Do you have some spare time to support a charity that helps people in Sheffield to become better connected?
We are SAVTE, and we work with Sheffield communities to support the development of practical English language skills and volunteering experiences. Through this, we help people build confidence, to become more active, empowered and connected in their local communities. Our active network of volunteers supports people to learn English in community settings or in their homes, and through this, we help connect people and change lives.
We’re really proud of the work the SAVTE does across the city, and we’re always looking for ways to expand and improve our provision of English language support. We’re now seeking people to join our Board of Trustees, to help steer the work of the charity so SAVTE can connect more people and change more lives.
What does a trustee do?
Trustees support the paid staff who deliver the day-to-day work of the charity. The Board of Trustees has responsibility for making sure SAVTE is delivering against its mission to help communities and individuals realise their potential through English language skills and volunteering. We oversee the management and administration of the charity, helping the staff and volunteers do what they do best. For more information about the trustee role in general, see this guide from Reach Volunteering.
The kind of activities trustees get involved with at SAVTE includes:
- Contributing to quarterly Board meetings
- Providing guidance for accounting, fundraising, marketing, programme development, and evaluation activities
- Contributing to specific projects such as recruitment, infrastructure development and organising events
- Helping to promote the reputation and work of SAVTE with different audiences.
Being a trustee is a voluntary (unpaid) role, although reasonable expenses can be claimed, such as travel costs.
How much time does the role take?
The time trustees give to the role varies, depending on people’s capacity and what’s going on during the year. At a minimum, trustees should be able to attend the quarterly board meetings (normally lasting a couple of hours, with preparation time needed beforehand), and contribute to discussion and decision-making in between, usually via email. If trustees have more time to give, they can contribute to more activities around this.
Board meetings tend to take place in Sheffield on weekday evenings, to accommodate trustees who work during the day. We do our best to make sure people can be active trustees whether they have work and/or caring commitments.
What are you looking for in a new trustee?
The main thing we want in a trustee is for them to be passionate about supporting SAVTE’s work, and to have enough time available to contribute to meetings and decision-making.
It doesn’t matter if you haven’t been a trustee before; we offer an induction process to help all trustees get to know the role and the organisation, so they can feel confident as a trustee.
We’re really keen to recruit more trustees who have lived experience that reflects the experiences of the people SAVTE supports. We also welcome people who have professional experience that can contribute to the values and purpose of the organisation. In particular, we’d like to hear from people who:
- have lived experience of the issues of under-represented communities,
- have a multilingual background,
- have been ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) learners,
- have experience of fundraising and/or managing finances,
- have experience of managing people and/or human resources experience,
- have experience of community development work,
- have experience of monitoring and evaluation to measure impact.
You can read about our current Board of Trustees on the SAVTE website.
I might be interested; what should I do next?
If you think you might like to be a trustee with SAVTE, you can get in touch to arrange an informal chat with our Chief Executive Officer, Stella Burton, or the current Co-Chairs of the Board, Jo Reynolds and Debbie Hall. Please email email@example.com to request a chat.