Volunteers are crucial to delivering the support that Carers Link provides to carers, but there’s one group of volunteers that are often unsung – the members of our Board of Trustees, and we need more.
As a trustee with Carers Link you will not be directly involved with providing support to carers, but you will work with our Chief Executive Officer to make sure that Carers Link has a clear strategy, and that our work and goals are in line with our vision.
Sandra Wilson is one of our trustees and says. “I initially got involved with Carers Link because in my working life I met someone every week who had taken on a caring role, and didn’t know about the help and support available to them. I saw the stress that they were under and how it was making their life harder than it needed to be. I had already had various volunteer roles with Carers Link, and then I was asked if I had thought about becoming a member of the board. Despite my background working in health services and the voluntary sector I hadn’t thought about it, and thought I wasn’t qualified enough. I was encouraged to apply, and am very glad I did. As with many volunteering roles I have got more back than I put in – new friends, new skills, and being connected with my community. I was also able to use the knowledge I gained to recognise the high level of stress that other family members were experiencing due to their caring role, and to offer them support.”
Rob Kay is the current chair of Carers Link. He became a trustee because “I had taken early retirement and I wanted to keep my brain active. I wanted to do something local and accessible, and I believe that the support that can be provided by local organisation is important because of the face to face contact they provide to people. I hadn’t worked with a local organisation before, and I wanted to see how it worked – you only have one life so it’s important to go on learning.”
Sandra and Rob both come to the end of their terms of office soon, and so Carers Link are looking for new board members. People of all backgrounds and ages are encouraged to apply. Meetings are every 2 months meaning that this role can be fitted in around part-time or freelance working, caring, or holidays. There is reading involved, but this can be done at a time that suits you. With the difficult financial environment that we are working in at the moment we are particularly looking for people with experience of fundraising or management, but we would love to speak with anyone who wants to find out more.
If you believe that carers should be able to have the best quality of life for themselves alongside their caring role, enjoy working collectively and confidentially, and want to help a local charity, call Jennifer at Carers Link on 0800 975 2131 or contact Jennifer@carerslink.org.uk.