Becoming a Trustee

Volunteering your skills to a charity can be life-changing, not just for the organisation.

Hear how from Lynsey Marshall, Saltire Scholar 2009, Audit Manager & Finance Trustee for Crystal Palace Trust.


"As the recent winner of Institute of Directors ‘Director of the Year – Public & Third Sector’ for my work as a Trustee of the Crystal Palace Park Trust, I wanted to share how hugely rewarding, challenging and inspiring this opportunity to be a Trustee has been for me – and how it could be for you too. Crystal Palace Park Trust is a new yet rapidly growing charity whose aim is to secure a sustainable future for the Park, with a plan to become its custodian and regenerate it for the benefit of everyone. I took on the role of their Finance Trustee, to design, build and implement their financial plans, governance and processes from scratch. In receiving this award, the Judges commented that “This company has clearly created a sound operating framework which will pave the way for the future success of the charity.”

"The Trust’s ambitions were, and continue to be, ambitious. I joined at a turning point where rapid growth was just about to commence, but without the systems, governance and processes to match. I swiftly pulled together a basis for financial governance, a suite of policies and procedures and a financial plan to guide us through decision-making – all while negotiations were ongoing with our potential customers! I found this to be the ‘creative’ part of a financial leadership role, where I could design our systems according to the needs of the Trust but also my own passion to ensure we operated to the highest possible ‘ESG’ standards. My colleagues are wholly supportive of decisions, policies and contracts that put the community at the heart of everything we do. While my main role is ‘finance’, in a growing entity there are always more scope and I’m sharing input and learning across many other areas too. That’s another part of the beauty of being a Trustee."

"The lessons and experience I have gained as a Trustee have served me well as I navigate my career in Audit & Risk at the British Transport Police Authority. I have put into practice concepts I usually audit or provide high-level guidance on, such as commercial contracts, recruitment, accounting policies, human resource considerations and (my least favourite!) tax. In my trustee role, I gained confidence and fine-tuned my communication and influencing skills at Board level. Board members I engage with in my day job have recognised my Trustee role and the new perspectives I can bring to their organisation."

"It occurred to me just how much my how much my education, the internship opportunity and my experience across multiple sectors have allowed me to leverage such great examples of best practice to apply in my role as a trustee and I’m incredibly proud of the contribution both I and my fellow trustees have made to safeguarding Crystal Palace Park for future generations. My work as a Trustee has become my passion and a way for me to actively contribute to the success of a community and a cause that I love. As entrepreneurs and leaders, giving back is so important and I encourage anyone reading this to get involved."

Social Good Connect have made it really easy for you to find a Trustee position that’s right for you. They have charity members across the whole country looking for committed individuals to join their boards. They’ve put together a blog for you here answering all of the most popular questions. What is a board? Are there risks? What’s the commitment?

If you would like to find out more about any of the featured Trustee roles below or are interested to speak to someone, just send an email to , the Charity Relationship Manager at Social Good Connect.

Here is a shortlist of a few charities still looking for board members:

Advocacy is about empowering people who need a stronger voice by enabling them to express their needs. It is about safeguarding people who are vulnerable and who may be discriminated against or those whom services find difficult to serve

Advocacy Highland requires different skills, knowledge and experience from their directors at different times and therefore they need directors who bring:

  • A clear vision of the organisation’s aims and objectives
  • Passion and knowledge about independent advocacy and commitment to its principles and values
  • Time to devote to the Board and the responsibilities required of membership of the Board

A small registered charity that collects freely donated toiletries and redistributes them to people in poverty. They work across Lothian with donation boxes in shops and businesses with an aim of promoting dignity for people living in difficulties such as poverty by allowing them to take from a Dignity Box without having to ask or thank anyone.

They are looking to recruit people who are willing to engage in taking their charity forward into a new phase of development for general board member positions.

You would be working with a group of like-minded people who are passionate about helping others particularly by relieving poverty. Dignity Boxes do this by working with organisations that work directly with people in areas of deprivation. There is satisfaction in the responses they receive and communicating with others who have values similar to the charity’s values.

Fife Young Carers SCIO is a local charity committed to improving the support and information provided to Young Carers in Fife. FYC has been managed since 2003 by a voluntary board of trustees who oversee the development of the service. Since then, the service has expanded significantly and now employs 24 members of staff, along with a bank of sessional workers.

They are seeking individuals with a wide variety of skills and expertise to join them in delivering this service. There are a number of areas they’re looking to develop; a communications strategy; fundraising capabilities; social media presence. They are also looking to recruit a Treasurer.

They meet approx. every 6 weeks for 2-3 hours as a full Board and between, flexibly, as required by the role and activity. At present this is virtually but hope to return to face to face meetings in the near future.

Set up by women, for women, to provide women and children who are at risk of domestic abuse with a safe and friendly place to turn to for support, information and, if necessary, refuge accommodation.

As part of the Women’s Aid network, they also work to change attitudes and the legal system. Campaigning to bring the issue of domestic abuse from behind closed doors and have it recognised as a crime.

They are particularly keen to hear from women with the following professional backgrounds; human resources/employment law, organisational development and change management, finance/charity accounting, fundraising, IT and women from a legal background. They also strongly encourage women who have personal experience of domestic abuse to offer us their personal insight into accessing and using the range of services offered by women's aid and partners.

The board currently meet every 6 weeks via Zoom. It is important that prospective trustees recognise that they will also be, at times, responsible for progressing pieces of work in between meetings, either on an individual basis on behalf of the board or as part of a sub-group of the board. There is also an expectation that new trustees will fully participate in a comprehensive induction, as well as ongoing training and support.

A grass roots, community music organisation based in the Gorbals, Glasgow. Running 8 weekly music sessions for people of all ages and backgrounds; bringing them together to create memories, improve mental health and wellbeing and increase feelings of community and belonging.

They are looking for a Treasurer for our Board of Trustees; a group of 8 - 12 people who meet 8 times a year to make decisions on how to best run the charity. At Givin’ it Laldie they work with Brett Nicholls Associates who support with management accounts, budgets and Independent Examinations. Therefore, the Treasurer is responsible for but not limited to the following:

  • Overseeing financial aspects of the charity, on behalf of the Board of Trustees, to ensure its short and long-term viability.
  • Assisting the Chair, Secretary and Manager to ensure the Board of Trustees fulfils its duties and responsibilities for the proper financial governance of the charity.
  • Ensuring that funding received for specific purposes is separately accounted for and spent for the purposes for which it was given.
  • Ensuring that the charity operates within the financial guidelines set out in current legislation, by the Charity Commission, in the charity’s Constitution.
  • Ensuring that the charity has adequate financial procedures and controls and that these are monitored and reviewed regularly.
  • Regularly evaluating the charity’s cash flow position, and to informing the board of any concerns.

BATs is a Community Sports Club that is transitioning to being a SCIO to a charity. BATs works across 15 primary schools and several secondary schools to bring team sport, physical activity and life skills to young people across the North of Edinburgh- we use rugby to do this in various forms- touch rugby, adapted versions and full-blown rugby.

They’re looking for trustees who can help develop BATs in line with their goals to ensure that they provide access to their services to as many people as possible across North Edinburgh, particularly those from disadvantaged or disengaged communities.

They are looking for people who can bring:

  • A wide range of skills and knowledge to the Board of BATs Trustees- in particular individuals who have knowledge and experience of developing girls’ and women’s sports or arts groups
  • Experience of developing inclusive and diverse community groups
  • Experience of building successful enterprises in either the private or charitable sectors


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