One month to go to Trustees' Week! - focus on potential of young people as trustees

4th October 2011

With only one month to go to this year’s national Trustees’ Week, Monday 31st October – 6th November, Trustees’ Week partners are encouraging local charities and organisations to hold their own events to celebrate the work of their trustees and encourage new people to volunteer in this unique way.

Trustees’ Week 2011 celebrates the fantastic work of existing trustees and aims to increase awareness and understanding of the trustee role. There are already 30 events in England, Scotland and Wales being promoted on the Trustees’ Week website, from training events to ‘speed matching’ evenings matching charities with prospective trustees.

There are downloadable posters and flyers available for any groups wishing to hold an event as well as top tips for events and how to get local media coverage. The website also profiles trustees from around the UK who are passionate about their charities and the difference they can make.

Vanessa John, from Pembrokeshire Association of Voluntary Services (PAVS) said;

"We organised an event for the first Trustees' Week last year and it was a great success, so we are organising events again for this year focusing on current issues affecting organisations. Trustees' Week is a great opportunity to get trusteeship on the map locally and support existing trustees with training to help them in their work. I'd recommend to any voluntary groups to get involved - you never know what might come of it!"

This year Trustees’ Week is also promoting the potential for young people to become trustees. The campaign highlights the mutual benefit of invaluable experience that trusteeship can bring young people as well as the worthwhile contribution they can make to a charity. Research published by the Charity Commission showed that young people are hugely under-represented on charity boards in England and Wales. Despite the fact that young people aged 18-24 make up 12% of the adult population, only 4,220 trustees are aged under 24 out of a total of over 810,000 trustees in England and Wales, yet research shows they are the age group most likely to consider being a trustee.

Trustees’ Week is additionally now being supported by the Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA), Charity Finance Directors’ group (CFDG) and the School Governor’s One Stop Shop, in partnership with the Charity Commission, Charity Trustee Network, recently merged with the Small Charities Coalition, the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), Reach Volunteering, Getting on Board, ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales), Governance magazine, the National Unions of Students (NUS).

Whilst there are around 800,000 trustees in England and Wales, estimates suggest that almost half of charities have a vacancy on their trustee board. A number of the organisations behind Trustees’ Week provide trustee matching services, details of these can be found at www.trusteesweek.org.uk.

The Trustees’ Week website will be updated regularly in the run-up to 31st October with information about the campaign and details of events and activities planned by charities and other organisations.

If you are organising a Trustees’ Week event or if you are a trustee and would be willing to be a case study, please email trusteesweek@charitycommission.gsi.gov.uk

Follow us on Twitter – @trusteesweek hashtag #trusteesweek

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For further information on this story please contact the Charity Commission press office on 020 7674 2366

Notes to Editors

The Charity Commission is the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales. See www.charitycommission.gov.uk for further information or call our contact centre on 0845 300 0218. Our mission is: to ensure charities’ legal compliance, enhance charities’ accountability, encourage charities’ effectiveness and impact and to promote the public interest in charity.

For more information about the organisations behind Trustees’ Week, please visit www.trusteesweek.org.uk or the websites of the organisations themselves:

CTN/Small charities coalition - http://www.trusteenet.org.uk/homepage
Getting on Board - http://www.gettingonboard.org/
ICAEW - www.icaew.com/volunteering
NCVO - http://www.ncvo-vol.org.uk/governanceandleadership
Reach Volunteering - http://www.reachskills.org.uk/
NUS – http://www.nus.org.uk
Governance magazine - http://www.civilsociety.co.uk
WCVA – www.wcva.org.uk
CFDG – www.cfdg.org.uk
SGOSS – www.sgoss.org.uk

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