As Core Services Manager for the North Tyneside Voluntary Organisations Development Agency (VODA), Keith spends his working life alongside volunteers, charitable organisations and members of the local business community. He tells us about his career and his recent move to join the North Tyneside Business Forum’s management team.
What’s your role in the NTBF management team?
I play to my experiential strengths by representing the Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS) on the management team. I’ll be working alongside organisations that fall into that category and representing them in the planning and management of the Business Forum.
David Bavaird, chair of the Business Forum, is a colleague of mine at VODA. When he approached me to join the management team during 2019, I took the opportunity to expand my experience and opportunities in the business community.
Tell us a little more about your background
VODA in North Tyneside is a registered charity which provides support, advice, information and training to volunteers across the region. We also work alongside a many of the charity, voluntary and community organisations across North Tyneside too.
We’re based on the Queen Alexandra Campus in North Shields and provide a wide range of support services and represent the views of the sector to government and policy makers both locally and nationally.
On a personal basis, I’ve worked for North Tyneside Council for several years, managing Community Development and the Play Service. Following that I went on to manage a charity in South Shields called Action Station. I moved to my current position at VODA in September 2018.
Does your role on the team create connections for you in business and indeed in your life outside the Forum?
I’m looking forward to making connections between all the avenues of my career within the Business Forum Management Team. I think all my involvements fit together brilliantly and I can link the Voluntary and Community Sector with business in the North Tyneside.
As part of my role at VODA, I’ll be able to use VODA’s social media channels to inform the sector about what the Forum is planning and developing and vice versa too. It’ll work nicely and benefit both organisations as well as their wider members.
I also run Sector Connector in North Tyneside which connects businesses with voluntary and community organisations for the mutual benefit of both sides. Businesses are supported in developing their Corporate Social Responsibility and local groups and organisations receive help and support from local businesses. My involvement in the Management Team can only benefit from that, as well as providing me with opportunities to support the organisations I represent.
How do you see the Forum developing in the future?
I would like to see the Forum continue to increase its membership and forge strong and productive relationships with the VCS across the region to explore opportunities around Social Action and promoting volunteering.
For more information about VODA, visit www.voda.org.uk