Trustees are the people who lead the charity and decide how it is run. Being a trustee means making decisions that will impact people in their community or society as a whole. Trustees use their skills and experience to support their charities, helping them achieve their aims. Trustees also often learn new skills during their time on the board so being a trustee is a great way to learn.
Volunteering as a Trustee is a rewarding role but one that most volunteers don't tend to consider. However your experience could make a lasting impact on the charity, for example your social media skills could help a charity keep up in the digital age; or you may be able to bring a different viewpoint to represent a certain part of the community and ensure that all members of the community are heard.
How do I become a trustee?
We've got some Trustees Week special Opportunities for you...
You will find trustee vacanies in our latest Star Opportunities newsletter and through Volunteer Connect.
Not registered to receive our opportunities newsletter which has the best of the latest opportunities?
Register to our Volunteer Connect database and opt in to receive newsletters.
Colin Winchester acts as a Trustee for the Hounslow Community FoodBox. Although it was not something he had considered before, a friend highlighted that he had the right knowledge and background to help the charity. Although he had always to given, he said: “I hadn’t thought that time and expertise are more valuable in many cases as money or discarded goods… I am now giving something back to society albeit time and knowledge.
“Very often you don’t know how useful that will be to a specific charity or cause as most are run by volunteers, who have a mix of skills and enthusiasm. What they might be missing to help them become more effective and to provide a better service to their cause could well be what you know and can provide. You could be the missing piece in the jigsaw.”
If you are considering becoming a trustee, Colin recommends that you ask all of the questions that you can, meet the volunteers and attend at least two trustees meetings before you commit to the organisation. Colin says that in order to make sure you understand your responsibilities it’s also helpful to make sure you will have a specific role which does not overlap with another trustee.
Colin commits to one meeting every three months which takes place in the evening for about 2 hours. He also spends some additional time promoting the organisation at events. For him, the rewards of being a trustee are to help a cause that you believe in and meet amazing people: “You will see many examples of the good side of human nature…”