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Trustee for Parents 1st UK charity (in set up process) - Open Source platform


Parents 1st is currently a CIC (trading name of Strengths in Communities CIC). It was founded in 2008 and specialises in effective and sustainable early prevention peer support during the critical life transition of becoming a parent. A happy and responsive parent means a baby's development will flourish. Every parent deserves support and every baby deserves the best possible start in life. The approaches we use are based on clear and strong evidence of what works across the UK and other countries too.

We empower parents, communities and families to do more for themselves and their children through building strong trusting peer relationships.

Volunteer programmes currently operate in South Essex, Tower Hamlets and Derby and Parents 1st is well known as a brand on a national level.

We are seeking four additional trustees for a new Parents 1st Charitable Incorporated Company at this point in time. This is now being set up with the sole purpose of operating an "Open Source" platform. The ethos is totally philanthropic with the aim of creating an on-line community that enables new and existing peer support programmes to flourish and network with each other. Thousands of free resources will be shared with all interested parties. We will not only be sharing all the knowledge and documentation we have gathered since inception free of charge, but also encourage new partnerships and innovation. The platform will address several user groups, such as new and existing peer support programme leaders, social enterprises, charities, public sector commissioners, academics, field practitioners, parents and volunteers.

Overview of the trustee's responsibilities

At present, the new CIO is in the process of being set up. We are looking for four new trustees who, in time, might consider taking on additional responsibilities as treasurer, secretary and chair when current trustees retire. The new trustees will be required to contribute to the ongoing development of the charity in particular to:

  • Take an active part and contribute to board discussions and decision-making, thus supporting the board of trustees and the Chief Executive;
  • Prepare for and attend board meetings and any other occasional meetings as appropriate;
  • Be available to undertake some occasional additional work as required;
  • Enhance clarity and commitment to the vision, ethos and strategic direction of the charity keeping the vision of sharing good quality peer support at the centre of Parents 1st UK work from the outset;
  • Set, direct and review the strategic direction and business plan;
  • Set and maintain high standards of governance, compliance and financial probity;
  • Enhance financial sustainability;
  • Maintain operational and financial efficiency.

Essential skills and experience required

  • Vision of sharing good quality, evidence-based peer support and commitment to the Parents 1st peer support model and volunteering;
  • Commitment and passion for the work and ethos of Parents 1st, with the ability to keep the vision of sharing good quality peer support at the centre of Parents 1st work;
  • Willingness and ability to devote time to the governance and promotion of the charity;
  • Strategic vision and successful business planning experience;
  • Ability to think and act creatively, demonstrating forward thinking and good judgement;
  • Understanding and acceptance of the legal and compliance duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship;
  • Ability to lead, motivate, inspire and work effectively as a member of the board and the wider team;
  • Willingness to engage with the wider voluntary sector and other networks.

All trustees must commit to the seven principles of public life: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.

Desirable skills and experience required

  • Experience as a finance director or treasurer for a similar organisation;
  • Successful fundraising experience;
  • A good understanding of law, for instance, due to previous work in a legal environment;
  • A clear understanding of charity law and experience with legal questions around charities;
  • IT skills;
  • Social media skills;
  • Marketing and PR experience

Requirements from applicants

  • Up to date CV;
  • Short covering letter outlining how the applicant's skillset, knowledge and experience match those outlined in the job description and reason for interest in the role;
  • Names and contact details of two referees (at least one of them must be a current/previous manager).

Terms and conditions

  • This role is unremunerated but reasonable expenses will be paid;
  • Trustees are required to be able to commit sufficient time for this role. There will be an average of four trustee meetings annually, as well as an away day and potentially a business planning day in London.

Application deadline and contact details

  • For an initial or informal discussion, please contact Brenda Bond (01767 601641 or or call the office on 01268 525758);
  • To apply, please submit your CV and a short supporting statement to Melanie Eichhorn-Schurig, CEO, at
  • Deadline: 30th October 2019;
  • Interviews will be held for the shortlisted candidates (face to face in London or Basildon).