CMSS was set up in 1952 and is both a company and a charity. It provides community based day services to disabled adults, primarily adults with either a physical impairment and/or a learning disability.
Trustees of CMSS are a member of the Executive Committee which is responsible for the overall governance of the company and charity. Under the company’s Articles of Association the Executive Committee should have a minimum of 7 members and a maximum of 14 members and the Articles outline the rules by which the company is run.
A Trustee has responsibilities in law and is required to behave appropriately as set out in the six principles below. It is not a role that suits everyone but it is a very worthwhile role and usually attracts those with an interest in running a business or with direct experience of the business.
The time commitment is a minimum of monthly evening meetings and in addition a business strategy day once a year, held at the head office premises in Northwood hills. Financially the commitment is to be a member of CMSS which costs £5 per year, and providing the trustees take decisions appropriately their liability is capped at £5.
CMSS provides an opportunity for prospective trustees to spend some time with current trustees, attending meetings and generally getting to understand the work of CMSS with help from the senior management team. We will then discuss whether or not a co-option on to the Executive is the right opportunity for the prospective trustee.
Support is available at all times and specifically during the induction period. As a company director, your details (Trustee = Director) will be a matter of public record held at Companies House. You will also have to have an advanced Criminal Records Bureau check as you will have contact with vulnerable adults.
Six key principles for Trustees
An effective board will provide good governance and leadership by understanding their role.
An effective board will provide good governance and leadership by ensuring delivery of organisational purpose.
An effective board will provide good governance and leadership by working effectively both as individuals and as a team.
An effective board will provide good governance and leadership by exercising effective control.
An effective board will provide good governance and leadership by behaving with integrity.
An effective board will provide good governance and leadership by being open and accountable.
Taken from “A Code for the Voluntary and Community Sector”
The Code Steering Group provides stewardship for the Code. It is made up of representative of the original founders, the Association of Chief Executive Officers (ACEVO), Charity Trustee Networks (CTN), the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA), the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) with support from the Charity Commission and an independent chair.
If you would like to know more about being a Trustee please contact the centre on 0208 866 3711and ask for our Chief Executive Officer, Mrs Betty Morris.