New Voices: Fresh Perspectives

New Voices: Fresh Perspectives

New Voices: Fresh Perspectives
A Recruitment Programme for Young People on Arts & Heritage Boards

• Are you between 18 and 30 and care about the arts and heritage of Scotland?

• Would you like to get your voice heard on how they are run?

• Are you interested in joining the board of cultural charity?

If you have answered yes to these 3 questions - or you have young colleagues or friends, or access to wider networks of young people who would - then read on.

What: Arts & Business Scotland (A&BS) is working in partnership with the William Grant Foundation to deliver New Voices: Fresh Perspectives; a recruitment programme to place young people on arts & heritage boards. This will recruit 12 young people (aged 18-30) in early stages of their careers and from a wide range of sectors, on to the boards of cultural charities.

Why: Young people are under-represented on cultural boards, and any cultural organisation that wishes to remain relevant, must include young people in the decision making processes. Arts and heritage sector charities in Scotland recognise the need to change the dynamics of their current boards, to address equalities, inclusion and diversity and have a representative voice of the stakeholders, beneficiaries, target audiences and users that their organisations service and support.

Who: We would welcome applications from young people from a range of professional and social backgrounds; arts workers and volunteers, young professionals, students and recent graduates. A&BS also recognises its responsibility to support equality, diversity and inclusion more widely in the cultural sector, and welcomes applications that strengthen the diversity of cultural boards across Scotland.

Outcomes: 12 young people will develop new transferable skills, gain governance experience and knowledge through the placement programme. The boards of the arts and heritage organisations undertaking the training and recruiting the young trustees will be able to place equalities, inclusion and diversity at the core of their mission, aims and objectives by benefitting from the skills, knowledge, perspectives and fresh outlooks of the young people involved.

Learning content: The young people will take part in training over two days designed to develop their skills and confidence to engage in board business, which will include governance training sessions covering:

• What is a charity?
- the roles and responsibilities of trustees and how they differ from professional staff;
- the board and artistic issues;
- the difference that trustees can make;
• Understanding board business;
- Effective meetings and looking at board papers;
- Understanding finance for charity trustees;
• How to make your voice heard;
- decision making at board meetings;
- board dynamics.

Placement meetings and follow-up: A&BS will facilitate the introductory meeting/s between the arts or heritage organisation and the young board member, ensuring that the match is appropriate and then remaining in touch with both parties over the following 6 months as part of our duty of care. These meetings will run concurrently with the training programme, and then continue until all are placed.

Commitment: That participants are prepared to join the board of a cultural charity, and to commit to carry out the duties that involves.

Board members are usually a trustee of a charity and/or a director of a company. This carries with it certain responsibilities. In particular, a charity trustee has a statutory duty of care to the charity on whose board s/he sits to exercise such care and skill as is reasonable in the circumstances. 

As a board member you will be expected to attend regular board meetings - typically 4 to 6 times a year, as well as occasional other events and meetings. Each organisation will have its own typical meeting times; some during the day and some in the evening. Part of the matching process will be to ensure that the meetings of the board you eventually join are at a generally convenient time for you.

Personal Attributes of Board Members:
An enthusiasm for the work of the organisation and a commitment to be well informed about its work;
A commitment to carry out the duties of a Board Member;
The ability to work as a member of a team, and a willingness to state personal views and, equally, to accept a majority decision whatever one’s personal view of the matter;
A preparedness to offer personal and professional skills and experience to support the work of staff when required;
A willingness to act as a champion for the organisation;
The ability to treat sensitive information confidentially

Application process: The application form can be downloaded below.


Monday 16 March 2020
Deadline for submission of applications to the programme

Monday 30 March 2020
Applicant interviews in the offices of Arts & Business Scotland and by skype as necessary.

Successful applicants will be notified by Friday 3 April 2020

Friday 24 and Saturday 25 April
Two-day workshop sessions at the offices of
Arts & Business Scotland, Rosebery House, 9 Haymarket Terrace, Edinburgh, EH12 5EZ

During May and June 2020
Matching meetings between programme participants and prospective boards.

£200 per person (+ VAT), if you are employed by a commercial organisation. 

However if you are employed by a charity or not-for-profit organisation, are in education, self-employed, or are not in employment or education, you can apply for a bursary to cover the costs of the programme.

Bursaries are also available for all candidates with travel costs from outwith the central belt, and an accommodation allowance will be available to support one overnight stay in Edinburgh on Friday 24 April.