Home-Start East Surrey (HSES) provide regular emotional support and practical help to struggling families with small children. We are looking for a new Chair to join the Trustee Management Board.
We are a local support charity which provides regular support, friendship and practical help to families who are struggling to cope with difficulties such as disability, mental health, multiple births, isolation and bereavement. Our carefully vetted and trained volunteers visit families weekly and work alongside parents, in their own homes, to help them cope with the difficulties they face. Our volunteers are parents who understand how hard it can be to raise young children.
Our team of some 50 volunteers is supported by a manager, two co-ordinators and an administrator. We operate in accordance with approved policies for safeguarding, referral procedures, confidentiality, data protection and financial management etc. The charity is supervised by a board of volunteer trustees.
We are looking for a new Chair to lead our Management Board of Trustees as our current Chair is retiring. This is an important and challenging role which includes:
• Leading the Trustee Board in its role of setting the direction and strategy of the Charity;
• Ensuring the Trustee Board employs its resources to comply with all legal requirements;
• Planning the annual cycle of Trustee meetings;
• Setting the agenda for Trustee meetings;
• Chairing and facilitating meetings;
• Monitoring the implementation of decisions taken at meetings;
• Liaising with the Manager to maintain an overview of the Charity's affairs and providing guidance as appropriate;
The Charity has offices based in Redhill, Surrey. The Chair will need to visit the Charity's offices at least once every 6 weeks. Trustee meetings are held in the evenings in the Redhill/Reigate/Oxted area.
For our Chair position, we need an enthusiastic and experienced leader who is used to working within a voluntary organisation. As we work closely with the social services and the NHS, relevant experience would be an advantage but not essential. The ideal candidate will be able to:
• Demonstrate a strong and visible passion and commitment to the Charity, its strategic objectives and cause;
• Exhibit strong inter-personal and relation building abilities;
• Have strong networking capabilities that can be utilised for the benefit of the Charity;
• Have the ability to foster and promote a collaborative team environment;
• Have the availability to commit time to conduct the role well.
The following knowledge and skills would be beneficial:
• Ability to operate at a senior strategic leadership level within an organisation;
• An understanding of charity governance and working as part of a board of trustees;
• Ability to deliver presentations and manage stakeholders;
• Ability to chair meetings and events;
• Strong leadership skills, ability to motivate staff and volunteers and bring people together;
• A broad understanding of charity finance issues;
• A good understanding of charity governance issues;
• Ability to make good use of technology to drive effectiveness.
The Chair must have an understanding of the challenges which parents face raising small children, be able to work well as part of a team, be self-motivated and not afraid of applying their skills to new areas.
The role of Chair is a crucial role in guiding the Trustee Management Board and the governance of the Charity. The Chair must also establish and build a strong, effective and constructive working relationship with the Scheme Manager and staff team. The Chair holds regular supervision meetings with the Scheme Manager around every 6 weeks. HSES is one of 269 Home-Start Schemes within the UK, operating in accordance with policies and guidance provided by Home-Start UK. We have an annual budget of around £100,000 with 88% of this going on staff salaries and rent. Funding and fundraising continue to be challenging in the current climate, and we need to find solutions to change our over-reliance on one main source of funding. The role of Chair is challenging, but the holder can make a significant difference to the performance of the organisation and the lives of the families we support.