CLA News / Advertisement for Trustee positions – Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (UK)


The Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) London office is seeking knowledgeable and experienced people as Trustees to join its Executive Committee. 


CHRI is an international, independent, non-governmental organisation working for the practical realization of human rights in the Commonwealth through research, advocacy and mobilization since 1987. Headquartered in New Delhi, it also has offices in London and Accra. These trustee positions are for CHRI UK (based in London). 

CHRI focuses on the intersection of human rights, transparency and good governance, with programmes on access to justice, access to information, eradicating contemporary forms of slavery and human trafficking, media freedoms, and building the capacity of small States to access UN human rights mechanisms. CHRI UK leads research and advocacy work on SDG Target 8.7 and founded a member-driven network of local, grassroots NGOs aimed to eradicate contemporary forms of slavery and human trafficking. The Commonwealth is a community based on a shared sense of values (the Commonwealth Charter) as well as history and language, and is unique in bringing together developing and developed countries in both the north and south, on all continents.

For more information please see our website: 

The website of the Commonwealth 8.7 Network: 

While CHRI has 50 staff working internationally, the day to day management of CHRI UK is carried out by a small team led by the Director, currently based in London. CHRI UK is a registered charity and company under UK law and can have, according to its Memorandum, a maximum of nine Trustees. The Executive Committee (or Board of Trustees) has the ultimate responsibility of governing CHRI UK. Strategic direction and oversight, fundraising, finance compliance and risk management, are the primary responsibilities of Trustees of CHRI UK. 

Meetings of the Executive Committee of CHRI UK are held on a quarterly basis and, while these are currently virtual, are usually held in-person in Central London. 

CHRI also has an International Board, which meets every four to six months, with the Chair of the CHRI UK Executive Committee attending these meetings and representing CHRI UK. 

We are currently looking for three to four additional Trustees with fundraising, human rights and development, legal, and/or private company experience to join the governance of CHRI UK. 

This is an exciting opportunity to contribute to a well-known and reputable human rights organisation that has begun a new period of expansion and growth, in terms of programmes, income and influence. We are looking for motivated individuals who are ready to take us to the next stage.



The Executive Committee (or Board of Trustees) has ultimate responsibility for directing the affairs of CHRI UK – ensuring it is solvent, in compliance with UK charity law, and developing and delivering its mission and strategic objectives, as detailed in CHRI UK’s Memorandum of Association and strategic plan.

As a Trustee of CHRI UK, you would work closely with the Director of the London office, liaising through her with the CHRI London team You would also work with CHRI’s leadership in Delhi and the Executive Committee (EC) Chair. 


  • To ensure compliance with the vision, mission, objectives, purposes and values of CHRI  
  • To help shape the strategic direction of CHRI UK
  • To approve and ensure implementation of the strategic plan for the organisation
  • To ensure the solvency, strength and strategic impact and effectiveness of CHRI UK 
  • To ensure that the organisation complies with relevant laws, regulations and requirements of the Charity Commission and other relevant regulators 
  • To support the income generation and outward facing activities of the organisation 
  • To agree or ratify all policies and decisions on matters which might create significant risk to the organisation. To monitor changes in risk profile for the organisation 
  • To provide peer support to the Director of CHRI UK
  • To provide advice and guidance on specific operational areas
  • To be an ambassador for CHRI and for our work, including through the media

Person specification


  • Experience of successfully dealing with strategic issues 
  • Sound judgement and ability to think creatively and strategically; ability to handle competing priorities and make informed decisions 
  • Commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights, to equality, and respect for diversity
  • Interest in CHRI’s purpose to realise human rights throughout the Commonwealth
  • Understanding of working internationally for a small non-profit organisation 
  • Background / professional experience in one or more of the following where we would like to improve our coverage: 
    • Legal (business law, human rights law, or public international law)
    • Human rights or development programme management and evaluation (international)
    • Fundraising (preferably non-profit fundraising, fundraising strategy development, donor due diligence, knowledge of institutional donor/trusts and foundations landscape, development of cases for support and proposals, maintaining donor relationships)
    • Human rights, in particular contemporary forms of slavery
    • Corporate and finance 
    • Policy, advocacy and communications


  • Connection to Commonwealth countries outside of the UK, in particular those in the Caribbean and/or Pacific regions
  • Good knowledge of relevant general legislation and statutory requirements, including charity law, employment law and or health and safety law 
  • Experience of overseeing governance and programming processes within a voluntary or public sector organisation 
  • Good networker and able to leverage professional networks in support of CHRI UK strategic objectives when required, in particular for contract development and funding opportunities 



Trustee posts are not remunerated. They are voluntary and unpaid positions. CHRI UK is a limited company. 


Reasonable travel expenses incurred to attend Executive Committee meetings, and all other reasonable costs incurred whilst carrying out the duties of being a CHRI UK Trustee, will be reimbursed, if approved in advance by the Executive Committee. 

Trustees may at their discretion, and without setting any precedent for future activities, choose not to claim expenses if they wish to support the charity in this way. 

Term of Office 

The term of office is for three years. Trustees may serve an additional term of three years, subject to agreement of the Executive Committee.

Expected Time Commitment 

The time commitment for the post of Trustee is approximately one day a month, including preparation for and attendance at all Executive Committee meetings (2-3 hours every three months) and other meetings as they might be called from time to time (approximately 1 day per annum).

Training and Development 

CHRI UK will provide an induction for all new Trustees, as well as an opportunity to meet the CHRI UK team. 


To express your interest please forward your CV and a covering letter to, with ‘Trustee Application’ in the subject line. 

Please indicate:

  • Your interest and experience in becoming a Trustee for CHRI UK, referring to any relevant experience relating to the person specifications above
  • Any experience you have in governance in a charity, private or public body

Our first deadline is 20 November 2020. Should posts remain unfilled after this date, we will review applications on a rolling basis until all positions are filled. 

To enable diversity on the Executive Committee, CHRI welcomes candidates from LBGTI and/or minority groups, and from young people.