia Lawyers Weekly agrees it’s time to share some news that will make you smile – or at the very least, provide a momentary respite from the draining reality of today.
Which is exactly what one Richmond law firm is trying to do. On April 16, the attorneys at Bowen Ten Cardani teamed up with Little Bean Coffee Company to provide $1,000 worth of coffee for the staff and healthcare providers at Memorial Regional Medical Center in Mechanicsville.
“We feel it’s important for everyone generally to do their part in making sure that we’re giving to those who are suffering and to give healthcare heroes all we can, to make them feel supported,” said family law attorney Nupur Bal.
Bal said she gained a particular interest in finding a way to support first responders after hearing from her husband, who works as a physician, how much medical providers and their families are being negatively impacted during these times.
“A cup of coffee isn’t some huge, extravagant show, but I think they appreciated that members of the community recognize what they’re doing and what they’re putting on the line,” she said.
Bal’s firm is not alone in its effort to support – and feed – local first responders. Since March 30, Dulaney, Lauer & Thomas in Front Royal has been partnering with Anthony’s Pizza to send lunch to a different group of first responders.
“Next on our list is the Warren County Sheriff’s Department. Then we’ll go through the first responders all over again,” said Front Royal attorney Carl Lauer. “As long as this thing is going on and businesses are shut down, we’re going to try and do this for our first responders.”
Lauer highlighted the efforts being made by food delivery drivers during this time, noting that Anthony’s Pizza has been offering his firm a “price break” every week that allows them to tip the drivers well.
“They’re first responders. They’re out there having tough times, too,” Lauer said. “Our firm is fortunate enough to still be working… So we’re doing everything we can to support other people right now.”
Bowen Ten is also taking strides to support small businesses. The firm orders lunch for the staff from various local restaurants at least once a week, provided its lawyers with handmade face masks from Richmond-area vendors and treated its staff to jam from Dayum This Is My Job, a small business in Henrico.
The firm is currently looking to partner with local restaurants to bring meals to more hospitals in the upcoming weeks.
“We’re trying our best to support local area businesses during this time,” Bal said.
To support the community at large, the firm has also waived consultation fees for family law matters, as well as civil and commercial litigation matters.
Given how heavily impacted family law has been by the coronavirus pandemic, this is one gesture that can go a long way.
“COVID-19 has brought such rapid changes to families financially and otherwise. It’s a daunting time,” Bal said. “Wherever we can find happiness, we’ll take it, right?”
Have you or your firm been doing good works and spreading kindness lately? If so, VLW would love to hear from you.
Send in your good news to firstname.lastname@example.org.