Admin

The guiding philosophy and approach of Transition Tynedale is to be inclusive, positive and enabling. If someone wants to step forward at any point in time to do something positive in Tynedale that supports the aims of the Transition movement, then we want them to do it!

Everyone at Transition Tynedale is a volunteer. Some volunteers are with us consistently for years and contribute an enormous amount to multiple projects and groups, some help with one event every so often, some get heavily involved in one particular project or group, and some come along to general meetings to contribute ideas and be involved in discussions but don’t take any active role in projects or groups.

Everyone is welcome. At the same time, as a responsible organisation – and as an official Transition Initiative, part of the UK and international Transition Towns movement – we need to make sure that volunteers are appropriately supported and that an appropriate structure is in place for decision-making.

This page aims to provide  clarity as to how the Directors of Transition Tynedale Ltd run the organisation responsibly whilst not letting formal structures prevent volunteers from delivering the type of positive change they want to see.

Directors

In 2011, Transition Tynedale was incorporated as a Limited Company. The intent of this was to protect volunteers from legal liability should anything go wrong in the name of TT.

Directors are basically the administration group for Transition Tynedale. They perform the following tasks:

  • Keep a list of registered members
  • Ensure TT finances are in order (Treasurer)
  • Keep a list of grant applications across TT to ensure no duplicate applications
  • Keep central registry of risk assessments
  • Maintain liability insurance and check that coverage is adequate for events and projects.
  • Keep the TT membership informed of TT decisions via the newsletter and email.

These responsibilities are shared across the Directors.

Groups, Projects & Events

TT volunteer actions can be classified into Groups, Projects and Events.

  • Transition Tynedale Groups
    • Meet as a group, typically with pre-arranging meeting schedule and email distribution lists
    • Can oversee multiple projects, or just one project
    • Exist for a number of months and ideally for years
    • Can have fluid memberships
    • E.g. the Energy Working Group, Food Group
  • Transition Tynedale Projects
    • Have one single focus
    • Might originate from a working group, from a topic discussed at one of Transition Tynedale’s open meetings (normally the first Weds of each month, all welcome) or from the great idea of one individual
    • Might be delivered solely by Transition Tynedale volunteers, or in conjunction with partner organisations
    • E.g. Hexham Middle School Community Garden, Edible Hexham, Hexham River Hydro
  • Transition Tynedale Events
    • Are individual events where Transition Tynedale has a clear presence as a local organisation, either as the main organiser, or as a prominent stall-holder, typically using the prominent Transition Tynedale banner
    • E.g. The Green Energy Fair and Rubbish Event, stall at Hexham Farmers market

What to do

In order to help Directors fulfil their responsibilities, volunteers who act in the name of TT must adhere to some simple rules when doing all the great things they do.

ALL (Groups and Projects and Events)

  1. Please ensure that you seek the approval of the TT Directors before commencing any fundraising. This is, not least, so we can give you advice on the success or otherwise of previous funding applications or other types of fundraising and so that we can support you with key information about TT overall for grant applications, which should improve their chance of success
  2. Please ensure that you seek the approval of the TT Directors before committing to any expenditure, unless you have prior delegated authority to make decisions for particular expenditure. This is often the case when funds are ring-fenced for an individual project.
  3. If organising any event or activity in association with or under the banner of Transition Tynedale – a risk assessment must be carried out. This needs simply to be the identification of potential risks and action that will be taken to reduce risk to an acceptable level. A Risk Assessment Form is available via the TT website. If in any doubt as to how to approach this a Director should be asked for guidance.
  4. If organising an event the Directors need to ensure that insurance cover applies. Directors should be given full details of the proposed event no less than 2 weeks prior to its happening in order to have time to check insurance.

Groups

Please ensure that:

  1. Your TT Group has a clear frame of reference that is known to the overall TT Directors and approved of by them
  2. There is at least one and no more than three nominated contacts for the group, who act as the group’s coordinators and are the main conduit of information from the group to the Directors and to wider members of TT
  3. At least one representative provides an update on your Group’s activities at the monthly TT open meeting, not missing more than two consecutive meetings
  4. One representative keeps track of the members of the Group (names and email addresses) and handles personal data with appropriate sensitivity
  5. You seek the approval of the TT Directors before committing to any new types of activity
    E.g. the Energy group would not need to seek permission before committing to running a new Energy Fair because TT has run more than one Energy Fair before; however, the Energy group would need to seek permission if the Energy Fair were to include a new type of activity e.g. building a demonstration wind turbine on the Abbey Grounds.
  6. You seek the guidance of the TT Directors if you are unsure about any of the above.

Projects

Please ensure that:

  1. Your project has a clear frame of reference that is known to the overall TT Directors and approved of by them, including whether or not the project is in conjunction with any partner organisations
  2. There is one nominated TT contact for the project
  3. One project representative provides an update on the project at the monthly TT open meeting, not missing more than two consecutive meetings
  4. One project representative keeps track of the TT volunteers working on the project (names and email addresses) and handles personal data with appropriate sensitivity
  5. You seek the guidance of the TT Directors if you are unsure about any of the above.

Events

Please ensure that:

  1. Your event has a clear frame of reference that is known to the overall TT Directors and approved of by them
  2. There is one nominated TT contact for the event, who keeps track of other TT volunteers helping at the event
  3. An update is provided about the event and TT’s involvement at each relevant monthly TT open meeting, and particularly the two immediately prior to the event date
  4. You seek the guidance of the TT Directors if you are unsure about any of the above.

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