News

We are seeking a Treasurer

Would you or someone you know be able to help? Being a charity trustee is a very rewarding voluntary role.

About Play Midlothian
Play Midlothian is a small registered charity (no. SC025474) and company limited by guarantee (no. SC240729), which started in 1996, and has an office in Dalkeith, Midlothian.

We work to support children to flourish, though improving and increasing their opportunity to play. We focus on play because we know how much this benefits children’s health, wellbeing and development. It is important for their lives in the here and now as well as for their future life chances.

We aim to

  • Provide enriching opportunities for children to play in support of their health, wellbeing and development
  • Build family, community and professional capacity to support play
  • Advocate for play and inform and influence decision-making

In the past year, we provided services attended by over 1,600 individual children and young people, 60 organisations and 800 individual adults.

About Play Midlothian’s board
The board is comprised of up to 12 trustees (who are legally also company directors).

We recruit trustees both through our existing membership and through advertising, with the aim of ensuring a balance of service user participation and access to a range of skills and knowledge that would be useful to the board in fulfilling its remit.

The board is non-executive in its role, in that it is not involved in direct service delivery, rather it is there to review, guide, advise and oversee, ensuring that the staff team is performing well and is supported.

Responsibilities of the Treasurer
All trustees collectively have responsibility for Play Midlothian, with day to day management delegated to staff. The legal responsibilities for each trustee, under the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act (2005), are to:

  1. Act in the interest of the charity: Trustees should put the interests of their charity before their own interests or those of any other person or organisation.
  2. Operate in a manner consistent with the charity’s purposes
  3. Act with due care and diligence
  4. Ensure that the charity complies with the provisions of the 2005 Act and other relevant legislation.

Play Midlothian has identified the key responsibilities of its trustees as:

  • To contribute to setting the vision and overall strategic direction for the organisation
  • To ensure good financial planning, agreeing the income generation strategy and budgets
  • To ensure that income and expenditure levels are regularly compared to agreed budgets and that variances are identified and explained
  • To manage, safeguard and protect the assets and resources of Play Midlothian and ensure that they are used only for the purposes set out in Play Midlothian’s governing document
  • To oversee the development and delivery of Play Midlothian’s business plan, including monitoring and reviewing progress against agreed activities and outcomes
  • To promote a culture of evaluation and learning within Play Midlothian and with its stakeholders
  • To manage and safeguard the reputation of Play Midlothian and oversee the strategy for external and stakeholder relations
  • To ensure that Play Midlothian adheres to its own values, particularly in relation to service users, volunteers, staff and other stakeholders
  • To ensure a commitment to equalities throughout the policy and practice of Play Midlothian

Financial administration is carried out by the staff team. The Treasurer plays a watchdog role, advising staff and the other trustees, including:

  • Maintaining an overview of the organisation’s financial affairs
  • Helping to identify risks
  • Ensuring proper financial controls are in place
  • Ensuring appropriate investment policies are in place
  • Ensuring that the annual accounts are prepared in accordance with regulations
  • Reporting on the annual accounts to the AGM
  • Acting as a counter-signatory for payments
  • Carrying out once per month sampling of the books

Skills sought
We would like to hear from people with a track record in financial roles, for example:

  • Finance officer
  • Banking officer
  • Accountant

Time commitment
As a minimum, you need to be able to commit to:

  • Frequently attending board meetings, of which there are approximately six per year (every two months, on a weekday evening, for two hours)
  • Participating in the finance and HR subgroup, which meets as and when there are matters to discuss in more detail than there is time for at a board meeting (usually no more than twice a year)
  • Attending infrequent development or strategic planning sessions (usually no more than once per year)
  • A monthly visit to the office to sample the books (which should take no more than one hour)

From time to time other short life working groups may be established by the board to progress particular pieces of work. In addition individual trustees may agree to work closely with member(s) of the staff team on a specific issue, depending on their own skills and areas of expertise.

More widely trustees are expected to advocate on Play Midlothian’s behalf using a wide range of networks and may become involved in supporting and representing Play Midlothian at fundraising or other events.

Expenses
Trustees are not paid for their duties, but are able to claim the cost of travel to and from meetings (within reason) and other appropriate expenses.

Training and induction
Trustees will receive an induction to enable them to understand Play Midlothian, what we do, how we work and the role of the trustees and board. In addition, trustees are offered ongoing opportunities to access training on the role of a charity trustee and other topics. Trustees are also offered opportunities to get to understand the impact of Play Midlothian’s work better, which may include; shadowing staff, attending staff team meetings, meeting service users and volunteers, or linking more closely with one specific team or area of activity.

PVG
As Play Midlothian is a children’s charity, trustees must be PVG checked before they commence their role. If you are not already a member of the PVG scheme, you will need to join (which Play Midlothian will administer and there will be no cost).

Next steps
For more information about Play Midlothian please visit www.playmidlothian.org.uk.

For a chat about the role and nomination process, please contact Susan McIntyre, Development Manager, on 0131 663 2243 or at susan@playmidlothian.org.uk.

We would ask you for a CV or a biography. The next step would be a meeting with the Development Manager and Chairperson to discuss your interest in the position and what you can contribute. Following that, if both parties wish to proceed, a nomination would go forward to the board to consider at their next meeting. Trustees co-opted by the board would also go forward to the next AGM for ratification by Play Midlothian members.

Name change

In this, our 21st birthday year, we have changed our charity’s name from Midlothian Association of Play to Play Midlothian, to give the organisation a strong and clear identity going forward.

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