1. Document purpose
To outline the role and responsibilities of a Groups Coordinator. This document is to be used as a template for u3a Committees to amend depending on the specifics of this role in their u3a.
2. Role summary
To facilitate the setting up of new interest groups through supporting and advising the Group Convenors/Leaders and ensuring good communications between group members, the Committee and the u3a as a whole.
3. Skills and Experience
- Enthusiasm for u3a interest groups and a passion for setting up and supporting interest groups.
- Organisational skills and comfortable using technology for sending emails, and collecting and managing data.
- A team player, this role will be part of the u3a committee.
4. Main responsibilities
Some of the responsibilities listed here may be shared with other u3a members, for example by having a deputy/assistant. Where the Groups Coordinator role is a member of the u3a committee (trustee) there are also additional statutory requirements and responsibilities of trustees.
4.1. Setting up and supporting new groups
- Recruitment, induction and ongoing support for new Group Convenors/Leaders.
- Gathering input from members on suggestions for new interest groups.
- Helping to publicise new groups via the local u3a website, newsletter, monthly meetings etc.
- Maintaining regular contact with groups and providing support with any challenges.
- Monitoring and collecting information about group numbers and where there are waiting lists encouraging members to start new groups.
4.2. Providing support and advice to Group Convenors/Leaders
- To provide a copy of the Group Convenor/Leader handbook or guidelines to all Group Leaders/Convenors (there is a template handbook available on the u3a website), and copies of relevant forms e.g. incident report forms, expense claim forms (some of these are available to download from the u3a website).
- Maintaining a list of local venues for groups
- Informing Group Convenors/Leaders about the resources available nationally including Third Age Matters Magazine, national newsletter, Sources, the u3a website, and Subject Advisors.
- Being the first point of contact and provide support for any queries, problems, challenges that might arise in the running of an interest group, referring more serious matters to the Committee.
- Holding regular Group Convenor/Leader meetings so knowledge, challenges and new ideas can be shared and discussed.
- Encouraging shadowing and handover for Group Convenors/Leaders who have decided to move on from their role.
4.3. Communication and administration
- To maintain accurate details of your u3a’s interest groups.
- To liaise with Group Convenors/Leaders and provide the committee with updates on the progress/development of interest groups.
- To communicate any relevant information to Group Convenors/Leaders from the committee, local networks, the region and or the u3a Office.
- To encourage and assist Group Convenors/Leaders to share the activities of their groups via their u3a website, in local press and national commuinications.
There is a wide range of support and training available for all Groups Cordinators from your u3a’s committee to online workshops, and a wealth of information on the u3a website. More information about this is available in the document Interest Groups Matters, available to download on the u3a website