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Volunteer Trustee for Home-Start Wokingham District

inVOLve Community Services


Posted over 30 days ago...

Do you want to help us improve the lives of parents and young children in Wokingham? You could be a trustee for Home-Start Wokingham District, a local charity that gives every child the best possible start in life.


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Wokingham, RG41 1EH

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Expires at anytime

What will you be doing?

Set up in 1996, we offer “a lifeline”, a free family support service to families with at least one child under the age of five; we cover the whole of Wokingham district, which is a population growth area. Associated with Home-Start UK (which nationally has some 13,500 home-visiting volunteers supporting over 27,000 families and 56,000 children to transform their lives), we are a local and independent charity governed by our trustees. We support about 100 families in Wokingham district each year but like many charities, the cost-of-living crisis has affected our organisation as much as it has impacted upon those families. Our income in 2022/23 was grown back to £140k and our trustees are developing a strategic plan for the next five years.   The role and what we are looking for in a new trustee Trustees are the people who make the top-level decisions for our charity. Our Board includes people with experience and skills in early years, education and business. We’d expect new trustees to have empathy with our cause and our beneficiaries; we’d also appreciate any experience, skills and ideas in fund-raising, finance, law or digital that might bring to us. You don’t necessarily need prior experience of charity trusteeship, as support from local charity-support organisations is always available.  Full induction to our organisation will be provided, plus specialist support as a new trustee, including access to external training. If you can think strategically and plan long-term, you have the primary skills needed by our trustees; you’ll also need to be able to work collectively with other Board members. Support from our paid employees is always available, as they will be dealing with the day-to-day running of the organisation. We are a charity not a business, but we apply business principles to governing our organisation. We are looking for people from a variety of backgrounds to join our charity. We want to expand the diversity of our board, in all meanings of the word, and strongly welcome applications from people from less-represented groups.  We ask for about six hours of your time per month, which includes all meetings, discussions, etc., many of which are held online. Obviously, you’ll need access to digital communications, as much of our charity’s business is run that way.

What are we looking for?

Here is some of what we would expect from our trustees. We know that you may also need training and support from employees, from other trustees and from external organisations, and that that will be forthcoming, as necessary, to build on any area.

Understanding of the needs of our beneficiaries is desirable; an empathy with them is essential Clear commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion, valuing differences to make better decisions and deliver better services for our beneficiaries Strategic vision; good, independent judgement; ability to think creatively, tempered by pragmatism and reality Ability to cooperatively work with the team of trustees, bringing impartiality and objectivity to decision-making Skills and ability to listen, even to dissenting views Willingness to speak your mind and to challenge other trustees and employees with good intent; able to make unpopular recommendations to the Board, if necessary Skills to analyse proposals, examine their strategic consequences and make concise recommendations Secure personal access to digital communication and able to competently use those resources Commitment to the organisation; willingness and ability to devote the necessary time & effort including attendance at some of our local fund-raising and publicity events (Town Fayre, Half-Marathon etc.) While experience and understanding of charity law and governance can be useful, we strongly welcome people without prior charity trustee experience in order to increase the diversity of our Board; training in those areas is provided Willingness to undertake appropriate training, including that provided by Home-Start Wokingham District and Home-Start UK Having appropriate personal and professional contacts & networks, with willingness to draw on those as needed

  What do you get as a volunteer trustee with our organisation?   

An opportunity to exercise your strategic planning skills, probably in a different environment or context  An opportunity to influence and collectively-lead an organisation supporting families of young children A chance to augment your experience of charities and boost to your career and CV, if needed  Satisfaction of helping an organisation that supports families, thus giving something back to your community 

What difference will you make?

What do we get?   

Your strategic skills, knowledge, understanding or experience Your abilities to influence plans for our charity’s future, especially in this cost-of-living crisis Enhancement to our overall governance and the Board of trustees; improvement in our operational growth    Your participation in our collective decision-making, contributing to all areas of our charity work    Your enthusiasm   

   What do our beneficiaries get?   

The ability to continue our support for families with young children A forward-looking and agile organisation, with a well-informed and well-managed Board of trustees  


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