Become a Trustee
In 2014, against the backdrop of ever increasing participation in the annual UniBrass contest, a decision was made to form a new registered charity. That charity, the UniBrass Foundation, was established to ensure the continuing stability of the UniBrass contest (now in its 10th year), and to support brass banding at university level. The UniBrass Foundation is now looking for new trustees, and it could be you!
What does the charity do?
The UniBrass Foundation engages with the brass community in a variety of ways. Our biggest commitment is supporting the UniBrass contest organising committee, but recently we have also hosted other events, such as this year’s UniBrass in the Park. We also help out at other brass contests throughout the year, which have previously included the National Championships and Youth Championships. The charity aims to support and promote university bands in all that they do, as well as engaging the wider public in university brass bands of all levels. We hope that by pursuing these objectives we will get more younger players involved in brass bands than ever before. To facilitate this, the charity is currently in the process of expanding the work it does through a range of new projects and partnerships.
How does the trustee board work?
The trustee board has historically been made up of ex-members of the contest organising committee, however we are now looking to expand and recruit external people with no previous involvement in UniBrass. Chair of the Board of Trustees, Andy Straiton, commented, “We know there are lots of people in the brass banding community and beyond who are keen to support the work UniBrass does, and lots of people will be able to offer a range of skills that can help continue the success achieved so far by UniBrass. If you are at all interested, please have a chat to one of the current trustees!”
How can you apply?
Applications are open, but not just to students and alumni! Everyone is encouraged to consider applying if they’re keen to continue supporting the ever-growing student brass band community. Being a trustee offers an exciting opportunity to help shape the future of university brass banding. In particular, the Foundation is keen to hear from people with commercial experience, ideally within the arts sector. Whether the experience is in securing corporate sponsorship, successfully applying for grants or simply being involved in professional music-making, if you have that experience the Foundation want to hear from you.
What does being a trustee mean?
As a trustee you have legal responsibility for ensuring the charity meets its charitable aims as outlined in the constitution. This involves attending meetings of the trustee board and running projects to support university banding. Other duties required of trustees will depend what responsibilities you take on as a trustee, the role will evolve around the successful applicant to work to their strengths.
Does this involve running the UniBrass contest?
No – a separate organising committee run the contest. The Foundation oversee the work this committee does as well as running other projects. However, it is expected that you’ll volunteer to help out at the contest each year.
What is the legal responsibility of a trustee?
As a trustee you take a share of the legal responsibility for the decisions the charity makes. There is lots of guidance available, and we make sure that all trustees understand the legal ramifications before we take a decision. If you want to find out more, we have found the following guide really useful:
What is the time commitment of being a trustee?
Typically we have four full day face to face meetings a year, along with online meetings approximately once a month. You should be able to attend most of these (especially the face to face meetings) and then put in some extra work on top of this (approx 1-2 hours per week). We understand your time commitments vary and we therefore all work together to ensure that if you’re busy for a while other people will help out with any tasks you have.
Will I be paid for being a trustee?
No – it is a voluntary position, however you will be reimbursed for expenses occurred whilst carrying out your duties as a trustee.
Can anyone be a trustee?
No. Whilst most people are eligible, there are some people who are not, for example if they have serious criminal convictions or have been disqualified from being a company director. See the charity commission website for more details
How else can I get involved?
If you want to support UniBrass, but don't want the responsibility or commitment of becoming a trustee, you can also join the UniBrass Family! There is no requirements or commitments to become a member, but joining the family gives you volunteering opportunities, keeps you up to date with our latest news, and more.
What is the appointment process?
Applications are made by submitting the Google form (linked above) and a cv. All applications are reviewed by a panel of UniBrass Foundation trustees. Suitable candidates will be invited to a short face to face interview with a panel of trustees. Following this, the current board of trustees will confirm successful candidates offers by vote at the next meeting, before applicants are offered a trusteeship.
Any further question please contact our recruitment email address.
What are we looking for?
The current trustees have drawn up the following person specification for a new trustee.
The successful candidate is likely to meet almost all of the following criteria:
Can demonstrate an active participation in music that goes above and beyond simply playing an instrument
Can demonstrate clear support of the Foundation’s charitable aims
Can dedicate a reasonable amount of time to the role, including set dates provided well in advance, in line with our Trustee expectations
Can work as an effective member of the Trustee board
Confident in using ICT to enable remote working
A successful candidate may have experience in one or more of the following, however if you meet the essential criteria please do not worry if you don't feel any of the below apply to you, we would still love to hear from you!
Working in commercial music
Marketing music events/organisations
Success in grant applications (ideally for arts causes)
Building business to business relationships, ideally including securing commercial sponsorship
Experience of project management and execution, ideally within the arts sector
Knowledge and understanding for non-profit business models