Research suggests that there are hundreds of thousands of people serving as Trustees in the UK, all of whom play a vital role in the day-to-day running of charitable organisations. Volunteering to become a Trustee can be a truly rewarding thing to do no matter what stage of life you are in. 

In this blog we look at what is expected of a Trustee and some of the benefits of getting involved.

What is a Trustee?

Trustees join charities as volunteers and have overall control of how they’re run. They are responsible for making sure the organisation is doing what it set out to do and that it has the funds it needs to run effectively.

They use their skills and professional experience to support their charities or causes, working together to help them achieve their aims and charitable objectives and deciding their overall direction. As a Trustee, you are expected to act in the best interest of the charity at all times.

Trustees can also be called board members, governors or committee members.

Who can become a Trustee?

One of the most important things charities need from their Trustees is someone who is committed to the organisation and enthusiastic about what they stand for. It is important that they recruit people from a wide range of backgrounds who offer a variety of different skills and experience.

Most people over the age of 18 can become Trustees. However, there are a number of legal reasons you can be disqualified as a Trustee such as having unspent convictions or being an undischarged bankrupt. Some charities will have their own additional criteria and requirements when it comes to recruiting Trustees.

Trustee of Abbeyfield chatting to a resident

What are the benefits of becoming a charity Trustee?

1. Give something back

Becoming a Trustee is a fantastic way to give something back to a cause you care about. You’ll be playing an integral part in the way the charity is run, ensuring it remains sustainable and financially viable. The help you provide will be invaluable.

2. Meet new people

Joining a new organisation or charity is a fantastic way to meet new people from a range of different personal and professional backgrounds. There will likely be annual meetings to attend, day-to-day tasks to complete with other volunteers and staff at the charity, events or activities to do within your local community, as well as many other opportunities to meet new and interesting people.

3. Learn new things

Getting involved as a charity Trustee is a great way to put your professional skills to use, but can also be a fantastic opportunity to learn new things. You’ll get great insight into what’s involved in the management of charities and gain skills on working well within a leadership role.

4. Improve your CV and enhance your professional development

Recent research shows that over 55s are most likely to become Trustees, with just 0.5% of all charity Trustees being between the ages of 18 and 24. While there are many reasons for this, young people are increasingly being encouraged to get involved as Trustees due to the fantastic opportunity it provides for professional development. From learning how organisations are run to planning finances and attending meetings, this experience can be the perfect way to boost a CV and set you apart from the crowd.

Becoming a Trustee at your local Abbeyfield home

Established in 1956, we’re an international charity that supports over 8,000 older people in a variety of housing and care settings as well as in local communities. Our founder’s aim is as true as ever today; to alleviate loneliness through companionship, making time for older people and providing a supportive environment for improved quality of later life.

As a charity, we rely on boards of volunteer Trustees to help with the smooth running of our services. We welcome Trustees from all professions and backgrounds, so that there is a varied mix of skills and experience to ensure that each house and home operates as efficiently and successfully as possible.

In return, we can offer the opportunity to be part of a respected movement, which puts older people at the forefront of all we do, whilst delivering personal growth and the chance to join our family.

Get in touch about becoming a Trustee at your local Abbeyfield today.


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