British Trust for Ornithology

Thetford, Norfolk

Volunteer • Part Time

Sectors: conservation & wildlife

Closing date: Friday, 27th May 2022   2 days left

Role title: Trustee roles with a focus on Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, HR, and Regional Network

Overview information:

At BTO we are fortunate to have a fantastic and committed Board and we are now looking for three Trustees to join us from 2023. BTO Trustees work with the Chief Executive Officer and Senior Leadership Team to create and enable our organisational strategy, bringing a range of valuable expertise from their own knowledge and experience to benefit BTO.

Board members have overall legal responsibility for BTO, ensuring financial regulatory and monitoring performance. BTO provides induction and training opportunities to all Trustees to support them to fulfil their role. Trustees have the opportunity to contribute to discussions, identify key issues and provide advice, ideas and encouragement on various topics, all of which help BTO to achieve its vision and mission.

As a Trustee you will ensure that BTO:

  • is effectively and efficiently administered and is financially stable
  • complies with its governing document, charity law, company law and any other relevant legislation or regulations (such as Safeguarding)
  • applies its resources in pursuance of its charitable objectives
  • safeguards its good name and the values of the organisation
  • champions equality, diversity and inclusion and sustainability in line with its priorities
  • Protects and manages its property and ensures the proper investment of the charity’s funds.

We are interested in hearing from people who are passionate about contributing to and are able to demonstrate:

  •   Commitment to the mission and values of the BTO
  • Willingness to meet the minimum time requirement as well as contributing outside of Board meetings, through attending events and supporting staff
  • Integrity, vision and good independent judgement
  • Ability to think creatively, make an individual contribution and work effectively as a member of a team to take decisions for the good of the BTO
  • Understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship
  • Demonstrate passion, understanding and experience for the sector and BTO’s work.

Due to upcoming departures, if you have a particular interest, knowledge, or experience in one or more of the areas highlighted below then we have great opportunities for you to get involved and make a contribution:

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Focus

We are now looking for a Trustee with an EDI focus to complement the skills and experience of our current Trustees and to contribute to the broad governance and strategic direction of BTO. BTO is in the process of producing its roadmap on EDI. There is more information on BTO’s commitment to EDI on our website.

  • Applicants should ideally identify as someone from an underrepresented and underserved community
  • Applicants should have an interest in being BTO’s EDI Board Champion and play a leadership role on issues related to equity, diversity, and inclusion across BTO
  • Clear commitment to understanding of the lived experience of minority, disadvantaged or protected characteristic groups
  • Experience of developing and supporting an organisational culture committed to and respectful of equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Understanding of how to achieve lasting and meaningful change.

Regional Network Committee (RNC) Member Focus

Our Regional Network Committee represents and supports BTO’s UK-wide network of volunteer Regional Representatives, Ambassadors and Survey Organisers and representation on the Board is important. You will bring:

  • Experience of contributing to volunteer biodiversity monitoring programmes
  • An appreciation of the role of citizen science in conservation
  • Excellent communication skills
  • An understanding of volunteer needs and motivations
  • Experience of volunteering as a BTO Regional Representative, Ambassador or Survey Organiser would be beneficial but not essential.

Human Resources Focus

BTO has a small People Team, also covering H&S that carries out operational and strategic HR; due to an upcoming departure we are seeking a Trustee with experience and potential in:

  • human resource management and/ or organisational development, not necessarily from within the not for profit sector
  • developing HR strategy, policies and procedures
  • Chairing of BTO’s job evaluation panel (JEP) which is held at various times throughout the year
  • being a point of contact for the Head of People for HR related matters
  • key areas of HR that will be beneficial to the development of BTO, such as culture, workforce and succession planning or talent management.

BTO’s Commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

We are committed to working towards greater representation on our Board and tackling the barriers to equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI), we welcome applications from people underserved and underrepresented in the environment sector. We are also interested in hearing from people across the UK as we are a national charity as demonstrated by our work and supporter and volunteer base.

If you are interested in supporting our work but perhaps you are early on in your career or think you may not have the breadth of experience required please do not hesitate to get in touch to discuss how we can work with you.

We are also recruiting for a Chair of Trustees and a Young Trustee so please check these roles out too if they are of interest to you.

Time Commitment

The Board meets five times a year, in February, May, July, September and November; meetings are normally during the day and held both virtually and in person.


This is a voluntary, unpaid position with expenses reimbursed while travelling to meetings. We are able to compensate for loss of income to remove barriers to people from applying for Trustee roles and in turn enable a more diverse and representative Board.

Find out more:

Sian Knott, Head of People and OD [email protected]

Closing date: Friday 27 May at 1 pm Interview date:  Week beginning 20 June

BTO is a national charity with headquarters at Thetford in Norfolk, and we have offices and staff at the David Attenborough Building in Cambridge, Stirling University, Bangor University and Northern Ireland.

Find out more & apply