New chair for Otesha

24th May 2014 by

Otesha needs a new chair of our board of trustees, to take on the challenge of leading a non-hierarchical organisation.

We’re looking for a chair with excellent facilitation skills, who’s into making non-hierarchical organisational structures work and supporting charities in a strategic and governance way. Although the staff team at Otesha has a flat structure, as a charity we still have a board who have overall responsibility and so need to approve, and take responsibility for, all the big decisions.The board ensure the charity is well run and support our staff team to achieve Otesha’s aims.The chair will take on additional responsibilities of facilitating board meetings, ensuring the board acts well as a team together and being a spokes person for the organisation.

Otesha mobilises young people to adopt more sustainable lifestyles and become inspiring leaders on climate change, social justice and ethical consumption. Since 2007 we have worked with thousands of young people aged 11-28 from a diversity of backgrounds across England, Wales and Scotland. We work with young people and schools; organise educational cycle tours around the UK which resemble a two-wheeled sustainability circus; and work to combat growing youth unemployment by helping young people find their way into fair, decent and meaningful green jobs.

The role of the chair:
– Facilitate board meetings
– With staff and other trustees facilitate and participate in quarterly strategy days
– Ensure strategy is developed by the staff and trustees in strategy days, board meetings, staff meetings and by working groups
– Keep the board functioning well as a team and ensure all board members are fulfilling their roles
– Review board performance
– Recruit and induct new trustees as necessary
– Oversee staff team appraisals
– Maintain a risk register for the charity
– Be a spokesperson for the Otesha Project UK

Commitment required:
- To attend bi-monthly board meetings and quarterly strategy days
– To participate in board working groups and additional meetings with the staff as needed
– Be willing and able to take on tasks between board meetings, and communicate over email between meetings
– Able to commit to this role for a minimum of 2 years

Please apply if:
– You’re interested in non-hierarchical structures and want to support this one|
– You love what Otesha does and stands for
– You have time for occasional evening and weekend meetings
– You get that being a trustee is quite a bit of commitment (you take on legal and financial responsibility for Otesha) and are only a little bit fazed by that

To apply: please send a CV and covering letter telling us why you want to be a trustee for Otesha to jo@otesha.org.uk by Monday 30th June. (Interviews will take place early July with a new chair invited to our next board meeting on 21st July, 6.30pm)
If you think this is you, but aren’t totally sure about it, email me (jo@otesha.org.uk) and we can arrange a time to chat about it.

Please note: The Otesha Project UK is an equal opportunities organisation and encourages applications from underrepresented groups. We do not discriminate on the basis of ethnicity, place of origin, class, citizenship, system of belief, gender, sexual orientation, language, marital status, family status, physical and/or mental disability. However, all employees (and trustees) will be chosen on merit.

Trusty trustees

7th March 2013 by

Since leaving the Otesha staff team in 2012, I’ve been on the board of trustees. So far it’s been pretty good: I’ve kept in touch with my Otesha friends; still had a say in the development of the organisation; worked alongside other trustees from backgrounds I wouldn’t come into to contact with in my usual life (like lawyers); eaten a lot of biscuits and humous (not together) and learnt loads.

We’re looking for more fabulous people to join our board of trustees.

Although the staff team at Otesha has a flat structure, as a charity we still have a board who have overall responsibility and so need to approve all the big decisions.

Here’s why you should think about joining the Otesha board:

  • You learn a lot about how a small charity operates
  • You get to help develop our strategy
  • You get to be involved in supporting a small team and working out how a flat structure can be most effective
  • We’re all nice people here
  • It looks great on your CV, not that that’s a good reason to become a trustee, but it looks good on your CV for a valid reason because you learn a LOT
  • Otesha is a wicked little charity. We’re 5 years old now which means in some ways we’re quite stable and know some stuff, and in other ways we’re dynamic, up for new ideas and still figuring lots out
  • We have nice biscuits and humous (not together) at our meetings

We’d particularly like to sit round a board table with people who bring some relevant skills but are also wanting to develop new ones by being a trustee, for example you could be wanting to learn more about the charity sector and bring skills from another sector.

Get in touch if:

  • You’re interested in non-hierarchical structures and want to support this one
  • You love what Otesha do
  • You’re willing to commit one evening a month to meetings, plus a bit of time in between supporting staff or preparing for meetings, and one strategy weekend each year
  • You get that being a trustee is quite a bit of commitment (you take on legal and financial responsibility for Otesha) and are only a little bit fazed by that

It would definitely help if you have any of the following:

  • Experience or an interest in any of the areas of Otesha’s work (like green jobs, young people, cycling, sustainable living etc. etc.)
  • Know the East London communities we work in
  • Experience in finance or fundraising
  • A solid strategic head on you
  • A background or interest in HR, staff development and mentoring
  • Experience of or an interest in consensus decision making and flat structures

So it’s a real commitment, but one that shouldn’t be too scary, and the effectiveness and dedication of the board members has a real impact on Otesha. Board members have the opportunity to make a positive difference to Otesha and to the people we work with, and a contribution towards our aims. And if we all do it well, we won’t be bored in board meetings.

Download more info: Otesha trustee role description2013

If you think this is you, but aren’t totally sure about it, email me  (jo@otesha.org.uk) and we can arrange a time to chat about it.

To apply: please send a CV and covering letter telling us why you want to be a trustee for Otesha to alice@otesha.org.uk
Deadline: 28th March 2013


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