About the role
What does being a Trustee involve?
The Board of Trustees (“the board”) is the governing body of Parkinson’s UK. Trustees are jointly and severally responsible for the overall governance and strategic direction of the charity and must ensure that the charity is solvent, well run and delivers against its charitable objects. The board must make decisions in the best interests of the charity as a whole and are accountable to its beneficiaries, members, donors and its regulators.
Being a Trustee is a legal and fiduciary role, but as important is your commitment to our vision and values. Together, our Board of Trustees needs to be able to interpret and discuss complex financial information, assess and respond appropriately to sometimes hazardous risk, and ensure compliance with the statutory and regulatory frameworks imposed by charity and company law.
We also want you to become an ambassador for people with Parkinson’s and Parkinson’s UK. You can do this in a number of ways - for example, by talking to local groups, using social media or helping us to fundraise or raise awareness of Parkinson’s.
For details of the Charity Commission’s guidance about charity trustees and what’s involved visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/charity-trustee-whats-involved
Am I suitable to be a trustee?
It is important to us that our board reflects the real world. We want our trustees to have diversity of background, thought and experience, so that our board has a breadth of perspective that will lead to healthy debate and different ideas around the table.
Please read the attached trustee role description carefully and ensure that you fully understand the responsibilities and liabilities that you will take on if you become elected as a trustee. However, please bear in mind that no single trustee is required to have all the skills and experience that are needed on a board, so don’t be deterred if you do not possess all the skills listed. We would encourage anyone interested to at least take the opportunity to have a phone call with an existing trustee before deciding to withdraw from the process.
Likewise, the suitability checklist included (FORM 5) is a guide only.
Will having Parkinson’s (or caring for someone with Parkinson’s) affect my ability to be a trustee?
We encourage people with Parkinson’s, and others affected by Parkinson’s, to become trustees and take an active part in board and charity activities. A number of our current trustees have Parkinson’s, and a number have family or friends with Parkinson’s. No trustee is expected to attend 100% of meetings and we make accommodation available before and/or after meetings to help with journeys. We can also support remote attendance via digital means when necessary. However, travel to London for some board meetings and induction activities will be unavoidable.
During our meetings we schedule regular breaks and have a ‘quiet room’ next to the board meeting room which trustees can use if they need time out from the meeting.
No two people with Parkinson’s are the same and if you have Parkinson’s you’ll have better insight into and understanding of what challenges you may face with the condition over the four-year term.
Please let us know if you would like to discuss how we could support you as a trustee. We want to be able to do whatever we can to assist you with the election process and potential future trusteeship.
To be eligible to stand for election as a trustee you must:
be eligible to be a trustee and not been disqualified from acting as such; and
live in the country in which you are standing for election; and
have been a member of the charity for at least the last six months continuously as at the application deadline; and
not have been employed or received payment for services by Parkinson’s UK in the past year (except expenses).
Anticipated length of role
You will be an elected trustee of the charity and your role of trustee is for a four-year term, after which you may stand for election for a further four years.
Time commitment to the role will be around the equivalent of two days per month, however this may increase during times of high activity, for example during your first six months when you will undertake a number of induction activities. If you are a member of a committee the additional time commitment will be approximately six days per year.
The regular annual commitment (excluding induction) includes:
Seven all day meetings of the Board, including an annual away day, and time involved to read papers beforehand
One full day Members’ Day and AGM per year
Committee, panel or working group commitments as appropriate
Keeping up-to-date with developments within the charity and governance best practice
Other Parkinson's UK events as appropriate
Charity meetings are usually held at the charity’s UK Office at 215 Vauxhall Bridge Road, London SW1V 1EJ, and occasional travel outside of London may be required. Meetings are designed in ways to assist people in attending (location/time/structure of agenda) including Skype options in some instances to make these meetings more accessible for all.
Support provided to you
Support is provided by a small governance team who can assist with travel arrangements, circulation of meeting papers and general queries.
All new Elected Trustees are also offered the opportunity to be matched with an existing Trustee to act as a buddy and friend to help you settle into the role.
Learning and development
A key part of our People Strategy is to continue to develop and enhance the learning experience during your time at Parkinson’s UK, and we are proud to offer many learning opportunities, along with a full induction.
HOW TO stand for election
To stand for election please download and review the Trustee Election Guide and Role Description where you can learn more about the role, process and timetable.
For further information on the election process or queries regarding any of the information contained in this booklet please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Your query will be responded to by either Kate Monro, Assistant Company Secretary (020 7963 3930) or Aleksandra di Fato (020 7963 3993).
Expressions of interest due: ideally by 15 May but please do still get in touch after this date if you are interested
Interviews: Tuesday 21 May 2019 and Thursday 23 May 2019 (additional dates tbc)
Closing date for final applications: Thursday 20 June 2019