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Volunteering at Scouts is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing at Scouts. Read more

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Blog | 16 May 2023

Scouts Trustee elections are just around the corner

Kate Marks, Scouts Trustee

Have you thought about standing in the upcoming Trustee elections? One of our brilliant Trustees, Kate Marks, tell us why you should.

My work colleague’s suggestion that I should stand to be a Scouts Trustee caught me by surprise. He’s a well-respected senior volunteer in Scouts and I work as a senior leader in the public sector.

I’d been volunteering with Scouts for a couple of years as a Group Scout Leader, but I was still trying to figure out which badge goes where, and life was quite busy.

We chatted about what I could bring to Scouts’ Trustee Board from my professional life and volunteering experience.

It sounded interesting, so I raised it with my District Commissioner, expecting that he’d gently tell me to focus on being a Group Scout Leader. But instead, he thought it was a good idea, and encouraged me to go for it.

Kate Marks, Scouts Trustee, stands in front of bushes with sunlight behind her. She's smiling at the camera and she's wearing a navy Scouts polo shirt with a red, blue and white necker.
Kate Marks, Scouts Trustee

I got in touch with the wonderful Scouts Governance team. I asked, ‘Most of your current Trustees seem to have been born wearing a woggle. Would someone newer to Scouts be out of place?’ The team reassured me that some Trustees were entirely new to the movement and they said it’d be great for me to apply.

Why I wanted to join

One of the things that attracted me to being a Trustee was being able to see both sides of the movement (volunteering and behind the scenes), and I felt like I could contribute to both. This has also helped me become even more of a strategic thinker.

I was also keen to see how the Scouts Board of Trustees worked as a ‘national organisation, delivering locally,’ since I’m a senior leader in a similarly structured government agency. While helping Scouts, I thought being a Trustee might help me in my day job, too.

Being a Trustee

Trustee roles at Scouts involve a lot of strategic planning and decision making. We work as a team to set the vision and direction of our movement, making sure we’re staying true to Scouts mission and values.

We also keep an eye on finances to check we’re using our resources effectively and efficiently. We also join specialist committees that support the Trustee Board – in my case, the Safety Committee.

The Scouts Board of Trustees stand together in a line, all wearing navy polo shirts and red, white and blue neckers. They're smiling at the camera and standing in front of a TV screen showing the Scouts logo in white on a purple background.
Scouts Board of Trustees

A rewarding opportunity

One of the most rewarding parts of being a Trustee is the opportunity to make a real difference to young people’s lives.

Especially as someone with experience in the youth sector, I understand just how important it is to give young people opportunities to learn, grow, and develop.

Through Scouts, we can do just that. As a Trustee, I help make sure we’re giving our members the best possible experience.

But, there’s more to being a Trustee than making a difference in the lives of young people. It can also be a personally and professionally enriching experience.

In the six months I’ve been a Trustee, it’s been incredibly rewarding to build relationships with other volunteers, people from diverse backgrounds and with different skillsets, both in the UK and internationally.

The rewards far outweigh the challenges

Of course, as with any role, being a Trustee can have its challenges. You’ll sometimes need to give quite a bit of your time, and be prepared to chat about and deal with tricky issues.

That being said, the rewards far outweigh the challenges. I truly believe that anyone with a passion for making a difference in the world should consider standing for election as a Trustee.

If you have questions, like I did, reach out to the existing Trustees or Governance team. They’ll be more than happy to help and share their experiences and insights with you.

Being a Trustee is so much more than ticking boxes on a CV. It’s a chance to make a real difference in the world, and be part of a community of people who’re passionate about creating positive change.

If you have the passion, take the leap and stand for election. You won't regret it!

Fancy becoming a Trustee?

If you think you'd like to join our fantastic Board of Trustees, visit our nominations page to put your name forward. 

Nominate yourself
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