Constitutional changes help support aims: ours, and funders

June 3rd, 2013 by J-P Leave a reply »

A few small but important changes to the Sustainable Witney constitution were voted in unanimously at the previous general meeting on April 4.

It might surprise some members to hear that we even have a constitution! But any organization like ours, especially if they want to ensure their practices are fair and above board (and especially if they hope to attract funding), should adopt some kind of constitution.

Four changes of varying sizes let us do the following:

  1. Standardize the “due notice” (how far in advance and by what means) that the committee must give to all members for any important announcements
  2. Ensure this due notice is given for general meetings announcements
  3. Ensure this due notice is given for future constitutional change proposals and email polls of members
  4. Clarify what happens to any Sustainable Witney funds in the event of winding up, especially those provided by external funders

Why did we bother making these changes, apart from general clarity? Well, we’ve now ensured that all of our due-notice announcements are made by means which are in line with our core aim of sustainability: postal notices are no longer specified, and all notice is completely electronic. As we have email contacts for all of our members, removing the option of a postal notice makes a lot of sense and also in theory prevents paper and transport-related waste in the future.

More importantly, by clarifying the ultimate resting-place of any of Sustainable Witney’s funds, we’re able to reassure external funders that we’re serious about satisfying their criteria for funding provision; even if Sustainable Witney really did have to be wound up, any money entrusted with the organization would be properly and respectfully put to good use.

So, yes, these are small (and maybe a bit niggling) changes, the first we’ve had to make since 2009: but I think I speak for everyone who voted on them, when I say that we hope that by being proactive in making them, and by having a constitution we can be proud of, we can continue to run Sustainable Witney’s ongoing and future projects on a robust administrative basis.

In fact, we’re so proud of the constitution, that we’re now providing it on the website as a PDF.


Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.