Join our Trustee Board

Our Organisation

The Tower Hamlets Neighbourhood Watch Association (THNWA) is part of the largest grass-roots movement in England and Wales, working to prevent crime and reduce the fear of crime, and support local initiatives to build stronger and better-connected communities.

We are the Borough Association for the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. We are closely connected to the National Neighbourhood Watch Network, better known as Ourwatch with a Memorandum of Understanding.

Our organisation comprises of individuals who are either registered on Ourwatch and/or members of active Neighbourhood Watch groups, also registered on the Ourwatch website.

We represent all those who are known to us and want to be connected with Neighbourhood Watch.

Our Board

Our voluntary trustee board is responsible for ensuring the charity is well run and is held accountable for:

  • Pursuing its charitable objectives and complying with its Constitution, charity law, and any other relevant legislation or regulations
  • Applying its resources wisely to achieve impact and value-for-money
  • Demonstrating its values and maintaining public confidence in its reputation
  • Working strategically by setting policy and defining goals and targets and measuring its impact.

The board monitors the work of the CEO (yet to be appointed) and acts as a “critical friend” through support and constructive challenge. The Board aims to hold 4 routine meetings each year, usually via video conference. We also aim to develop a regular meeting routine in person to discuss developing strategy and report to members. There are also board committees for more detailed work on finance and resources and on working with the local community and service provision.

We are now looking to recruit new trustees to our board and we recognise that increasing the diversity of our board so that it better reflects the communities we serve will help us do a better job as a charity. We are therefore very keen to involve young people, people from the LGBTQ+ community, those with lived experience of disability or who have been victims of crime, as well as people from different cultures and ethnic backgrounds. We will support people for whom this would be their first trustee role to learn about the responsibilities of trusteeship. We are also aiming to strengthen our board in a number of functional areas (see knowledge and Experience section below).

Personal Characteristics

To become a trustee of the THNWA you need to be able to demonstrate that you

  • Support the values and ethics of the Neighbourhood Watch movement and act with integrity, including handling sensitive and confidential information
  • Are willing to learn about the work of the charity and the role of a trustee, and to commit the time needed for the role (on average about 8 hours per month)
  • Are able to read reports, analyse information and exercise good judgement and use of evidence in making decisions
  • Have good knowledge of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets
  • Will contribute to the board and committees by reading reports, attending regularly and participating in discussions by active listening and challenging constructively where necessary.

Knowledge and experience

You don’t need to have specialist knowledge or experience to apply, but we are also keen to hear from people who can help us with fundraising and income generation, or who have experience of marketing and communications and can advise us on engaging with broader and more diverse audiences, including better use of social media. We are also seeking someone with knowledge of charity finance (or with general accounting knowledge who would be willing to learn about the charitable context). We would also like to have one trustee on our board with knowledge of policing and public safety in England and Wales and trends in policy development, especially in Greater London and Tower Hamlets in particular.

How to apply

To apply, please submit a short letter (up to two sides of A4) explaining your interest in becoming a trustee and what you could contribute to the THNWA, accompanied by your CV. These should be emailed to admin@thnwa.london by Sunday 5. June 2022. If you would like to have an informal discussion before applying please email Johanna.kaschke@thnwa.london who will arrange a call with our chair.

If your application is successful, we will need to check that you are eligible to be a trustee but provided you are over 16 years of age and have not been disqualified from acting as a company director or convicted of an offence involving dishonesty or deception, you will probably qualify.

We look forward to hearing from you.  Martin Shortis (Chair of the Board)

 

Trustee Role Description

  1. Introduction
  2. Tower Hamlets Neighbourhood Watch Association (THNWA) is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (#1194477) that acts as the umbrella organisation for the voluntary crime prevention movement in Tower Hamlets.
  3. THNWA is governed by a board of between 3 and 12 trustees who are initially co-opted by the board, through open recruitment and interview to asses their fit with the person specification (section 4). They then stand for election by the Charity’s members at the next Annual General Meeting. The THNWA Constitution requires one-third of the board to retire at each subsequent AGM but retiring trustees may stand for re-election up to a maximum limit of three consecutive terms.
  4. THNWA’s work is delivered by the elected officers of the committee comprising of Chair, vice-chair, Secretary, treasurer. We have yet to appoint a CEO. The functions of the team are to: support the organisation, volunteers and Watch groups; develop and share good practise; fundraise for THNWA and the organisation; develop training and support for volunteers; develop and deliver strategic aims of the borough movement; develop policies and guidance tailored to the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. This is all done in liaison with the members of the Association.
  5. Charitable Purpose
    1. THNWA aims to reduce crime and the fear of crime by supporting grass-roots community initiatives that partner with the police, other public services and the voluntary sector. By promoting good citizenship and encouraging public participation, this work helps people be safer and contributes to greater community cohesion and resilience.
  6. Duties of Trustees
    • Ensure that THNWA complies with its Constitution, charity law and any other relevant legislation or regulations
    • Ensure that THNWA pursues its objects as defined by its Constitution
    • Ensure THNWA’s financial stability
    • Ensure THNWA applies its resources exclusively in pursuance of its objects
    • Safeguarding THNWA’s good name and  values
    • Providing strategic direction to management by setting overall policy and defining goals and targets, and exercising oversight and scrutiny in evaluating delivery of he strategy.
    • Oversee the work of the CEO, setting their remuneration and personal objectives and evaluating their performance, and acting as a ‘critical friend’ to the CEO through support and constructive challenge
    • Ensure that the board operates in the interests of the Neighbourhood Watch Network itself and of any of its members in particular the Tower Hamlets Neighbourhood Watch Association, or other groups, or of external bodies

In addition to the above statutory duties, each trustee should use any specific skills, knowledge or experience they have to help the board of trustees reach sound decisions. This may involve leading discussions, identifying key issues, providing advice and guidance on new initiatives, and evaluating or offering advice on other areas in which the trustee has particular expertise.

The Charity Commission publishes a guide to The Essential Trustee, which provides more detailed information

  • Person specification
    We recognise that increasing the diversity of our board, so that it better reflects the communities we serve will help us do a better job as a charity. We are therefore very keen to involve young people, people from the LGTBQ+ community, those with lived experience of disability or who have been victims of crime, as well as people from different cultures and ethnic backgrounds. We will support people for whom this would be their first trustee role to learn about the responsibilities of trusteeship.

To become a trustee of THNWA you need to be able to demonstrate that you

  • Support the values and ethics of the Neighbourhood Watch movement and in particular the Tower Hamlets Neighbourhood Watch Association (THNWA) and act with integrity, including handling sensitive and confidential information. You should also demonstrate a commitment to equality and diversity and an understanding of the factors that can limit inclusion
    • Are willing to learn about the work of the charity and the role of a trustee, to commit the time needed for the role (on average about 8 hours a month) and to abide by the charity’s policies and including confidentiality, data protection and safeguarding
    • Are able to read reports, analyse information and exercise good judgement and use of evidence in making decisions
    • Will contribute to the board and committees by reading reports, attending regularly and participating in discussions by active listening and challenging constructively where necessary
    • Can identify and understand where conflicts of interests may arise and ensure they are reported and managed
      While you don’t need specialist knowledge to apply, in this round of recruitment we are also keen to hear from people who can provide leadership to the board in the following areas:
    • Fundraising and income generation, particularly from grant making bodies in the public sector and from charitable trusts and foundations
    • Marketing and communications, especially in how we can engage with a broader and more diverse audience, including better use of social media
    • Knowledge of charity finance, or with general accounting knowledge who would be willing to learn about the charitable context.
    • knowledge of policing and public safety in England and Wales and trends in policy development, especially in Greater London and Tower Hamlets in particular.
  • Eligibility
    As a Charitable Incorporated Organisation we can accept people as trustees who are aged 16 or over. You must not have been disqualified as a company director removed from a position as a charity trustee, have an unspent conviction for an offence involving dishonesty or deception (such as fraud) or be an undischarged bankrupt
  • Time Commitment
    • The board normally meets quarterly with an additional AGM and another strategic meeting(s). Meetings are scheduled on weekdays afternoons or evenings and are a mix of online and in person meetings in Tower Hamlets.
    • New trustees are expected to participate in an induction program and to undertake training in any areas in which they require development.
    • Trustees are also expected to be available for discussions between board meetings via email or telephone and to participate where possible in working groups and committees where their expertise is relevant
    • Trustees may also occasionally be asked to represent the board at public events, meetings of local groups or with the charity’s partners
    • Overall the minimum time commitment of trustees would equate to around 10-12 hours per month (with additional time required of officers such as the Chair, vice-chair, treasurer and secretary, MSA)

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