Our Bright Future, a partnership led by the Wildlife Trusts, has published a free guide to help charities recruit young trustees to their boards.
Its Young Trustees Advice Pack contains a range of resources, including case studies and templates, to guide charities that wish to recruit and induct young people as trustees.
It is estimated that just 0.5% of charity trustees are aged between 18 and 24. Under trust law, appointed trustees must be over the age of 18.
The guide states that many organisations are ‘keen to bring about diversity of their board, particularly through the lens of younger people’.
It says: ‘Boards whose trustees have different backgrounds and experience are more likely to encourage debate and make better decisions.’
The guide identifies six steps to make it easier for charities to get young trustees onto their boards.
- Identify skills and experience gaps and agree what you’re looking for.
- Create an inclusive role description and application form.
- Arrange an interview process that is accessible.
- Organise a welcoming induction process.
- Support the new trustees before, during and after board meetings.
- Ensure a rewarding experience during tenancy and capture learning at end of term process.
Ellie Brown, a young trustee at the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust, said: ‘Having young people involved in an organisation’s decision-making processes can have a positive effect, as young people bring in new ideas, have different priorities and offer a different perspective. They can also challenge the way the organisation engages with young people, so it becomes easier for young people to become involved with the organisation.’
Our Bright Future is a £33m initiative funded by the National Lottery Community Fund. Between 2016 and 2021, it developed 31 projects around the UK to empower young people aged 11 to 24 and help them gain skills and experience, and to improve their wellbeing.
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