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Finding the right trustees with Inspiring Scotland’s Specialist Volunteer Network - Inspiring Scotland


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Finding the right trustees with Inspiring Scotland’s Specialist Volunteer Network

Not only does Inspiring Scotland’s Specialist Volunteer Network (SVN) connect charities with professional volunteers to solve challenges, but our team are also on hand to help you recruit and train your Board.

Meet Bill Speirs, Board Director at The Jeely Piece Club

Bill was a practising solicitor from 1978 until 2021. He helped set up Clydebank Citizens Advice Bureau and was a Children’s Panel member for many years. He was a criminal lawyer, one of Scotland’s first employment lawyers, and later a leading practitioner in insurance litigation both in Scotland and abroad.  

He joined The Jeely Board in July 2018. The Castlemilk-based charity provides play and learning opportunities for children to help improve self confidence and self-esteem for children to carry into adulthood.  

Joining Jeely  

After chatting with the Inspiring Scotland CEO, Bill’s drive to start volunteering was clear. He then was introduced to our SVN executive Elaine who knew that through helping build and manage a very successful law firm, Bill had the right mix of skills to really add value to The Jeely.  

He joined at a time when the charity was going through a lot of change. The Board had to shift their thinking from a risk-averse approach to a more forward-looking one. 

Bill in conjunction with other trustees has been instrumental in helping navigate the structured change that has occurred over the last five years and the whole organisation now thinks and works differently.  

As Bill says, “Trusteeship is a good way to get involved, not in the day to day running of the charity but using the skills you’ve got to provide oversight, foresight and insight.” 

Where Boards can add the most value  

Bill believes a good Board should trust their team in the day-to-day activities and use their helicopter view to look at the big picture and maintain a focus on the long-term sustainability of the organisation.  

He used his analytical talents and got right to work helping the team at The Jeely create a new standardised HR recruitment process, which helped in the recruitment of a new CEO.   

He has also actively been involved with other board and staff members in improving and future-proofing other areas of the charity, including implementing improved safeguarding systems in the Nursery and Play Zone .The team were delighted with the changes as it cut down on  their admin time dramatically!   


Bill finds his involvement with the Jeely personally satisfying, He is there for the love of it and he has been surprised as an emotional bond has been established. It means much more to him than simply giving back, he sees the difference the charity makes, and loves being part of it.   

Elaine McKenna, CEO at The Jeely Piece said, “Bill and Inspiring Scotland’s SVN team have been a massive support to the Jeely. We have had a multitude of difficulties that were required to be raised at our HR committee and Bill has supported us to overcome every obstacle.  

“I have only been in the post of CEO for nine months and can already see the change and dedication that Bill has brought to the Jeely. He is committed to all board meetings and his exceptional wealth of knowledge makes a big difference.” 


Support from Inspiring Scotland 

As well as being an Active Play and Outdoor Community Play partner, The Jeely has received support from Inspiring Scotland’s Thrive Outdoors team helping to develop the charity’s strategy and to create a fundraising plan, alongside coaching support to the new CEO and setting up an outdoor nursery. Recent efforts have brought in some more donations and helped the team look at new funding avenues.  

We look forward to continuing our work with The Jeely Piece and Bill!  


If you would like to find out more about how SVN can support your charity, please visit the SVN page.



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