Housing association Golding Homes has appointed four trainee members to its Board.
In an 18-month development programme, the trainees, who’ve not got previous Board experience, have the opportunity to learn about Board governance and responsibilities, as well as attending Board and committee meetings.
All four trainees, who have a passion for social housing, are being supported by ‘Board buddies’ while they gain valuable non-executive experience at the housing assocation based in Maidstone, Kent.
Rebecca Fraser, who works for a domestic abuse CIC, seized the opportunity to learn more about the housing sector after working with social housing clients in her day job. She says: “I really wanted to work with an organisation that’s actively supporting residents to alleviate some of the hardships they’re facing in the current climate and was really excited to be trained as a Board Member by an organisation that takes the ‘social responsibility’ part of social housing seriously.”
Jamal Langley, who works as a Housing Digital Project Manager for Westminster City Council, grew up in social housing and wanted to learn more about how decisions are made in the sector. He says: “What Golding Homes was offering from this traineeship was a unique insight that I hadn’t seen on offer elsewhere. I’ve always been interested in how decision making by social housing providers happens and this traineeship was the perfect opportunity to explore that.”
Ayo Onibokun, a Resident Support Lead in the housing sector – who’s also a Golding Homes customer – wanted to take part in the trainee programme to develop her leadership skills. She says of her experience so far: “My experience as a trainee Board member has helped to improve my skills and self-esteem and buoyed my knowledge by working within a well-grounded team with a well-defined purpose.”
Sajna Begum, a Housing Manager with 18 years’ experience, says the trainee programme will give her tools and knowledge to take back to her own organisation, NLM housing association: “This networking opportunity is helping me thrive in my current position and will improve operational procedures in my organisation by knowledge sharing and exchanging good practice.”
At the end of the programme, the trainees will be considered for full Board positions, depending on the needs of the Board and Golding’s strategic objectives.
Anne Chapman, Assistant Director of Governance and Compliance at Golding Homes, said:
“The trainee Board membership programme has been designed to improve the diversity and representation on our Board, by training people who’ve not had previous Board experience.
“We want our Board to be representative of our customers and we know that at least 25% of our customers are under the age of 35, so it was important to us to include younger people, as well as people from minority backgrounds, in our governance. It’s great to have these trainees with us, who all share our vision, values and passion for getting the best outcomes for our customers, and I’m excited to see where this opportunity takes them.”