Hale Chapels Trust Community Development Volunteer
The Hale Chapels Trust is a registered charity with objects:
- To manage the restoration and preservation of the Hale Chapels as a community centre for the benefit of the people of Upper Hale and the wider community of Farnham;
- Contributing to the conservation and heritage of the area; and
- Advancing public education and interest in the history of the area.
The Trust is seeking a Community Development Volunteer to help build a sustainable business plan for the Chapels, post restoration. This is in advance of a bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to be submitted in August for decision in November. If the bid were successful the post would continue.
Community Development Volunteer Role
The first and urgent priority is to identify, contact, and cultivate community groups and organisations who might form users of the future centre. The purpose is to strengthen the business case by demonstrating that the probable level of bookings would achieve a financial break-even point (estimated at an income of £14,000 per year and 104 hours’ hire per month). The existing business plan identifies a likely 46 hours of hire per month.
The volunteer would therefore promote awareness of the centre to statutory bodies and existing community groups as well as nurturing potential interest groups and clubs, in order to secure expressions of interests in booking the centre. Such groups might include games and hobby groups, and child-minding groups. Most users are likely to be adults, including retirees. Existing expressions of interest have been secured from the Hale History Project, a writing group, the local U3A, and a clinical commissioning group.
As the HLF bid progresses, we hope there will be other opportunities to work on promotions to increase the engagement of local people with the heritage of the Chapels and wider history of the area. However, strengthening the business plan and financial viability of the centre is the key priority at present.
The role is estimated at 4 hours per week for at least 7-12 months. If the HLF bid is successful it is envisaged that the role would transition into a paid post with responsibility for bookings and promotion.
Previous experience/knowledge required or desirable
- Ability to communicate, listen, and motivate is essential. Personal qualities are more important than formal skills, though experience of promotion and events planning would be helpful.
- Knowledge of and enthusiasm for the local area and its groups would be an advantage.
- Experience of managing databases and use of office/Excel packages would be helpful.
- It would be possible to work from home, but you would be expected to attend meetings in Farnham/ Hale and to make visits to potential users of the centre.
The role would suit a driver with their own car, though this would not be essential.
Trust Board members would provide supervision and guidance.