Being a Charity Trustee - What's it all about?
Our speaker on September 4th was David Harbourne, Chairman of York CVS (York Centre for Voluntary Service). David started by asking the Question “Why be a trustee?” and answered this by taking a phrase from our own website, “Giving something back”.
He briefly described the time he had had with the different charities whilst giving a plug for York CVS and describing the small charities fund they now had, thanks to some generous donations. He then concentrated on describing the role of the trustee.
One of the websites for finding Trustee opportunities
Whilst many of our members will be trustees themselves it was refreshing for those and illuminating for members who had not yet had the experience of being a trustee. David placed a strong emphasis on the need for trustees in many organisations and the fact that it was not specialist knowledge which was required. Trustees, he was keen to say, needed to be able to use their experience – and common sense – to support the charity.
He then indicated the actual work of the trustee, making clear how trustees were responsible to ensure that the charity followed it own articles of association (constitution) by following the work of the employees.
He pointed out that the time involved was not great, four to eight meetings a year, but that the rewards in terms of enjoyment and satisfaction were great. He reassured anyone concerned about the potential risk by pointing out that organisations inevitably had indemnity insurance to cover this.
Finally, he encouraged anyone not involved to take part and indicated websites where charities advertised their need for volunteer trustees. examples:
York CVS Strategy statements agreed by their trustees