With only 0.5% of trustees currently between the ages of 18-24, a guide has launched to help charities recruit young people.
It has been launched by Our Bright Future, a partnership led by The Wildlife Trusts and funded by The National Lottery Community Fund. Input on its development also came from Our Bright Future partner organisations, including Friends of the Earth, UpRising, Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust and Field Studies Council.
The Young Trustees Advice Pack contains templates, resources, and real-life examples to help organisations take the first steps in recruiting and inducting young trustees and benefit from greater diversity at board level. Legally, anyone can become a company director at 16 and a trustee at 18. It also shares stories of success from others already on this journey from across the Our Bright Future network.
Ellie Brown, a young trustee at the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust, said:
“Having young people involved in an organisation’s decision-making processes can have a positive effect, as young people bring in new ideas, have different priorities and offer a different perspective. They can also challenge the way the organisation engages with young people, so it becomes easier for young people to become involved with the organisation.”
The release of the Advice Pack comes a few weeks before the publication of the Our Bright Future Final Evaluation Report, which will include a learning paper about young people working in governance. This paper will share how Our Bright Future’s youth-led approach has influenced youth governance and leadership across many organisations. It will explore ways that involvement in the programme may have influenced organisational processes for involving young people in leadership and decision-making.
On 26 July, Our Bright Future is also hosting a Zoom event that will look through the new Young Trustees Advice Pack and explore how to take the next steps in diversifying a board. Participants will hear from guest speakers including Grace Corn, a trustee at Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust, and Pip Sayers, General Council at Woodcraft Folk. They will be discussing their experiences, followed by an interactive Q&A session.
Cath Hare, Programme Manager, said:
“Overall, 19 organisations involved in Our Bright Future stated that they have established, or are planning to establish, youth governance more widely in their organisation. We hope more organisations will follow in this direction and champion the power of youth voices.”