Join Our Network

Suffolk’s first group of young shadow trustees are being trained and placed with local charities

Community Action Suffolk recently held its first workshops to train young people to become trustees.

The Young Leadership Project aims to get young people (aged 16 to 25 years old) involved with Suffolk charities as shadow trustees, enrolling them in the Suffolk Young Trustee Programme.

Thirteen young people attended the sessions, led by Janet Perry, Community Action Suffolk’s Youth Leadership Development Officer, who said:

“I have worked with many inspiring young people over the years, but these young adults still surprised me with their deep social conscience and natural drive to want to make a difference.

“They threw themselves into the creative activities of Lego building and a mock board meeting, as well as showing a real understanding and interest in the legal and serious side of the trustee role.”

These potential trustees are already showing themselves as leaders of the future, who will stand out from the crowd to give young people a stronger voice in the voluntary sector.

Two of the young shadow trustees have already been placed through the project, with St Elizabeth Hospice and Suffolk Artlink. Other young people are already involved with the Good Neighbourhood Scheme Steering Group, Outreach Youth, East Suffolk Partnership Board and North West Ipswich Big Local Trust. They became involved with the Young Leadership Project to develop their leadership skills and confidence.

One of those already placed, Chloe, said:

“The training has been an effective and fun experience. It has taught me new skills and allowed me to have a greater understanding of being a young trustee.”

The organisations involved also benefit hugely from having young people involved with their work at a strategic level. Hayley Field, Co-Director at Suffolk Artlink, said:

“Suffolk Artlink is very excited to be involved with the Young Leadership Project. We aim to better reflect the people we work with through representation on our board, and having a young shadow trustee is an important step towards this. We hope that bringing the voice of a young person to our organisation at a leadership level will be an enriching experience both for us and the young person involved.”

The next Young Leadership Project training will take place on 25 July in Ipswich and 26 July in Lowestoft. For further information, go here or contact Janet Perry, Youth Leadership Development Officer,, 07391 419917.