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Top UK charities sign up to Legal & General Board Trustee Programme

Foundation66 and Age Concern Islington amongst charities to appoint senior Legal & General managers as board trustees

LONDON, ENGLAND, August 18, 2010 ( Some of the UK's best-known charities have teamed up with senior managers from Legal & General for an innovative social responsibility trusteeship programme. Initiated by not-for-profit recruitment specialist, People Unlimited, the pilot scheme matches charities including Age Concern Islington, Asthma UK, Foundation66 and Contact a Family with Legal & General senior managers who will help develop the charities by sharing experience, skills and contacts.

The board trusteeships programme, named SMaRT (Senior Managers Recruited as Trustees), was launched in May this year and helps to forge relationships between private sector and not-for-profit organisations. Ten senior Legal & General managers will provide strategic and practical guidance to the charities by helping them develop skills and contacts drawn from the private sector.

The charities participating in the scheme include: Asthma UK, Age Concern Islington, Contact a Family, Foundation66, Hearing Dogs for Deaf People and Lively Minds.

Hugh Cutler, Head of Distribution, Legal & General Investment Management, one of the managers taking part in the programme and a future trustee commented: "the main driver is a desire to get involved in helping one or more of the causes I am passionate about - supporting the elderly, mental illness, homelessness, education. I am hoping that my career in investment and actuarial science can be of use, as well as my general management and business experience."

Alison Naftalin, Chair of Lively Minds said: "Lively Minds is very excited to be part of the Legal & General Trustee initiative. We are a small but rapidly growing charity and this is a great opportunity for us to benefit from the skills, experience and guidance of a senior manager from the corporate sector. We are keen to use best practice from the business, charity and public sectors in our work in order to make sure that we deliver the best possible services to our beneficiaries. We believe that this scheme will be a valuable contribution to our work but we also believe that this will be a rich and rewarding experience for the Trustee and Legal & General as a whole."

Other Legal & General managers of the programme added:

"I think this programme will provide me with the opportunity to add value to an incredibly worthwhile cause. I strongly believe that whatever their lines of business, companies in the UK, or anywhere for that matter, have a social as well as an economic role to play in society. Organisations are a part of the community so I am proud that my company supports programmes such as this and acts as a force for social good as well as a force for driving economic value," said Mike Smith, Commercial Director, Bank and Building Society Distribution at Legal & General.

Gary Burchett, Managing Director (Housing) at Legal & General, said: "I have skills and experience to offer a charity which enable me to give something back to a cause that I believe needs and deserves support. In return I will learn new skills from working in a different environment helping me to develop personally and increase my contribution to Legal & General."

The senior managers, participating out of personal choice, will be given time off from their current jobs at Legal & General to attend charity board and sub-committee meetings. The charity, in turn, will be supported by People Unlimited's Trustee Recruitment Team, providing recruitment services as well as governance and recruitment workshops, funded by Legal & General.

David Lale, Chairman of People Unlimited said the project would expand its reach during a second phase later this year: "We're seeing lots of interest in the project from larger charities such as Scope. However, at this early stage, we're focussing on small and medium-sized charities to give the participants an up close and personal involvement in the organisations."

Charities that are looking for talented managers to sit on their Board of Trustees should contact Catherine Whitmore, Head of Trustee Recruitment at People Unlimited on 020 7939 7436 or email

About People Unlimited

People Unlimited is an award-winning recruitment business, specialising in the not-for-profit sector with expert services that focus on careers in charities and fundraising; health and social care; housing; arts and media; and the green sector. Since 1990, when the company started as Charity People, People Unlimited has grown to become an industry figurehead and a trusted partner to the not-for-profit sector. Drawing on experience and insight of staffing, recruitment, career development and resourcing, People Unlimited has helped over 30,000 people find work with value-led organisations. People Unlimited helps clients plan and fulfill their staffing needs in the most cost effective and efficient way. Equally well placed to identify hard-to-find specialists or recruit large numbers of staff, People Unlimited has long-term client relationships with organisations that range from Royal Opera House, NSPCC, Big Issue, Shepherds Bush Housing Association to Cancer Research UK.

People Unlimited's wider purpose is to raise the profile of the sector as a great place to work. People Unlimited is the organisation behind the UK's largest not-for-profit recruitment event, forum3, now in its tenth year. For the last three years, People Unlimited has been the driving force behind the 'Alternative Rich List' campaign - to recognise those people who are wealthy in terms of life experience and what they give back to the community.
The next forum3 event will be held on 24-25th September 2010 at the Business Design Centre in Islington, London. To find out more, please visit

For more information about People Unlimited visit

About Legal & General

The Legal & General Group, established in 1836, is one of the UK's leading financial services companies. As at 31 December 2009, we were responsible for investing GBP334 billion worldwide on behalf of investors, policyholders and shareholders. We have over 7 million customers in the UK for our life assurance, pensions, investments and general insurance plans.


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[] Top UK charities sign up to Legal & General Board Trustee Programme
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