Rainbow Migration, the longest-running UK charity dedicated to supporting LGBTQI+ people through the asylum and immigration system, is seeking one or two new trustees who have sought asylum on the basis of their sexual orientation, gender identity/expression or sex characteristics.

We are looking for people who are passionate about our vision that LGBTQI+ people can settle in the UK and lead fulfilling lives, and our mission to support LGBTQI+ people through the asylum and immigration system. You should also be committed to our values: 

  • Safety: We believe everyone should be safe from persecution and safe to be themselves. We strive to create a safe workplace culture, and we place importance on the wellbeing of everyone involved with Rainbow Migration.  
  • Integrity: We are thorough and honest in everything we do, and we take responsibility for our actions. We want to be accountable to our communities and those who support us.  
  • Belonging: We welcome and include all LGBTQI+ people, and we celebrate and value their range of experience in terms of gender, religion, race, age, disability status and class. We try to remove obstacles to participation, champion equality and promote a sense of family or home through our services.  
  • Respect: We believe that every person is equal and deserves the same level of courtesy, care, and attention. We respect the rights, wishes and feelings of our service users, and campaign for their rights to be respected as they go through the asylum and immigration system.  

At Rainbow Migration, we don’t just accept difference – we celebrate it, we support it, and we thrive on it. We’re proud to be an equal opportunity employer and we value diversity. We particularly encourage applications from people of colour and trans, non-binary and intersex individuals, as well as disabled individuals. We welcome applications from people who have not served on a trustee board previously, and you can live anywhere in the UK. 


What will you be doing?

Being a trustee is a rewarding role. Trustees bring their expertise to shape our strategy and direction, and help ensure we remain the authoritative organisation on LGBTQI+ asylum and immigration. They have overall legal responsibility for the charity, make sure our finances and resources are well used to implement our mission, and are required to participate fully in the governance of the charity. Trustees also play a role as ambassadors for the organisation and its work. For more information see https://www.gov.uk/guidance/charity-trustee-whats-involved or https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U8TIkLLwwdQ  


What support will you receive? 

We provide numerous resources for trustees to receive training on good governance and the duties of a trustee, as well as on charity finance. Trustees will also receive training on safeguarding, cyber-security and data protection. Other training can be arranged to suit your needs. Training costs are covered by Rainbow Migration.  

Buddying up’ with an existing trustee can also be arranged, and this is encouraged for those for whom this is their first time serving as a trustee. This involves meeting up with a longer-serving trustee outside of board meetings, occasionally or regularly, to discuss: 

  • The format, style and content of board meetings generally 
  • Papers submitted to upcoming trustee board meetings 
  • Experiences serving on the board 

You will also have induction meetings with Rainbow Migration staff. 


What we do 

We provide emotional and practical support for LGBTQI+ people seeking asylum, offer legal information and advice, and carry out campaigning, policy work and strategic litigation. We also train lawyers and other organisations working with LGBTQI+ people seeking asylum. We have a team of 16 full- and part-time staff, volunteer lawyers delivering advice on applications for partner and spouse visas, and volunteers with lived experience of the asylum system who give advice to our campaign No Pride in Detention. 


Time and location 

We are looking for people who can commit to being a trustee for at least three years. Each trustee has to be re-elected about once every three years. The maximum term limit for being a trustee is nine years. 

Trustees meet in the evening about six times per year. Attendance at other ad-hoc meetings, events (such as the annual general meeting), or relevant committee meetings (e.g. on HR or finance) is also expected. Preparation for the meetings involves a time commitment of two to four hours for detailed reading of papers, which are provided several days in advance.  

Meetings are usually held by Zoom. Where face-to-face meetings take place in London, travel costs for trustees will be paid for by the charity. 


A few more details 

The role of trustee is a voluntary position. Expenses incurred in relation to fulfilling trustee duties can be paid by the charity e.g. travel, phone top-ups.  

Rainbow Migration is a membership organisation. We require our trustees to become members (£20 a year, which can be waived for trustees in cases of financial hardship). Trustees can be co-opted by the Board but have to be confirmed by Rainbow Migration’s members at the next annual general meeting (AGM). 

This position is open to people who have leave to remain in the UK or UK citizenship. We cannot accept applications from people who are currently seeking asylum or are under the age of 16. Candidates must not have been previously disqualified as a trustee or company director, have an undischarged bankruptcy or have unspent criminal convictions for an offence involving dishonesty or deception (such as fraud). 

If you are offered the role of trustee, we will later ask you to inform us if you have any criminal records that are still considered “unspent” – meaning you’re still in the process of rehabilitation for any convictions or cautions. After that, we will request you to obtain a “basic DBS certificate,” which Rainbow Migration will pay for. This certificate is a check we do with the Disclosure and Barring Service, and it only reveals details of convictions and cautions that are unspent. We use this information to assess if candidates are suitable for roles that may involve working with vulnerable individuals or positions of trust. Only offences or information that is relevant to the role will be taken into consideration. If you have an offence that is not, it won’t impact your ability to become a trustee. See our website for more information. 


To apply 

Please send: 

  1. Your CV. If you do not have a CV, please provide a written, audio or video summary of your education, work and/or life experience 
  2. Either: 
  • A covering email, or
  • video or audio recording explaining why you are applying (no longer than two to five minutes) 

to recruitment@rainbowmigration.org.uk by 10am on Friday 23 February.  

When writing your covering email or making your video or audio recording, please explain why you are interested in being a Rainbow Migration trustee. We also want to hear about your skills and experience. Skills and experience could be from training, volunteering, interests or life experience. Our current trustees have skills and experience covering lived experience of the asylum system, law (public law and human rights), business management, communications, fundraising and finance.  

If you are an expert by experience (a refugee or a migrant with direct, first-hand experience of issues and challenges of the UK asylum or immigration system), you can ask for an independent and confidential support for your application from the Experts by Experience Employment Network (www.ebeemployment.org.uk). Please complete this form to request support and they will confirm if they can match you with a mentor to support your application. 

If you would like further information about the role or to have an informal discussion with our Executive Director or an existing trustee, please contact recruitment@rainbowmigration.org.uk. 

Shortlisted candidates will be invited to an informal interview with the Executive Director and another trustee, which can be by phone, online or in-person in London (the costs of participating or attending can be paid by the charity, e.g. travel or phone data). The preferred candidate will then be invited to observe a board meeting so that both they and the organisation can feel confident that the role and organisation is right for them.  


Privacy notice 

We are committed to protecting your personal data and respecting your privacy. By applying for a role as a trustee, you agree that we may collect, use and disclose your personal data for the purposes of recruitment. We will not share your personal information with anyone outside Rainbow Migration without your consent, which you can withdraw at any time. Information is kept for the minimum period necessary, which for unsuccessful applicants is 12 months after the conclusion of the recruitment campaign. Please see our privacy policy for full details. 

Download application pack

You can also read more about what our trustees do.