Are you able and willing to look after the accounts and finances of a small but very active disability charity? BuDS is seeking a Treasurer to play a key role in the future of this successful and dynamic charity.
BuDS is a deliberately lean charity, with no employees and small income and expenditure. Our turnover varies between £15 to £25,000 pa and we have about 100 transactions pa. We derive our income from a mixture of small grants, consultancy fees and some voluntary giving. We tend to live hand-to-mouth without reserves, long-term financial stability or goals, which makes the monitoring and reporting role of the Treasurer very important.
Our working style is informal but professional and efficient. Strong financial safeguards are in place to NCVO standards including dual-authorisation of payments and receipts. However, no accounting software is used. We are a registered charity in good governance, members of NCVO, Disability Rights UK and the Fundraising Regulator. Our Trustee Board is small and very busy, but professional and effective. Safeguarding is important to us.
The Treasurer’s Role
The minimum expectation of the role is to fulfil the formal responsibilities of a charity Treasurer, ie to ensure the preparation of accurate accounts, to report monthly to the Trustees on all financial aspects, to ensure the charity remains in good governance from a financial point of view and complies with any funder requirements, and to oversee the preparation and auditing of the Annual Report and Accounts.
BuDS currently has an accounts volunteer who prepares payments for authorisation, files financial paperwork and prepares the paperwork for the auditor. Officers authorise payments online and do any cash banking. The Treasurer is thus not expected to have to do these day-to-day jobs, but obviously needs to have oversight of them.
The current holder of the Treasurer role has a wider fund-raising role, especially making grant applications and soliciting corporate donations. The resources to do this are in place. However, this is not an essential part of the role.
As a pan-disability disabled person’s organisation, BuDS actively welcomes disabled people whatever their impairment or disability. It is not necessary for the Treasurer to be, or identify as, a disabled person, but disabled people are very welcome to apply for the role.
Practical Aspects of Being Treasurer
We are very flexible and open to varied ways of working and to ensuring that our working methods are accessible and inclusive.
BuDS is a modern charity with excellent IT. The Treasurer has an email account and use of shared document drives (Office 365). Our main bank account is online. The Treasurer role can thus be done almost entirely from home or work. However, if preferred, access is available to our modern offices at Saunderton.
The Trustees meet formally once a month, usually on a Saturday morning in Aylesbury, but this can be changed to suit everyone’s availability. There is a weekly informal meeting open to all, again on Saturday morning in Aylesbury. A written report could be presented to reduce the need to attend all meetings.
All Trustees have agreed not to normally claim travel or subsistence expenses. However, this will be reviewed on request, as we do not want anyone to be put off being Treasurer for financial reasons.
How Do I Apply?
Please e-mail [email protected] to express an interest in becoming Treasurer. You can also call 01494 568864. For an informal discussion without any commitment, please call Dave, the incumbent, on 07770 450151.
We will then ask you to send us a brief CV. This will be followed by an informal meeting with the Chair, Secretary and Treasurer, at a place and time that suits you.
Following that, we will ask you to become a BuDS volunteer and to start shadowing the Treasurer. This will include attending some Trustee meetings. During this period, your role will be identified and clarified. When this is done to everyone’s satisfaction, you will be co-opted as a Trustee and acting Treasurer. After three months in the acting role, you would then be confirmed in the role of Treasurer until the next AGM, when you can stand for election.
We normally expect the Treasurer to remain in post for at least two or three years.
Safeguarding is very important to us. We will carry out an adult and children enhanced DBS (criminal record) check when you become a BuDS volunteer and also take up two character references. Because we understand that some disabled people may have a criminal record or difficult periods in their past, we will consider everyone individually and carry out a risk assessment in discussion with you. Additional professional references and a complete CV will be requested before you are appointed as acting Treasurer.
What Is BuDS?
Buckinghamshire Disability Service (BuDS) is the only independent pan-disability user-led organisation (DPULO) in Buckinghamshire. Pan-disability means we include all disabilities and impairments such as mental health, learning disability, physical impairments, sensory loss, autism, etc. User-led means we are disabled people taking action ourselves for ourselves.
We are non-party-political and non-partisan. We value our independence and do not accept core funding from any council or government body, although some of our projects are part-funded by statutory bodies. We are on the side of disabled people and will not hesitate to act and speak out in defence of disabled people in Buckinghamshire.
We are a registered charity in good governance, members of NCVO, Disability Rights UK and the Fundraising Regulator. Safeguarding is important to us. We are informal but professional and efficient.
What Does BuDS Do?
BuDS works to fix the big issues that affect all disabled people in Bucks, like social security benefits, NHS and council services, accessibility, transport, attitudes and employment. Our work removes barriers which prevent disabled people living their own lives, and finds answers to the big problems which affect disabled people. We don’t work directly with disabled individuals, but sort out the wider problems which affect large groups of disabled people, so that all can benefit.
We don’t duplicate work which is already being done by others; we ‘fill the gaps’ by tackling the issues that matter which nobody is tackling properly. We look at how important an issue is to disabled people before starting work – we don’t chase funding just because it’s there, or follow the government’s agenda.
We are fearless and speak out, telling the truth to power. We always like to work constructively in partnership with people and organisations, but if we find a deliberately closed door, we’ll do our best to kick it down!
How Does BuDS Work?
We have lots of projects, all run by a team of about 25 volunteers, mostly disabled people themselves. We deliberately have no paid staff. Some project work lies dormant waiting for volunteers to pick it up. Our projects are as follows:
- Benefits Information – helping disabled people understand the bewildering and often cruel changes to disability benefits which are happening all the time
- BucksWorkability – helping to improve services which support disabled people into work or help them stay there. We also help our own disabled volunteers to find work through our Reach4Work project.
- Accessible Everywhere – fixing the access problems and barriers which disabled people encounter in streets, public places, shops, parks, with parking, on public transport, etc. This is not just the physical problems, but looking at barriers facing people with all types of impairment or disability. We created the Stoke Mandeville Way to showpiece accessibility on public streets.
- Fair4All Services – monitoring NHS and council services for disabled people and where necessary intervening to get problems sorted and make things better
- Fair4All Taxis and Minicabs – helps ensure disabled people can get an accessible vehicle and trained driver at a fair price
- Fair4All Events – helps make outdoor public events accessible for disabled people
- Attitudes Project – opposing disability hate crime and negative attitudes to disability and disabled people
- Paralympics – we are full partners in the Bucks Legacy Board and help arrange the Paralympic celebrations every two years in Bucks.