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What can I expect as a new Trustee via RIAC?

Trustees are the lifeblood of charities, whether in the arts & culture sector or the charitable sector as a whole. They give their time in order to support the ideals and goals of the charity, to help the charity develop, and to ensure that it is well governed. A good Trusteeship should be hugely rewarding for the Trustee as well as beneficial for the charity.

The arts & culture sector is one of the massive success stories of the UK and the sector as a whole contributes £10.8billion a year to the UK economy (Arts Council England 2019 figures). There is increasing focus on the well-being benefits of taking part in arts & culture, and it can be a powerful tool for regenerating communities. Set against this backdrop it’s hard to see how anyone with time and skills to offer WOULDN’T want to get involved as a Trustee in the sector!

What is the commitment?
Charity Trustees usually meet around 4 times per year for a couple of hours. Prior to this, Trustees are expected to spend another couple of hours reading board papers and preparing for the meeting. Between meetings there may be ad-hoc opportunities when those working for the charity need to consult their Trustees – either just with an update, for example on ticket sales or the progress of a fundraising campaign, or to ask for views and input on a particular topic. All RIAC new Trustees are assigned a mentor with experience in the field, and it’s expected that you’d probably spend an hour, once a month, catching up with your mentor during the first year of a new Trusteeship. So all in all you’d probably be looking at a commitment of around 1 hour a week as a Trustee, spread out a bit unequally with some times busier than others.

If you’d like to find out more about the responsibilities of a Trustee, the Charity Commission’s The Essential Trustee is a good introduction.

If you’d like to know more about how RIAC matches potential Trustees, Arts Organisations and Mentors, you can find out more here.