Foundation Secretary and Grants Manager

£35,000 per annum, pro rata (20 hours per week)
18 Aug 2017
18 Sep 2017
Part Time
Contract Type

ROYAL FEMALE SCHOOL OF ART FOUNDATION (RFSA): Foundation Secretary and Grants Manager


  • Permanent part-time employed status; hours 20 per week to be reviewed after 12 months.
  • Home working, within easy reach of London (for which reasonable expensed travel will be met for Trustee meetings and other grant related duties).
  • The salary will be £35,000 per annum, pro rata.


The organisation

The Royal Female School of Art Foundation (RFSA) is a small grant-giving charity based in central London. The Foundation provides grants (via colleges and universities) in order to support art and design students living or studying in Greater London. The Charity’s origins date back to the founding of the Royal Female School of Art in 1842. The school was established under royal patronage, with the aim of educating young women in the arts and allowing them to gain “honourable and profitable employment”. Whilst the school was later subject to a merger, its ethos is continued by the RFSA charity and its Trustees, who are custodians of the school’s historic funds and assets.


With the cost of studying rising, the RFSA’s funds are increasingly important as a means of supporting students, whether this be in the form of general maintenance grants or one-off bursaries to fund final-year art projects. The Trustees also provide grant aid for informal learning opportunities, to support access into education. With a view to its origins, the charity particularly supports those who suffer disadvantage by reason of pregnancy, childbirth, caring or parenthood.


The charity has undergone a significant period of change in recent years, with its incorporation as a charitable company and an increase to the size of the Trustee board. As the charity modernises itself, the Trustees are seeking more comprehensive support via the creation of the role of Foundation Secretary and Grants Manager.


The role

This newly created role is an exceptional opportunity for an experienced individual who has been working on a broad range of charitable duties. The candidate will act as Secretary to the RFSA and its Trustees, and will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the charity, as well as for advising the Trustees on charitable governance and assisting in the development of new policies. The candidate will act as a key link between the charity’s Trustees, its external advisers and its grant beneficiaries. This role is pivotal to the success of the charity as it undergoes a period of evolution.


Key activities of the candidate include managing and monitoring the grant process, organising Trustee meetings and taking minutes, annual reporting, along with managing the trust finances and professional adviser relationships. In addition to the regular annual activities, there will be a series of project opportunities over the short to medium term which could include a move towards digitising the operation of certain RFSA processes, archiving the historical RFSA documents, property related activities and closer monitoring of grant outcomes.


The candidate will report directly to Trustees, but will be expected to work independently on a day-to-day basis. Due to the breadth of the responsibilities, a transition period will be offered to work with the existing Secretary.



Summary of key responsibilities

  • Acting as Secretary to the Trustees, the candidate will arrange and document four regular Trustees meetings per annum plus additional sub-committee group meetings; prepare secretarial reports as required
  • Complete Charity Commission Annual Return and Companies House returns acting as Company Secretary to the incorporated RFSA
  • Prepare end of year financial records for transfer to accountants
  • Day to day management of Trustees bank account, expenses and finances including rental processes
  • Manage the appointment and induction of new trustees
  • Manage all professional relationships including lawyers, accountants and investment managers
  • Monitor charity law/ commission requirements and update all RFSA documents as relevant; provide advice to trustees on these requirement as necessary
  • Work with the Trustees to develop additional policies and strategy documents
  • Acting as Grants Manager, the candidate will invite and manage the entire grant application process, including the review of monitoring reports and invoices for payment.


Additional project potential

Subject to capacity, there will be a number of project opportunities opening up for the candidate during the next few years, which will include exploring potential to improve the digital delivery of the RFSA operations such as banking and finance, developing a documentation share site and repository, developing a website, social media presence, and automating the grant application and monitoring processes. In addition, the RFSA is considering a comprehensive review of the reserves and investment policy, an archiving project, managing a number of sub-groups of Trustees on a range of projects and closer working with the RFSA property interests.


Skills required

The candidate must be educated to at least A level standard and be digitally competent in a range of relevant applications to support the above tasks, including excel. The candidate will need to be highly articulate in both written and oral communication, as well as capable of working to a high standard with minimal supervision.  Sound numeracy and financial skills will be required and the candidate will need to demonstrate experience in managing some accounting and / or financial transactions. A background in charitable working is strongly preferred, together with knowledge of charity governance procedures and legal requirements. Some knowledge of art education is desirable as this will help with a better understanding of the grant process and beneficiary needs.


Please refer to the Job Description below for the full responsibilities of the role and the terms and conditions of employment.


To apply: Please submit your CV and a short covering letter, explaining how you meet the requirements of the role, to Jessica Vine, Secretary to the RFSA via


You should include the names of two referees (no contact will be made until agreed between the candidate and the Trustees).


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