Campaigning / activism
I am proud to be able to support the work of so many charitable organisations. I first became a trustee in 2013 for my local hospital radio station, Radio Horton. In 2019, I was elected as a trustee of the Hospital Broadcasting Association (HBA) which represents hospital, health and wellbeing broadcasting organisations across the country.
I am also part of the national Young Trustees Movement. The mission is to increase the number of young trustees in charitable organisations across the UK by 2024.
Firstly, you may be asking yourself, what is a trustee?
Charity trustees are the people who share ultimate responsibility for governing a charity and directing how it is managed and run. They may be called trustees, the board, the management committee, governors, directors or something else. Trustees oversee several aspects including managing the charity’s finances, ensuring the charity is meeting its charitable objectives and is carrying out its purposes for public benefit and within the law. You are usually a volunteer although some trusteeships can be paid positions, depending on the organisation.
That all sounds a bit scary, so, what made you want to become a trustee?
For me, I wanted to bring my skills and creativity to a charitable organisation, as well as increasing the diversity of the two organisations I represent. I have been a trustee from the age of 22 and continue to relish every moment. Don’t get me wrong, there have been many hurdles to overcome in the last seven years (and I will blog about these) but I strongly believe that thanks to broadening the diversity, I have opened up the organisation to new ideas, strengthening its objectives and safeguarding its future.
I love the challenges that come with being a trustee, but knowing that you are one small part of a team who are working together to make a positive impact on the people or communities you are serving makes it all the more rewarding.
Whilst there are similarities of being a trustee at local level with Radio Horton and at national level with the Hospital Broadcasting Association, the latter comes with bigger responsibilities because we represent 170 hospital, health and wellbeing broadcasting organisations across the country.
What is the Young Charity Trustees Movement?
You can find more information on their website. But broadly, the mission is to double the number of trustees aged 30 and under on charity boards by 2024, inspiring organisations to recruit younger people to their trustee boards and changing perceptions of what a trustee looks like, particularly by shining the light on young trustees!
As a Young Charity Trustees Movement Champion, I am looking forward to working with organisations and young people in the South East region of England to promote the benefits of recruiting and becoming a trustee.
I am thinking of becoming a trustee and am inspired by your story. What should I do?
Go for it! If you’re young, motivated and full of new, creative ideas or can bring technologies to organisations or add diversity to a board, you are making a small contribution which has the potential to make a lasting impact. I’d recommend looking at the Young Charity Trustees resources and searching for opportunities on sites such as Volunteering Matters or Do-it.org.
If there is a particular cause or charity that you care about, approach them directly and express your interest in becoming a trustee. It is useful if you have some previous experience you can demonstrate. Some organisations will require you to be a member, or to have volunteered or served the organisation for a certain period of time before you can stand for election, but it is important to get your foot in the door.
Contact me if you would like any tips or support – I am more than happy to talk you through based on my own experiences and offer friendly, impartial advice!