Bethnal Green, Greater London

Voluntary

Job Description

We're looking for two amazing trustees to join our dynamic board. Could you support us as a Treasurer or to lead on the boards Fundraising strategy then we'd love to hear from you.

Magic Me is the UK’s leading provider of intergenerational arts projects. Our award-winning programme brings together younger and older people for mutual learning, enjoyment and benefit.

This is an exciting time to join Magic Me. In 2019 we plan to grow our activities, within our home borough of Tower Hamlets across London, and into the east of England, trialling new approaches to intergenerational community building, and delivering an organisational wide strategy.

A: ABOUT MAGIC ME

Magic Me arts projects challenge people to stretch themselves and what they think they can do and be. Working with highly skilled and experienced artists, they learn new skills, share their ideas and feelings, and become comfortable collaborating with people who are different in age, ethnicity or life experience.

All our activities are run in partnership with other organisations, large and small. We have delivered hundreds of projects with thousands of people in schools, care homes, galleries, museums, open spaces and community centres. We are a learning organisation - time for participants, artists and staff to reflect on their progress is integral to our approach.

This year Magic Me celebrates its 30th birthday, since its founding in 1989, Magic Me has pioneered intergenerational arts practice. Our story for the past 30 years has been one of innovation and constant evolution in the field of intergenerational practice. Based in Tower Hamlets, east London, Magic Me is growing to serve other communities in outer east London and the east of England.

Magic Me Charitable Objects:

To promote, maintain, improve and advance the education of children and adults towards a better understanding of ageing and the needs of elderly people, and methods by which those needs may best be met.

Mission and Values

Magic Me’s mission is to bring the generations together to build a stronger, friendlier community.

We do this by bringing together people of different ages as equals, with a shared creative purpose. For many, this is a new experience. Our activities provide a secure place in which to explore similarities and differences, and young and older people often find they have much in common. Creative activity is the focus for meeting and the process through which participants explore and share their ideas and feelings.

Finances

Magic Me is a registered charity with a broad funding base that punches well above its weight. Magic Me receives no core finding from public sources and relies on the generous support of a wide range of grant-making trusts, local authority grants, corporate supporters and individual donors . Our annual budget for 2019/20 is £519,667.

B: BECOMING A TRUSTEE

Who are we looking for?

Magic Me Trustees have a wide range of backgrounds, interests and experiences. Magic Me operates within many sectors and is keen to have a wide range of professional and community expertise from its Board, alongside excellent governance to support the charity to deliver on its mission and to safeguard its values.  

The aim of our board of trustees is to govern Magic Me and enable the charity to be the best that it can be, steadfastly focused on achieving its vision, mission and purpose, so as to transform the lives of the beneficiaries we serve.

We are looking for trustees who can support the chair and director with the leadership of Magic Me. 

You will act as an ambassador for Magic Me and promote our work at public event s and more widely within the sector. You will be happy to make and use connections to advance Magic Me.

Our board is currently made up of nine trustees and we are looking to increase this to ten. We are keen to create more diversity on our board and ensure we continue to represent the people we work with.

We are looking for new Trustees to participate in the governance work of the board, who have a range of skills and a commitment to supporting Magic Me in a very practical way. 

To complement current trustees we are particularly looking for people with experience in one or more of the following:

  • Participating in community arts
  • Charity finance
  • Charity governance
  • Fundraising

Our aim is also to have a balanced board, which includes people from the different communities, generations and cultures within which we work.

Legal position

Magic Me is a registered charity and trustees are legally responsible for its operations. Their role is to oversee the organisation, its staff and long-term strategic planning. Technically trustees employ the staff of Magic Me, who are responsible for most of the day to day running of the organisation. Trustees are also Directors of Magic Me Ltd, a company limited by guarantee.  This is a way of ensuring that no trustee who has fulfilled the duties of their role is personally liable should the organisation become insolvent or have to close. 

Magic Me’s public liability insurance covers everyone who works for Magic Me, whether paid or unpaid, and this includes Trustees while working on Magic Me’s behalf, as well as staff, freelancers and volunteers.

Trustees are elected at the AGM, usually held in October, by the members of Magic Me. Current Trustees may also co-opt new Trustees during the year between AGMs.

Practicalities

By law, charity trustees cannot be paid for their time and work. Trustees can claim reasonable travel, childcare or other expenses as necessary.

Time Commitment

Realistically to fulfil your role effectively, being a Trustee is likely to involve around half a day a month of your time.

  • Trustees meet formally four times a year, usually from 6 to 8pm on a weekday evening at Magic Me’s office in Bethnal Green. These meetings are held on different days of the week to accommodate people’s other regular commitments.
  • Magic Me has three sub-committees on which trustees can serve they are: Finance and Risk Committee, Fundraising Committee and HR Committee.
  • Papers for meetings are circulated by email at least seven days before the meeting.  Trustees are expected to prepare for meetings, having read and digested the papers in advance and be ready to contribute to discussions and decision making.
  • We also aim to hold an off-site away day each year to reflect on how we are working as a team, and to focus on big picture matters for the charity.
  • The AGM is held as part of Magic Me’s Annual Celebration, usually in October.

C: APPLICATION PROCESS

Role Descriptions & Person Specifications

A full role description and person specification for Trustee Board Members can be found in section D.  

How to apply

Attend one of our optional trustee drop in sessions, these are informal events where you can meet current trustees and ask any questions you may have about the role. Drop in sessions are being held at:

Poplar Union, 2 Cotall St, Poplar, London, E14 6TL:

5th September @ 6pm

Mulberry and Bigland Centre, 15 Richard St, London, E1 2JP:

12th September @ 2pm

You do not have to attend a drop in session in order to apply.

Treasurer and Fundraising Lead Trustee

Please send a short CV with a covering letter (maximum 2 sides A4) explaining which  role you are applying for, your interest in joining the Board and what you would offer to Magic Me.           

Sunday 15th SeptemberDeadline for applications

25th/26th September Interviews for Treasurer

30th September                                            Interviews for Fundraising Lead

November 2019 Observe a board meeting

January 2020 Formally serve as a trustee

Before being confirmed in post, all elected Trustees are required to undergo a vetting procedure which includes:

  • Two references.
  • Being checked by Companies House, to review eligibility to be a Director.
  • An Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service check, to ensure Trustees have no criminal record (including cautions and spent convictions) which makes them unsuitable for their role, within a charity working with children and vulnerable adults.

D: Trustee Board Member - Role Description & Person Specification

Trustee Board Member - Role Description

Aim: With trustee board colleagues, to govern Magic Me to enable the charity to be the best that it can be, steadfastly focused on achieving its vision, mission and purpose, so as to transform the lives of the beneficiaries whom we serve.

Leadership

  • Supporting the Chair to lead the organisation in partnership with the Director (Chief Executive).

Clarity of purpose

  • Ensuring that the organisation operates for public benefit and in the pursuit of its charitable objects.
  • Ensuring that the organisation functions within legal and accounting requirements, and in keeping with its constitution.
  • Determining overall policy, defining and upholding the values, and setting strategic direction aligned with the charity’s mission and purpose.
  • Monitoring overall organisational performance against agreed objectives and targets.

Cohesive Board

  • Working creatively, collaboratively, respectfully and effectively as a united board team, building trust and holding each other to account.

Relationships & probity

  • Serving as an ambassador for Magic Me, championing the charity at public events, and promoting Magic Me to funders and external stakeholders. 
  • Safeguarding the brand and values of Magic Me. At all times acting only in the best interests of the charity, conducting ourselves with utmost integrity and behaving in a truly open and accountable manner.

Considered decision-making

  • Ensuring prudent stewardship of Magic Me’s assets so that the organisation functions most efficiently and effectively in support of its objects.
  • Agreeing the annual budget, approving the annual accounts, and deciding on the allocation of significant resources.
  • Appointing the Director, defining the delegated authority of the role, agreeing performance targets and appraising the post-holder. 

Trustee Board Member - Person Specification, Personal Qualities and Behaviours

Motivation and style

  • Altruistic
  • Friendly and supportive, with a sense of humour
  • Shows humility and kindness

Capacity to lead

  • Committed to Magic Me, its mission, values, board, staff and beneficiaries.
  • Devotes enough time and care to the organisation
  • Clear about the role and governance task.
  • Committed to working strategically and focusing on the ‘big picture’.
  • Able to discuss contentious matters, and challenge appropriately and supportively.
  • Capable of collaborating, influencing, and appreciating success.

Personal attributes

  • Confident
  • Open
  • Thoughtful and able to analyse information.
  • Reflective, self-aware, seeking feedback and striving to develop.
  • Willing to seek advice and support where needed.
  • Good listener
  • Organised, focused and able to prioritise.

Ability to relate

  • Calm
  • Flexible
  • At ease with people of all types
  • Impartial, open-minded, fair and a champion of diversity.

Ability to advance the organisation externally

  • Willing to make and use connections to advance the organisation

The Trustee person specification was adapted from Lesirge & Oakley, The Association of Chairs (2014), based on research by Harrison and Murray (2012)

Company Secretary: The General Manager currently holds this role and is legally responsible for ensuring Company records are kept and filed with Companies House as required by law.

APPENDIX 1 – SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES FOR TREASURER

In addition to the role outlined above for all trustees the treasurer chairs the finance audit and risk committee and has the following specific duties.

  • Overseeing, approving and presenting budgets, accounts and financial statements and presentation to the board. Highlighting any concerns/issues.
  • Being assured that the financial resources of the organisation meet its present and future needs
  • Ensuring that appropriate accounting procedures and controls are in place and advising on improvements to the existing process
  • Ensuring that the charity has an appropriate reserves policy
  • Acts as the second signatory on payments and application to funders where required
  • Liaising with any paid staff and volunteers about financial matters
  • Advising on the financial implications of the organisation's strategic plans
  • Ensuring the organisation's compliance with legislation
  • Ensuring equipment and assets are adequately maintained and insured
  • Ensuring that the accounts are prepared and disclosed in the form required by funders and the relevant statutory bodies, e.g. The charity commission and/or the registrar of companies (note these are prepared by the external auditor)
  • Liaison if required with the external auditor on any year end adjustments
  • Keeping the board informed about its financial duties and responsibilities
  • Contributing to the fundraising strategy of the organisation
  • Making a formal presentation of the accounts at the annual general meeting and drawing attention to important points in a coherent and easily understandable way

Treasurer person specification

  • Qualified accountant with commercial awarenness and knowledge
  • Ideally have familiarity with the Charity SORP
  • Commitment to the organisation
  • Willingness to devote the necessary time and effort
  • Strategic vision
  • Good, independent judgement
  • Ability to think creatively
  • Willingness to speak their mind
  • Understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship
  • Ability to work effectively as a member of a team