CAN are recruiting! Trustee Charity Sector Experience


About Us

The Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation (operating as CAN) is a registered charity trading as a social enterprise, earning income in direct pursuit of its aims.  We strive to achieve this by offering business support, capital and flexible, affordable office space and a lot more besides.

The Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation is committed to helping other charities and social ventures thrive, grow and maximize their impact, and, expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.

We provide premises for social business/investment readiness, impact advice and social investment funds to a sector in need of support at a critical time in terms of scarce funding and austerity.  We do this through CAN Invest services and CAN Mezzanine, and every role at the Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation contributes to our ability to provide these services.

We currently house around 1300 individuals from 170 organisations all working for a better world in our offices (CAN Mezzanine) which are our community of social interest. In the last ten years, we have acquired premises with an asset value of over £40m from zero, run 5 serviced offices in central London exclusively for charities, social enterprises and not for profit organisations and have a turnover of just under £6m. Our key KPI is assets mobilised for social impact and we are surplus generative. The surplus is re-invested to do more and do better in pursuit of our objects. 

This is a pivotal time to join our Organisation as it is currently going through an exciting time of significant change and growth as it seeks to be a Foundation generating its funds not from endowment but from operating in direct pursuit of its charitable objectives. 


Who We’re Looking For

The Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation is seeking a Trustee who has extensive experience in the charity sector, its issues and barriers.

Trustee Role Description

The Statutory Duties of a Trustee

  • To ensure that the organisation complies with its governing document, charity law, company law and any other relevant legislation or regulations.
  • To ensure that the organisation pursues its objects as defined in its governing document.
  • To ensure the organisation uses its resources exclusively in pursuance of its objects: the charity must not spend money on activities which are not included in its own objects, no matter how worthwhile or charitable those activities are.
  • To contribute actively to the board of trustees' role in giving firm strategic direction to the organisation, setting overall policy, defining goals and setting targets and evaluating performance against agreed targets.
  • Ensure that the Board of Trustees is monitoring performance through reports provided by the Chief Executive and senior staff.
  • To safeguard the good name and values of the organisation.
  • To ensure the effective and efficient administration of the organisation.
  • Work within the Board of Trustees to ensure future sustainability in terms of the impact of activities against assessed need, and financial sustainability.
  • To protect and manage the property of the charity and to ensure the proper investment of the charity's funds
  • To appoint the chief executive officer and monitor his/her performance.

In addition to the above statutory duties, each trustee should use any specific skills, knowledge or experience they have, to help the Board of Trustees reach sound decisions. 

This may involve:

  • Fulfil the role of adviser to the Board for charity sector issues
  • Scrutinising board papers
  • Taking part in discussions
  • Focusing on key issues
  • Providing guidance on new initiatives
  • Other issues in which the trustee has special expertise

This particular role requires the candidate to be

  • Experienced in the charity sector particularly at Board level
  • Able to advise the Board and CE on charity issues. 

As a member of the Board of Trustees, you will carry the duties of the post with tact, diplomacy and confidentiality.

Trustee Person Specification

  • Commitment to the organisation: especially an understanding of and a commitment to the values of not for profit organisations and especially the principles of The Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation
  • Willingness to devote the necessary time and effort to the development of the organisation: an appreciation of the impact the organisation is already making, and sharing a passion for supporting people who would most benefit from its work
  • Able to contribute strategically across a wide range of issues
  • Work in partnership with the Chair and Chief Executive to ensure that the organisation has a clear vision, mission and strategic direction and that the organisation, the trustees and the Chief Executive are focused on achieving these
  • Ability to think creatively
  • Willingness to speak their mind
  • Understanding and acceptance of the legal duties, responsibilities and liabilities of trusteeship
  • A collaborative team player with a proven track record of sound judgement and effective decision-making
  • Act as ambassadors for Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation, and influence and network with our stakeholders, in service of our mission, vision and values

Time Commitment

  • Trustees serve a three-month probation
  • The Board currently meets four times a year plus a strategy day, and meetings are held during the working day at our Borough office and this commitment may increase slightly with the creation of a small number of Board committees.
  • Trustees are expected to attend all meetings unless there are exceptional circumstances.
  • Meetings with external stakeholders as and when appropriate
  • Trustees are expected to attend training sessions as appropriate to their role, experience and expertise

How to Apply

If you are interested in joining the Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation as a Trustee and have the skills and experience to support and help further develop our organisation, please send us:

  • A current comprehensive CV,
  • A covering letter (no more than 2 x A4 pages): demonstrating why you are interested in the position and what you would hope to bring to the position

Please submit your completed application to Therese Williams at


Therese Williams, CAN Mezzanine, 7/14 Great Dover Street, London, SE1 4YR.


The Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation is an equal opportunities employer.

Registered Charity No 1075749.

The Helen Taylor Thompson Foundation is committed to helping other charities and social ventures thrive, grow and maximize their impact, and, expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.

Category: CAN Group