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The NewBridge Project is looking for new Trustees to join our Board.

Posted: 30 May 2022

NewBridge is looking for enthusiastic and dedicated individuals to join our growing Board of Trustees, to help us build on our diversity, knowledge and skills. We are looking for a range of experiences and expertise, including a treasurer.

Join the Board of Trustees at The NewBridge Project!

The NewBridge Project is an active artist-led community that supports artists, curators and communities through the provision of space for creative practice, curatorial opportunities and an ambitious artist-led programme of exhibitions, commissions, artist development and events.

We create ways for audiences to engage with the creative process, while nurturing artistic & curatorial practice in an engaged and discursive community.

We engage people inside our building, off-site and through digital platforms, connecting with people in our new neighbourhood of Shieldfield, the North East and nationally.

We shape our work in response to artists’ and communities’ needs and interests, through creative collaborations and consultations, and we aim to be a genuine community resource.

We are looking for a dedicated and enthusiastic people to join our Board of Trustees at an exciting time of genuine growth for our organisation.

Over the past couple of years, our programmes have expanded and we have moved out of the city centre into Shieldfield. Our newer initiatives include For Solidarity, a network of north east climate and social justice projects; Create/Disrupt, which offers opportunities for non-university/traditional education routes into the arts, and a range of community activities in our new location of Shieldfield, including a youth programme. New Trustees will support NewBridge to build on our diversity, knowledge and skills.

We value both work and lived experiences in our Trustees and you don’t have to have been on a Board before – we’re more interested in the experience you bring and your interest in supporting NewBridge and the work we do. We will ensure you are supported to understand the role by our current Trustees and staff, and through training.

We are committed to developing more diverse representation, and for our Trustees to reflect the communities we engage with through our work. We especially welcome and encourage applicants from people who are d/Deaf or disabled, and/or are of the global majority* who are underrepresented on our Board.

*Global Majority is a collective term that refers to those who make-up 80% of the world’s population. By ‘global majority’ we refer to those of the following backgrounds; African or Caribbean heritage, South Asian heritage, East Asian heritage, West Asian heritage, Central Asian heritage, South East Asian heritage, East Asian and South East Asian heritage, Middle East and North African heritage, and those who have experienced racism. By the term ‘those who have experience racism’, we are referring to individuals who have experience discrimination based on the colour of their skin, race and/or their culture.

Please download the Trustee and / or Treasurer information pack for more information.

The Trustee Information pack has everything you need to know about being on our Board, has details on how to apply, and how to get in touch with us if you have any questions.

Theres is a separate Information Pack for the role of Treasurer which has further information about NewBridge’s financial management and the responsibilities of this role.

 

Call Out for Board of Trustees

Rebecca Huggan chats with Dan Russell about our call for new Trustees at The NewBridge Project!

About being a Trustee

What we’re looking for in a Trustee:

  • An enthusiasm for and commitment to be well informed about the work and ethos of The NewBridge Project.
  • 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 convictions and, equally, to accept a majority decision and be tolerant of the views of other people.
  • 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 NewBridge Project.
  • The ability to treat sensitive information confidentially.

Commitment of Trustees: 

  • Attend quarterly Board Meetings: the Board meets four times a year and we would expect Trustees to attend a minimum of three of these meetings. (You can join meetings in person at the Shieldfield Centre, or virtually).
  • Meetings are planned to be no longer than three hours
  • Attend one annual ‘away-day’ with other Trustees and staff
  • Prepare for Board Meetings by reading board papers send in advance – this will usually take 1-2 hours in the week prior to a meeting
  • Advocate for The NewBridge Project at specific events and meetings
  • Provide support/guidance to the Director and staff team (when necessary) between Board Meetings. This may include small group working in between meetings, or one-to-one work.

Once accepted, Trustees serve an initial 3-year term which can be renewed twice (maximum 9 years) – however there is no official minimum time limit and Trustees can step down at any point as necessary.

All Trustee roles are unpaid. We support expenses to cover travel, childcare and access costs, and aim to hold meetings at times that can accommodate our Trustees’ work, family and personal circumstances. Recently our meetings have been held after 4pm on a Monday but time and day is flexible and will likely vary as we bring in more Trustees.

NewBridge is a company limited by guarantee with charitable status governed by a Board of Trustees and managed by a staff team who oversee day-to-day operations.

The Board steer the governance of NewBridge, ensuring it operates within its agreed aims, objectives and values. Trustees meet at quarterly Board meetings where they review operations and progress through written reports, management accounts and organisational risk register, annually reviewing policies and business plan. Trustees also actively engage both collectively and individually outside of board meetings, supporting the staff team 1-to-1 and through sub-groups.

Even though many duties are delegated to staff, the Board must make clear decisions about such delegation; the ultimate responsibility for every aspect of the Company’s operation lies with the Board of Trustees. It is therefore important that all Board Members ensure that they understand the history of The NewBridge Project and its current situation and keep abreast of other issues that might affect the company.

 

  • A Treasurer: We are looking for a treasurer, who, alongside the general responsibilities of Trustees, will support NewBridge to ensure the organisations finances are appropriately managed and that we maintain satisfactory systems in respect of legal, operational and financial risk management, and who will review and approve management accounts and Year End Accounts for presentation at Board Meetings.

 

  • Experience of living and working in Shieldfield or other residential neighbourhoods: We relocated to the Shieldfield Centre in May 2021 and have a five-year lease (up to 2026). We employ a Community Coordinator and Youth Worker who are building relationships with local residents and community groups, and we collaborate with Dwellbeing on the Shieldfield Youth Programme which began in 2020. We hope that the building, with its public spaces, bookable rooms, workshops, memberships schemes, bookshop and events will become a positive community resource. We are keen to include local representation on our Board to ensure our relationship to the area and the people who live here runs through the core of our work, or alternatively someone who has experience of running projects for communities in residential neighbourhoods.

 

  • Alternative routes to employment and education: Over the past year we piloted Create/Disrupt, a new programme aimed at people with no creative degree, people who are underrepresented in the sector, and those who might face barriers to developing a career in the arts or as an artist. Following the pilot, we have secured funding to continue the programme and are committed to this being one of our key, permanent strands of artist development to ensure we are developing and improving pathways toward careers in the creative sector/making art. We have also offered training fellowships and apprenticeships to further support people to start a creative career.

 

  • Experience of inequalities within the visual art sector: We know that there are huge inequalities within the culture and creative sectors, particularly prominent in the visual arts. The trustees and staff at NewBridge are collectively working towards better understanding the barriers that exist within our organisation and the wider contexts we exist within and are committed to making necessary and embedded change as an organisation. We recognise that we currently have a lack of diversity in experience and background at a governance level and addressing that needs to be part of this change.

 

  • Social and/or climate justice work: We are committed to environmental and sustainability across our organisation, programme and building. Through programmes such as For Solidarity we advocate for climate and social justice, and we want to ensure that we are embedding environmental responsibility in the way we run our buildings and work with studio members.

 

  • HR: We want to ensure that NewBridge’s HR policies and practice are robust and adhered to and would be looking for a Trustee to support on HR matters, through providing knowledge and guidance around employment, recruitment, policy and practice.

 

  • NewBridge Member: Our members have always been the backbone to our work. We currently have 93 studio members, 53 associate, 5 hot desk members, 33 Collective Studio and 10 Create/Disrupt members. We always ensure we have at least 2 Trustees who are also members to ensure this core group is well represented on the Board. You will bring an awareness of your own experience as an artist and having NewBridge membership and will be happy to attend member meetings to gather feedback to bring to the Board meetings.

 

Further to this, if you have experience not included in the list above but feel you have something to bring to NewBridge, then please do get in touch!

We are looking to meet the right people for these roles, so please do get in contact with us to arrange an informal conversation with our Chair, Ilana Mitchell, if you would like to find out more.

How to Apply

There is no deadline, and this opportunity is rolling.

Please get in touch with us to find out more about becoming a Trustee at NewBridge.

To apply please send your application to Ilana Mitchell, Chair of the Board of Trustees on chair@thenewbridgeproject.com

We have a number of different ways to apply for this role. You can do this through:

  • A single PDF document containing the information outlined below
  • A video or audio file containing the information outlined below
  • A mixture of written and video or audio application (eg. an audio application but written Equal Opportunities Form)

In your application – please include:

  • A CV (including your name, address and contact information)
  • A statement on why you would like to be a NewBridge Trustee and what skills, experience and knowledge you would bring to the role
  • Equality & Diversity Monitoring Form (available to download from our website)

Have questions or want to get in touch?

If you would like to discuss the role further, understand more about what’s being a Trustee involves or have any questions, then please contact Ilana by email on chair@thenewbridgeproject.com

Both Ilana and NewBridge’s Director Rebecca Huggan, are available to meet in person or virtually to have a conversation before making an application.

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