Like bylaws, the constitution depicts the rules by which the entity will operate and the restrictions, powers, and duties of its officers and board members. In contrast, constitutions often describe the belief system, founding or guiding principles and moral direction of the organization. It is because of this characteristic that constitutions are rarely found in for profit corporations, but instead have become a staple of religious, service and charity-oriented nonprofits.
Contact details of those who can offer further assistance What do you use constitutions for? A constitution is the foundation for building an organisation. It should contain all the key agreements made by members on how the organisation will work.
In law it is called the "founding document" and it is legally binding on the executive and members of the organisation. It should tell draft constitution non-profit organisation business plan the following: Why the organisation exists, its purpose and objectives; Who the organisation's key constituency and stakeholders are, who should benefit from its work; and How the organisation intends to work, its broad principles and the basic structures for decision making and getting the work done as well dealing with the finances and assets of the organisation.
The constitution or founding documents should be clear and simple so that members understand their rights and responsibilities, leaders understand their mandate and how to be accountable and members of the public understand why the organisation exists and how it operates.
The constitution or founding documents will usually have detailed and clear sections on: The purpose of your organisation: The objectives of your organisation: The type of organisation you are: The membership of your organisation: Who may become a member and the duties and rights of members.
How you join and how members can resign or be expelled. The structures and main procedures of decision-making in your organisation: The roles, rights and responsibilities of people holding specific positions and of the different structures: How the finances and assets of the organisation are controlled so that no money or resources that belong to the organisation can be abused or misused.
Financial year and audit process that tell you when your annual financial account will be finalised and audited and who the report will go to Closing down the organisation: See the guide on Legal Structures commonly used by NPOs and A model constitution for a voluntary association for more details on each of these sections and an example of a constitution.
Important things to know about constitutions Constitutions are long-term decisions Constitutions should be written so that they will not need to be changed throughout the life of an organisation. They should not need to be changed often, although they can be changed [amended] if members feel the need to make new agreements about the basic principles of the organisation.
It is a major decision to change a constitution and the existing constitution should say when and how it may be done. Any changes should be publicised to members and the public [if relevant] and if you have registered your organisation, you will have to inform the bodies with whom you registered.
Constitutions should not be too detailed. They should record only those agreements that will remain true throughout the life of the organisation or until some major change happens. They should only record basic and long-term facts about the organisation that you will not need to change often.
They should not, for example, include specific objectives that are only relevant for a short part of the organisation's life span. The objectives you include should be relevant to the long-term goal and purpose of the organisation. The description of structures also should not be too detailed.
It should not contain names or other specific details that will change as the organisation develops. Only the main structures and their functions should be covered, as you may want to change parts of the structure from time to time. For example you may say " A Chairperson, secretary, treasurer and at least three additional members will be elected as an executive at the AGM" This allows you to change the number and the portfolios on the executive as your needs change, without having to amend your constitution.
Using constitutions The constitution is the key founding document of an organisation.SAMPLE CONSTITUTION XYZ Organization at ETSU PLEASE READ: Please note that this is a very simple, sample constitution, provided to assist groups in preparing their OWN, ORIGINAL constitution with more substance.
If you intend to apply as a new organization, your application may be denied if you simply fill in the blanks and turn this in as a. The business plan can be used throughout the life of your nonprofit, changing as the organization does.
A startup's business plan may be quite brief while the business plan . If it is a non-profit organisation, what type of non-profit organisation should it be - a Voluntary Association, a Trust or a Section 21 Company?
If it is either a Trust or a Section 21 Company, it will have to be registered with the relevant authorities as explained in the LRC guide on Legal structures commonly used by non-profit organisations.
Nonprofit organizations have a unique set of needs and requirements. That's why these sample business plans for nonprofit organizations and social enterprise businesses can help you get started on the right foot. These, and hundreds more sample business plans, are included in LivePlan.
It's the fastest way to create a business plan for your business. The business plan can be used throughout the life of your nonprofit, changing as the organization does. A startup's business plan may be quite brief while the business plan . Nonprofit organizations have a unique set of needs and requirements.
That's why these sample business plans for nonprofit organizations and social enterprise businesses can help you get started on the right foot. These, and hundreds more sample business plans, are included in LivePlan.