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Trustee role– SOFA PROJECT – ReUse, Recycle, Rehabilitation Charity.

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SOFA Project was formed in 1982; our name stems from the acronym Shifting Old Furniture Around. The charity was set up to help alleviate poverty by the provision of affordable furniture and domestic appliances to low-income families in our local communities and to ensure that household items were not disposed of in landfill if they were still usable. It has evolved to become a major participant in the Reuse & Recycling sector in Bristol and the surrounding area as well as in providing a unique workplace for offenders to gain invaluable work experience and training in its warehouse and three retail outlets.

SOFA Project has been providing rehabilitation opportunities for male prisoners very successfully since 2008 in its partnership with HMP Leyhill. Prisoners attend on daily work placements at our operational warehouse facility where they are trained by experts in the upcycling of furniture and the repair of household goods such as cookers, washing machines, tumble driers and dishwashers. These items are then placed with families living in social housing through a successful partnership with Bristol City Council or sold at affordable prices to low-income families. Most of the HMP Leyhill prisoners have gone on to successful outcomes on release from prison with some continuing to work for SOFA Project helping retrain others. About two hundred male prisoners have received support in this way.

SOFA Project is a leading member of the Reuse Network with its 120 members. SOFA Project has been key in the development of the circular economic model whereby reused goods provide employment and an improved standard of living for those on low incomes. It is a highly efficient model whereby 80% of the Charity’s income is generated by sales of reused & recycled items that would otherwise go to landfill. Well over half a million items have been saved this way since the Charity started.


Role Description

Job Title: Trustee

Remuneration: Voluntary and Unpaid. Reasonable out of pocket expenses reimbursed.

Location: Meetings mainly held on weekday afternoons each quarter at 4.30pm at 48-54 West Street, St Phillips, Bristol, BS2 0BL, but remote attendance can be available in some instances.

Time commitment: Approx. 1 day per month

Key responsibilities

  • Work with the Board to oversee the continued development of SOFA Project’s strategy and priorities.
  • Act as an ambassador and raise the profile of SOFA Project and represent the charity at external functions, meetings, events and forums.
  • Ensure the Board operates within its charitable objectives and communicates its strategic direction.
  • Ensure the Board fulfils its duties, maintaining the sound financial health of the Charity.
  • Together with other Trustees and the CEO, develop and maintain good relationships and communication with stakeholders and supporters.


Person Specification:

  • Ideally, but not exclusively, someone with a professional background in law, finance, business or someone with experience in high street or online retail.
  • An interest in the civic or charitable landscape within Bristol
  • Personal commitment to the ReUse agenda, making a difference to the lives of those in need in the Bristol area and supporting those who find it difficult to gain employment and the idea of rehabilitation
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and relationship-building ability.
  • A good listener who is able to motivate staff and volunteers.
  • An insight and understanding of the Greater Bristol area in which we operate and where our services are delivered.

Terms of Appointment

  • References will be taken and the process will adhere to the Charity Commission guidance on Trustee appointments.
  • Appointments are for a three years but often renewed for other terms of three years. Appointments are made by a Trustee Board resolution.
  • All Trustee roles are voluntary but reasonable expenses will be paid.
  • We are enthusiastic about our Board governance and opportunities for personal development are all important to us.
  • There is no doubt that the Trustee role requires commitment and that this can bring meaningful reward.

How to apply:

Email CV and covering letter/ email to:

Email Keith Hicks  Chair of trustees SOFA Project on

or call 07903 780850

or contact Nicci Peck, Chief Executive of SOFA Project on 0117 954 7800