Taff Rocks is looking to recruit new trustees

On this page, you will find all the information you need to enable your trusteeship to be a success. If you have questions that are not listed here, remember to ask your nominated trustee.
And remember: The only dumb question is the question you don't ask!

Trustee Board Member Role Description

The Board of Trustees is responsible for the management of the affairs of Taff Rocks and the Smyrna venue. It conducts its business through its meetings and sub-committees and follows agreed processes and procedures. It produces reports to funders and to the Charity Commission and.

This is an unpaid role. Reasonable expenses, e.g. travel costs, reimbursed. 

• Be diligent and sensible in the administration of their duties
• Keep within its charitable objects and powers
• Maintain confidentiality and exercise proper discretion at all times in regard to the affairs of Taff Rocks and Smyrna
• Observe all policies /procedures agreed by the Board in day to day and strategic matters
• Actively participate in promoting the work and image of Taff Rocks and Smyrna to the wider community
• Provide the necessary information to comply with the requirements of regulatory and other statutory bodies
• Comply with the Charity's code of conduct, conflict of interest policy and professional standards by behaving in a professional manner at all times and promoting the charity’s policies including Equality and Diversity
• Respond sensitively to the needs of older people as members, service users or in the wider community in the carrying out of Board plans and policies

In addition to the above statutory duties, each trustee should use any specific skills, knowledge or experience they have to help the board of trustees reach sound decisions. This may involve leading discussions, identifying key issues, providing advice and guidance on new initiatives and evaluating or offering advice on other areas in which the trustee has particular expertise.  

Trustees are required to maintain contact regularly with the rest of the board and respond to messages and emails in a timely fashion.

Each trustee must have:

• A commitment to the mission of Taff Rocks and Smyrna
• A willingness to meet the minimum time requirement
• Integrity
• Strategic vision
• Good, independent judgement
• An ability to think creatively
• An understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship
• An ability to work effectively as a member of a team and to take decisions for the good of the charity 

The board of trustees collectively needs skills and experience in the following areas:

• Financial management
• Income generation
• Business development and marketing
• Charity law and governance
• Digital strategy and communication
• Human resource management
• Building management
• Collaborative partnerships
• Social investment and impact

Four full board meetings a year (2 hours’ duration in the evenings), one or more evenings for strategy meeting plus two hours for the presentation of the annual report.

In addition, trustees are encouraged to join a subcommittee or working group to further the work of the charity. These usually meet at Smyrna (occasionally Skype or MS Teams is used ).

Attendance at the general and extraordinary general meetings, emergency extraordinary general meetings, strategy meetings and other such meetings as and when required.

Trustees are expected to keep up to date with the board as well as documents and contribute to email and WhatsApp discussions where face-to-face is not an option.

Trustees are encouraged to take the lead in certain areas of the running of Taff Rocks, for example: ensuring all training is up-to-date, HR, fundraising etc

Trustees are invited to participate in induction sessions, volunteers and volunteer events, external gatherings with stakeholders and an annual meeting with the Chair. 

Where are meetings held? Currently they are held at Smyrna, Aberfan. However, the current board will consider moving over to online meeting in order to become more inclusive.

Required for contact outside of face-to-face meetings: Skype* and WhatsApp

Whilst there is a minimum period where trustees are asked to commit to, there is no end period. This means that, after one year, trustees may retire if they wish or remain on the board for a longer period.

*Currently considering an MS Teams option 

(1) The trustees check that the candidates have not been disqualified from acting as trustees, and candidates are asked to confirm in writing that this is the case (trustee eligibility form).

(2) Candidates are asked to consider and declare any existing or potential conflicts of interest. This is completed at the start of the probationary period then annually, usually in January.

(3) Taff Rocks work with children or adults at risk, the trustees seek any appropriate checks from the Disclosure and Barring Service.

(4) In the light of the checks and declarations, the trustees decide to go ahead and formalise the appointment of new trustees.

• Clearly defined voluntary role within the organisation
• Provide induction, information and training to enable you to carry out your role effectively
• Support your development within the role and your personal development by offering appropriate induction, training and feedback opportunities
• Provide you with the policies, procedures and standards of the organisation in relation to your role
• Provide an accessible complaints procedure
• Out of pocket expenses

Forms required to be completed:

What's in it for me?

We don't just 'throw you in at the deep end', we get to meet with you to see if you like us. If you are happy to come work with us as part of our team, we go through an induction programme with you where you will gain "insider" knowledge about Taff Rocks and have all your questions answered. To ensure we have all made the right decision, yourself included there is probationary period. After all, if this is not for you, we don't want to force you to stay.

In addition: 

  • We value input and listen to every board members point of view. We accept that not everyone agrees but, with Taff Rocks as the priority, challenges and different opinions are beneficial for Taff Rocks.
  • We will support you as we support each other.
  • There are development opportunities
  • You will be assigned a mentor from the board of trustees (or select one from the board for yourself)
  • Out of pocket expenses are paid
  • Becoming a trustee will benefit your CV
  • By volunteering in this way, you can benefit by: Gaining confidence, making a difference, meeting new people, learning new skills, taking on challenges and having fun. 

By becoming a trustee, you can be part of an organisation that supports members of the County Borough of Merthyr Tydfil. We support our communities by helping them gain confidence and skills with their creative and wellbeing process. 

During the probationary, all potential trustees are assessed on:

  • Completion of tasks in a timely manner
    These are usually included on a 'tick list' to help with completion
    Tasks include, among others:
    Completion of important documentation (see above)
    DBS checks
    Sight of essential Taff Rocks documents
    Trustee training (see below)
  • Interaction via WhatsApp or email:
    Keeping in touch is essential both during the probationary period at during trusteeship 
  • Attendance at monthly reviews
    Potential trustees undergoing their probationary period will be asked to attend monthly reviews to ensure that things are going well, discuss training, IT tasks eg setting up email etc where assistance will be given.
    Potential trustees can also schedule one-to-one meetings with their 'nominated' person / coach
  • Trustee Training
    Includes tasks to ensure you make an informed decision about becoming a trustee as well as understanding your role.
    A part of this training includes:
    Guidance from the Charity Commission: The Essential Trustee - what you need to know, what you need to do.
    Completing the free, online Trustee Training Modules provided by ICAEW

Why am I being asked to do so much?

We have a responsibility to ensure you have sufficient and correct knowledge and understanding of what is expected of a trustee.

By ensuring you have all the information you need, you are in a better position to make an informed decision regarding trusteeship.

In our infancy, we found that we weren't fully aware of all our responsibilities and expectations.
Over time, and with help and support of others, we have gained the knowledge, skills and understanding of the expectations and the importance of passing those on to prospective trustees.

Being a charity trustee means that there are certain legal responsibilities that are required to the Charity Commission, stake holders and the communities we serve.
Having the information beforehand and allowing you to make an informed decision will prevent you from taking on 'more than you bargained for' and will prevent us from registering a trustee that will leave all too soon.

Regular and sustained interaction and participation, at meetings, via WhatsApp or email, will increase your confidence and show commitment to your role as a trustee.

Some 'tasks' are simple. For example:

- Viewing the insurance documents and knowing where they are.
- Viewing the day-to-day accounts and knowing where to access them.
- Viewing the Health and Safety policies and documents and knowing where they are and how to access them.
- Attending meetings.
- Regular and sustained interaction online and in person.
- Setting up your allocated email address.

To ensure you have access to, complete essential tasks and get help where needed, we ask that you attend a monthly informal meeting. This will enable the trustees to answer any questions, help with tasks and ensure you are on the right track.
If you don't want to attend face-to-face, these can be arranged online. This enables your nominated trustee to pass on your progress to the trustees. If your nominated trustee does not have these opportunities with you, they have no evidence of your progress and nothing to report. Therefore, your probationary period may not be going well.

These informal meetings, even over a coffee, are an essential part of this period and your development.

Registered office:

Smyrna Chapel Community Hall,
Aberfan Road, Aberfan,
Merthyr Tydfil CF48 4QN

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Charity Registration
  • Taff Rocks is registered in England and Wales as a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO). Registered Charity Number: 1192749