What does it mean to be a charity trustee?
28 September 2015, by Zoe Cunningham
I’ve been volunteering with Ghanaian charity Ashanti Development for nearly 7 years. Ashanti Development was started when Martha Boadu came to England from Ghana. Her plan was to save money that she earned for working so that she could personally pay to install clean water into her home village of Gyetiase. She teamed up with her neighbour in London, Penny David and they quickly found that this was achievable. Luckily lots of people believe in this as a goal and so they raised the money and put in a piped water system.
Following on from this they continued to received grants and expanded their work to include building latrines, hygiene training, health and micro-credit and economic development. They also expanded geographically to help the villages surrounding Gyetiase. In 2013 Softwire sponsored the local village of Bonkron and we continue to provide support to them. (We just built a kindergarten.)
This year Penny asked me to become a Trustee of the charity. As a trustee, I attend board meetings and help make the executive decisions of the charity, to make sure that it is fulfilling its objectives and delivering as well as it possibly can. Like being a director of a private company, I am now (jointly with the other directors) responsible for ensuring that the charity is complying with the law and completing any necessary paperwork.
It’s early days for me, but I’m delighted to be able to contribute more to the charity, using skills that I have developed in my business career. As a trustee I do of course continue with all my other activities to support the charity – Softwire are going on a trip to visit Bonkron for the first time in January 2016.