If you are a Board of Trustees of an arts or heritage organisation or charity in Scotland that recognises the need to bring more diverse voices to your decision making processes, then read on!
One of the main concerns for board diversity is the lack of young trustees, given that the average age of a trustee is around 60 years old.
The Charities Aid Foundation estimates that while 18-24-year-olds make up 12% of Britain’s population, only two per cent of charities have young people on their board. Whilst a survey shows that 85% of people under 35 would consider becoming a trustee.
In addition, ‘Taken on Trust’ research published by the Charity Commission (2017) highlighted that 92% of trustees are white, further highlighting the diversity issue.
Will this stand the arts and heritage sector in good stead for the future?
With those figures in mind, it is clear that arts and heritage charities in Scotland should be exploring more ways to recruit young people.
Arts & Business Scotland (A&BS) is working in partnership with the William Grant Foundation to deliver New Voices: Fresh Perspectives; a recruitment programme to place young people on arts & heritage boards. This will recruit 12 young people (aged 18-30) in early stages of their careers and from a wide range of sectors, and prepare them for their role on the boards of cultural charities.
The benefits of young trustees
• They provide a different insight and perspective, which leads to better governance;
• They bring new ideas and fresh perspectives to your board to challenge long standing beliefs and systems;
• They help to engage younger people with your work and develop the next generation of potential arts and heritage sector leaders;
• If your beneficiaries include young people, they can provide useful insight and perspectives on beneficiary needs and increase the board’s credibility in the eyes of this group.
“From the boardroom to the workshop spaces, Toonspeak’s young people majestically influence, challenge and inspire what we do and why we do it. It could not and should not be any other way.”
Jodie Wilkinson, Chairperson, Toonspeak Young People’s Theatre
If this is a priority for your organisation, then click here to find out more about the programme and a simple trustee placement request form to register your interest.
Please note that this opportunity is FREE to arts or heritage charities registered in Scotland.
Deadline for return of trustee placement register of interest form – 16 December 2019.