Chair of Trustees

Closing Date: 30th Sep 2021

Employment Type: Volunteer

Rainbow Home is a small but committed charity which supports lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans* and queer people who live in the North East of England and who are seeking asylum in the UK because they are at risk of harm, persecution, imprisonment or death in their country of origin. We provide person-centred holistic support as our services are tailored to the specific and sensitive needs of our members. We help them with their basic needs as well as supporting them through the complexities of their asylum journeys and ensuring that they have somewhere to turn during this difficult time. Rainbow Home is currently recruiting a new Chair of the Board of Trustees.

Applications from BAME, RAS AND LGBTQ+ communities are welcomed and encouraged.

Overall Responsibilities

  • To ensure that the organisation complies with its governing document (i.e. memorandum and articles of association), charity law, company law and any other relevant legislation or regulations.
  • To ensure that the organisation pursues its objects as defined in its governing document.
  • To ensure that the organisation applies its resources exclusively in pursuance of its objects (i.e. the charity must not spend money on activities which are not included in its own objects, no matter how worthwhile or charitable those activities are).
  • To regularly attend (as far as reasonably practicable) and to contribute actively to the management committee role in giving firm strategic direction to the organisation, setting overall policy, defining goals and setting targets and evaluating performance against agreed targets.
  • To safeguard the good name and values of the organisation.
  • To act as an appeals panel in respect of the organisation’s formal complaints procedure for customers or clients.
  • To ensure the effective and efficient administration of the organisation, and to enter into contracts on behalf of the organisation.
  • To ensure the financial stability of the organisation.
  • To protect and manage the property of the charity and to ensure the proper investment of the charity’s funds.
  • To appoint paid staff and monitor their performance.
  • To determine and review from time to time appropriate staffing structures for the organisation, and to employ staff in accordance with such structures.
  • To act as an appeals panel in respect of both grievance and disciplinary matters relating to employees.


In addition to the above statutory duties, each trustee should use any specific skills, knowledge or experience they have to help the Management Committee reach sound decisions. This may involve scrutinising Committee papers, leading discussions, focusing on key issues, providing advice and guidance on new initiatives, or other issues in which the trustee has special expertise.

Chair’s Responsibilities

  • Leading the committee and the organisation to enable it to fulfil its purpose.
  • To ensure an effective relationship between:
    • the committee and the staff/volunteers.
    • the committee and external providers of line management/staff supervision.
    • the committee and the external stakeholders/community.
  • Acting as a spokesperson and figurehead as appropriate.
  • To supervise and support the head of staff.
  • Plan and prepare the committee meetings and the AGM with others as appropriate.
  • Chair committee meetings ensuring:
    • A balance is struck between time-keeping and space for discussions.
    • Business is dealt with and decisions made.
    • Decisions, actions and deliberations are adequately minuted.
  • The implementation of decisions is clearly assigned and monitored.
  • Ensure adequate support and supervision arrangements are made for the head of staff and any other staff/volunteers directly managed or reporting to the committee.
  • Ensure that a successor is found before the term of office finishes.



  • A commitment to supporting Rainbow Home as an organisation and its work.
  • A willingness to devote the necessary time and effort to carry out the chair tasks.
  • Strategic vision and sound, independent judgement.
  • Professional, confidential, and boundaried attitude in relation to ethical policy and practice matters in discussion and to sensitive content.
  • A willingness to lead the organisation.
  • Tact, diplomacy and powers of persuasion.
  • Relevant knowledge.
  • Relevant skills to run a meeting well.


Skills and Abilities

  • An understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship.
  • Able to think creatively and work collaboratively with others.
  • Able to communicate constructively and effectively as a member of the team.
  • Able to maintain a wider perspective as well as pay attention to detail.
  • IT competent.



  • Sound understanding of equality, equity and diversity issues, and commitment to supporting anti-discriminatory practice.
  • Understanding of key systemic and structural barriers including racism.
  • Understanding of intersectionality.
  • Understanding of the Rainbow Home ethos, values and ways of working.
  • Knowledge of local RAS, BAME and LGBTQ+ communities and networks.
  • Cultural awareness and sensitivity.
  • Understanding of the UK asylum system and its impacts.



  • Commitment to Nolan’s seven principles of public life: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.
  • Willingness to undergo DBS checking process if required.
  • To be prepared to disclose and discuss any potential conflict of interest arising from trustee role and professional/personal roles.


See further document produced by Charity Commission in February 2020 outlining who can and cannot become a trustee and other requirements. A Trustee Fitness to Practice Form will need to be agreed and signed.

Application Process

In order to apply, please submit your CV and a short covering letter stating why you wish to join the organisation, what skills and experience you will bring to the Board and including any other relevant information.

Initial applications will be followed by an informal conversation, an opportunity to observe a Board meeting, and possibly shortlisting and an interview if there are multiple candidates. Candidates will be asked to certify that they are not disbarred as a company director or charity trustee.

Please email your application to:

If you would like to find out more information about the role and/or to arrange an informal conversation, please do not hesitate to contact us via email.

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