MP visits site of proposed Sunbeams music centre to celebrate role of trustees

Date: Friday 15th November 2013
Left to right are Sally Wilson, Sunbeams musician; Rory Stewart MP; Liesl McViety, project co-ordinator; Christopher Strutt, chairman; Mrs. Isa Henderson, trustee; and Dr. Anthony Wolfe, treasurer.
Left to right are Sally Wilson, Sunbeams musician; Rory Stewart MP; Liesl McViety, project co-ordinator; Christopher Strutt, chairman; Mrs. Isa Henderson, trustee; and Dr. Anthony Wolfe, treasurer.

PENRITH and the Border MP Rory Stewart celebrated Trustees’ Week 2013 by thanking charity trustees in his constituency for their dedicated work in supporting local charities, and highlighting the benefits of becoming a charity trustee.

He met with trustees of Eden-based charity Annie Mawson’s Sunbeams Music Trust, of which he is a patron, and visited the site of the proposed National Sunbeams Music Centre, for which Sunbeams has already raised an incredible £1.4 million.

Representatives from Sunbeams showed Mr. Stewart the site and discussed with him their latest fund-raising successes. Chairman Christopher Strutt, treasurer Anthony Wolfe and trustee Isa Henderson were in attendance, and talked to the MP about the fulfilment they feel in their role as Sunbeams trustees.

Mr. Stewart said: “Sunbeams is almost the perfect example of how motivated, engaged trustees both contribute and gain so very much from being part of a local charity.

“Cumbria is, of course, characterised by hundreds of charities all doing immensely important work, and their trustees are all integral to their success. In Sunbeams’ case, its trustees are drawn from such a broad cross-section of professionals and supporters all of whom are passionate about Annie and her team’s work and directly contribute their time, energy and belief in the charity, helping it reach milestones such as this fantastic fund-raising total for the new centre.

“This Trustees’ Week I want to pay tribute to the tireless work they undertake to help others and keep the charity sector in our county so vibrant and strong, setting an example for the rest of the country.”

Annie said: “We thank Rory for his support. We are all so excited about the centre, and all our projects which we sustain throughout the year delivering community music therapy to people of all ages (three months to 107 years) with a wide range of disabilities.

“We are very proud of our board of trustees all chosen for their wide experience. We really appreciate their wisdom and support.”

Chairman Mr. Strutt said: “No thanks are required, because Sunbeams is actually such a wonderful organisation to work with: it draws you in and once people know and understand the work of Sunbeams, I’ve not found anyone that could resist becoming involved.

“We are now on the home straight to realising the vision of building this national resource in the heart of Cumbria, which will be a truly wonderful asset for Penrith, the wider community of Cumbria and nationwide.”

Mr. Stewart added: “I would also encourage as many people as possible to consider becoming a trustee. Being a charity trustee is a great way of learning new skills and gaining valuable experience, and could lead to new opportunities and employment. Estimates suggest that almost half of charities have at least one vacancy on their board so there is an organisation for you, whatever your age or background.”

ABOVE: Left to right are Sally Wilson, Sunbeams musician; Rory Stewart MP; Liesl McViety, project co-ordinator; Christopher Strutt, chairman; Mrs. Isa Henderson, trustee; and Dr. Anthony Wolfe, treasurer.