From 13th – 17th November, it’s National Trustees Week, highlighting the important role of Trustees in guiding and supporting Scotland’s charity sector. Each day we’ll be highlighting the stories of Trustees from across the LGBT+ community and the vital role they have in driving forward equality in Scotland.

David Townsend, Chairperson, Dumfries & Galloway LGBT Plus

“I am wary when I hear people say that they want to be a trustee or a volunteer because they ‘want to give something back’. I am a trustee, and Chair, of D&G LGBT Plus because I am passionate about the support and advocacy of the LGBT community.”

“Being a trustee is, at times, challenging. It requires a cool head, patience, and tolerance. But it also allows individuals to influence and affect the well being of others. One of the highlights of my role as Chair of D&G LGBT Plus was working with representatives of our public services and the third sector in organising a local Pride event earlier this year.”

“Being a trustee allows me to meet a very wide range of people: from our own service users to representatives from our local public services; from our staff and my fellow trustees of the charity to representatives of local and national government. It allows me, along with my fellow trustees, to influence local and national policy decisions. It allows me to help others find a place and value in our wider society, which might otherwise elude them. It is a tremendous privilege to see people emerge from reclusive and isolated lives to engage with and serve the wider community.”

“Trustees bring a wide range of experience to their charity. Sometimes they bring specific skills such as financial or organisational expertise. But all trustees bring their own life skills and lived experience, as well as a voice, to the organisation they represent.”

“If I have any advice to would-be trustees, it is to think about what you are passionate about – and then to find a vehicle where you can fulfil your passion.”

Trustees are the people in charge of a charity. They help to make the UK the sixth most giving country in the world. There are around 180,000 trustees in over 24,000 charities operating in Scotland. They play a vital role and make important decisions about a charity’s work.
Charities in Scotland are regulated by the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR). Their Chief Executive, David Robb said:
“In my six years as OSCR Chief Executive, I’ve been fortunate to see the huge impact that comes from the hard work of dedicated trustees. The 180,000 trustees of Scottish charities make an enormous difference to communities across the country, volunteering their time and working together to lead the strategic direction of their charities.”
“We encourage anyone who is a trustee, or who is interested in becoming one, to participate in Trustees’ Week. Many people are booked to attend events held throughout the country that highlight the significant impact of their work and provide practical advice on how someone can become a trustee themselves – but there are opportunities to participate online too.”
“As always, it is a privilege for OSCR to be involved. It is a brilliant opportunity to highlight the great work that goes on in charities and to show the ways in which people can get more involved in the Sector.”

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