Trustees' Week: "I enjoy being a part of a charity that supports parents and children with downs syndrome."

October 24th, 2018
Lauren Hartley

Up on Downs is a parent run organisation which supports families of children with Down’s syndrome. Lauren Hartley, the Chair, tells #TeamHerts Volunteering about her trustee journey for #TrusteesWeek. 

 

Where are you a trustee for and for how long have you been doing it?

I am a trustee for Up on Downs in Hertfordshire and I have been involved with the charity since 2008. 

How did you get in to trusteeship and what do you do?
I was introduced to the charity firstly as a voluntary play leader, after applying through North Herts CVS. I was then asked by Sande, the Development Manager, if I wanted to join the committee. My first role as a trustee was as Secretary and Safeguarding Officer, and then after some internal changes I was appointed as Chair.
What do you enjoy about your trustee role, how does it benefit you?
I enjoy being a part of a charity that supports parents and children with downs syndrome. Parents are well supported by the services we fund and the support offered by the charity. It also provides a support community for parents who can speak to other parents who have shared similar experiences. I have always been passionate about helping the community and I enjoy being able to be a part of this wonderful charity. 
 
What difference are you making by being a trustee?

The majority of staff and trustees have disabled children and so having someone who has an outside perspective and time to respond efficiently when needed is really helpful. I'm from a recruitment background, which helps with all our hiring and staffing needs and I am the designated Safeguarding Adviser. Although I started as a volunteer on the frontline and got to know the work of the charity through that, I now work solely with the trustees and staff.  I support the charity's Manager directly  with issues that require higher level decision-making and generally enable the team to get on with delivering a programme that I know directly has a huge impact on the families they work with.

If someone was interested in finding out more about the organisations you volunteer for how could they get in touch?

The easiest way to contact the charity is through the email enquiries.nhdowns@yahoo.co.uk

 

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