Check out our newest fortnightly editorial in the CQ Today (11th October 2023).
Are you involved with a not for profit organisation?
Do you know your legal obligations?
Have you read the constitution?
Do you know where it is saved?
Many organisations run on “the way we’ve always done it” rather than as per the
compliance requirements of the constitution. If you are involved in a not for profit it’s
important to understand your responsibilities – so if you haven’t – source and read your
If you can’t find it – the Office of Fair Trading can re-issue it to you.
A well structured constitution is the bedrock upon which all operational and governance
decisions are built. Prioritising your constitution is essential to ensure transparency,
accountability and overall success.
Here are some quick tips to build a robust constitution. Use the model rules template on the
office of fair trading website and use policies and bilaws to build in your organisational
specifics such as:
1. Clarifying what your organisation wants to achieve, the issues it addresses and the
community it serves, aswell as the mission, vision and values of the organisation.
2. Ensuring your management committee have the skills needed to run your
3. The structure of your organisation – the roles and responsibilities, how decisions are
made, meetings conducted and leadership positions filled
4. If your organisation has members, outline the criteria for membership, rights and
responsibilities, fees, voting procedures and the process for admitting and expelling
5. How funds will be managed, audited and reported
6. How conflict of interests will be dealt with
7. Defining the process for editing and amending the constitution and updating it
regularly to ensure your organisation is operating in the most streamlined, best
If you’re volunteering for a not for profit and could use some help with your constitution,
contact NFP House.
Lois from NFP House, where you can contact us anytime, to make a difference to your life and our community!