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How can Scotland's charities find the board directors they need?

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The most rewarding career move a finance professional can make might well be an unpaid board membership, according to Leith recruitment agency iMultiply Resourcing.

At 5:30 pm on 2 October in Edinburgh, iMultiply and Johnston Carmichael present an evening of talks by charitable organisations interested in connecting with senior business professionals from the Central Belt. Kirsty MacKenzie, founder of iMultiply Resourcing, said she decided to launch Pros for Pro Bono as an annual event in response to a growing need for senior business leaders to contribute to the success of Scotland's charitable sector.

“Nonprofits are telling us it's very difficult to find pro bono board members, especially those with finance skills. Charities want to enhance their organisations with voluntary board members who bring expertise in areas like finance, law and human resources. At the same time, we've been speaking to finance professionals who want to widen their professional networks and gain exposure to a different sector. We've launched this annual mixer to help these groups find each other, and learn more about the benefits of pro bono board membership for the individual, for the charity and for the community.”

Chief Executive Nigel Henderson of mental health charity Penumbra notes that Scotland's charities are increasingly delivering welfare functions that were once the remit of the state, and need a range of professional skills to secure contracts and assure good governance.

"Charities need to show they have the right procedures, processes and governance. Collectively Scottish charities employ around 130,000 people: we need to think as big as other sectors, and make sure that at a board level we are doing things right, not just doing 'the right thing.'"

"We recruit from a wide range of backgrounds/disciplines for Penumbra pro bono board members, from finance to employment law to lived experience of mental health issues. Recently one of our board members helped us with a question around intellectual property. Senior individuals who are interested in helping shape the kind of Scotland we all want can make a tremendous contribution through pro bono membership on charity boards."

The event features speakers from Penumbra, Link Group and Melville Housing Association. David Jack of Ascend HR will describe his own experience of board-level pro bono work. The evening aims to give charity CEO's and individuals the opportunity to promote their organisations and meet with talented senior finance and business professionals who are interested in pro bono work.

The event is sponsored by Johnston Carmichael, award winning Chartered Accountants and Business Advisers, and will take place on Wednesday 2nd October from 5.30 at the Johnston Carmichael offices on 7-11 Melville Street, Edinburgh.

Spaces for this invitation-only event are limited. For more information, or if you would like to attend the event, please call Fiona Riding on 0131 603 7747