Role Summary

The role of the Chair is to provide leadership and direction to the Board of Trustees. The Chair’s aim is to enable the board to fulfil their responsibilities for the overall governance and strategic direction of the organisation.

The Chair will ensure that the organisation complies with its governing document, charity law, company law and any other relevant legislation or regulations and to make sure that the organisation pursues its objects as defined in its governing document.

The Chair's role is also to optimise the relationship between the Board of Trustees, Kingston Mencap staff and Kingston Mencap members.

In addition to the general responsibilities of a Trustee, the Chair has a number of tasks specific to their role.

Main Responsibilities of the Chair

  • Providing leadership for the board of trustees in their role of setting the strategy and policy of the organisation.
  • Chairing and facilitating the board meetings.
  • Maintain a clear grasp of the charity’s financial position and to ensure full and timely financial transparency and information disclosure to the Board.
  • Representing the organisation at appropriate events, meetings or functions.
  • Acting as a spokesperson for the organisation where appropriate.
  • Lead the Board in fostering relations with potential funders/donors.
  • Consult with Kingston Mencap staff on matters of strategy, governance, finance and HR and oversee charity activities in the context of the implementation of Board’s strategy and policies.
  • Maintain careful oversight of any risk to reputation and/or financial standing of the organisation.
  • Receive informal progress reports of the organisation’s work and financial performance through Kingston Mencap staff, and use this to update the Board.
  • Appraising the performance of Kingston Mencap’s staff.
  • Attending and being a member of other committees or working groups when appropriate and available in role as Chair

Qualities of a Chair

  • Commitment to the organisation.
  • Leadership ability.
  • Integrity, strategic vision and good/independent judgement.
  • A willingness to devote the necessary time and effort to their duties as Chair and trustee.
  • Ability to take decisions for the good of the organisation.
  • Good communication skills.
  • Tact and diplomacy.
  • Willingness to speak one’s mind and listen to the views of others.
  • An ability to work effectively as a member of a team.
  • Understanding of the legal responsibilities and liabilities of a trustee.

Desirable experience

  • Prior experience of committee/trustee work.
  • Knowledge of the type of work undertaken by the organisation.
  • Demonstrate understanding/knowledge of people with learning disabilities, either personal or professional.
  • A wider involvement with the voluntary sector.

Time Commitment

  • The Board meets every other month at the Searchlight Centre, Kingston Rd, New Malden, Kingston upon Thames KT3 3RX
  • It is important that the Chair is able to visit the charity office on a semi-regular basis
  • From time to time, the Chair should be available to attend and represent the charity at events, meetings or functions in the day and evening times.

NB: This position is not remunerated but reasonable out of pocket expenses incurred fulfilling the duties of the role will be reimbursed.

If you would like to apply for the role please send a short C.V. and a brief covering letter to recruitment@kingstonmencap.org.uk.

To chat informally about the role, please email trustees@kingstonmencap.org.uk and we will arrange an informal chat with a trustee.