Part 1: Context
1.1 The Purpose of Scouting
Scouting in the UK is organised through The Scout Association. The Scout Association has a clear purpose: ‘To help young people achieve their full physical, intellectual, social and spiritual potential as individuals, as responsible citizens and as members of their local, national and international communities‘.
The Scout Association’s method of meeting the purpose of Scouting is through the balanced programme.
1.2 The Scout Method
Scouting uses a Method, which is young people, in partnership with adults:
- enjoying what they are doing
- learning by doing
- participating in varied and progressive activities
- making choices for themselves
- taking responsibility for their own actions
- working in groups
- taking increasing responsibility for others
- taking part in activities outdoors
- sharing in prayer and worship
- making and living out their Promise
1.3 The Balanced Programme
The balanced programme provides a framework for the progression of training, activities and awards that covers everything that young people do in Scouting from the ages of six to twenty-five. It involves helping young people to grow through six tailored programme zones: Community, Global, Beliefs and Attitudes, Outdoor and Adventure, Creative Expression and Fit for life. The Programme is everything we do as Scouts – it includes the activities and the badges, the challenges and awards.
1.4 Key Policies
The Scout Association has adopted key policies relating to:
- Child Protection
- Equal Opportunities
These can be found in the latest edition of the Policy, Organisation & Rules of The Scout Association.
1.5 Structure of the Scout Association
Scouting in the United Kingdom is organised in Scout Groups, Scout Districts, Scout Counties and Country Headquarters. These units of Scouting provide:
- Channels for communication
- Opportunities for youth Members and adults to make decisions and take responsibility
- Functional units through which the design and delivery of the youth programme can be best achieved
The Scout Group is the local organisation for Scouting. It combines the different sections and comprises of the following:
- a Beaver Scout Colony;
- a Cub Scout Pack
- a Scout Troop.
A group can also consist of any number of sections in the different age groups. All sections in a Scout Group provide co-educational Scouting.
Additionally, a Group may also include one or more Group Scout Active Support Units. An Explorer Scout Unit may also be attached to a Scout Group.
1.6 Registration of Scout Groups
A Scout Group cannot exist unless it has a current registration with the Scout Association. Registration is renewed annually by completing and submitting an annual registration and census return as directed by Headquarters. Registration renewal also requires the payment of the Headquarters Membership Subscription and any District, and County Membership Subscriptions payable.
The registration, suspension, and alteration or cancellation of registration are matters for the appropriate District Commissioner and District Executive Committee.
Charity Law does not permit a Scout Group to transfer from the Scout Association to any other body whether calling itself a Scout organisation or by any other name.
1.7 Our Aim
The aim of 5th Rotherham Scout Group is to provide Scouting to boys and girls from the age six to fourteen
Part 2: Management of 5th Rotherham Scout Group
5th Rotherham Scout Group is an autonomous organisation holding its property and equipment and admitting young people to membership of 5th Rotherham Scout Group subject to the policy and rules of The Scout Association.
5th Rotherham Scout Group is a not-for-profit organisation and is a Registered Education Charity.
5th Rotherham Scout Group is led by a Group Scout Leader and managed by a Group Executive Committee. They are accountable to the Group Scout Council for the satisfactory running of the Group.
The Group Scout Leader is assisted and supported by the Group Leadership Team and Group Supporters in the delivery of the balanced programme for young people within the group.
Part 3: The Group Scout Council
The Group Scout Council is the electoral body which supports Scouting in 5th Rotherham Group. It is the body to which the Group Executive Committee is accountable.
Membership of the Group Scout Council is open to:
- All appointed Leaders in the Group
- Colony, Pack and Troop Assistants
- Occasional Helpers
- Group Scout Active Support members
- Skills Instructors
- Patrol Leaders
- Parents of Beaver Scouts, Cub Scouts and Scouts
- Any other supporters including former Scouts and their parents who may be admitted by the Group Scout Leader or the Group Executive Committee
The District Commissioner and District Chairman are ex-officio members of the Group Scout Council. Membership of the Group Scout Council ceases upon:
- The resignation of the member
- The dissolution of the Council
- The termination of membership by Headquarters following a recommendation by the Group Executive Committee
The Group Scout Council must hold an Annual General Meeting within six months of the financial year end to:
- Receive and consider the Annual Report of the Group Executive Committee, including the annual statement of accounts;
- Approve the Group Scout Leader’s nomination of the Group Chairman and nominated members of the Group Executive Committee
- Elect a Group Secretary and Group Treasurer
- Elect certain members of the Group Executive Committee
- Appoint an auditor or independent examiner or scrutineer as required.
The quorum for meetings of the Group Scout Council is four, which must include the Group Scout Leader or Group Chairman plus 2 other members of the Group Executive Committee.
3.3 Appointments and Elections
The positions of Group Chairman, Group Secretary and Group Treasurer cannot be held by an appointed Scouter. Members of the Group Council wishing to stand for election should make their intention known to the Group Scout Leader at least seven days before the date of the meeting at which the election will take place.
Only if no one has notified the Group Scout Leader in this way that they wish to stand for election to a position will be all owed to put themselves forward at the meeting itself for that position.
No individual can hold more than one nominated, elected or co-opted position on the Group Executive Committee. Appointments on the Group Executive Committee may be terminated by:
- The resignation of the holder
- The unanimous resolution of all other members of the Group Executive Committee
- The expiry of the period of the appointment
- Confirmation by Headquarters of the termination of the appointment in the event of the cancellation of the registration of the Group
All persons becoming members of the Group Executive Committee must complete the Scout Association’s appointments process which includes a Personnel Enquiry.
Part 4: The Group Executive Committee
4.1 The Responsibilities of the Committee
The Group Executive Committee supports the Group Scout Leader and ensures the effective administration of the Scout Group. The Group Scout Leader nominates the Group Chairman and the relationship should be one of partnership and mutual support.
The Group Executive Committee aims to make sure that the Scout Group has the facilities and resources needed to deliver good Scouting in the Group. This includes:
- the maintenance of the Group’s property and equipment
- the raising of funds and the administration of the Group’s finance
- the insurance of persons, property and equipment
- Group public occasions
- assisting with the recruitment of Leaders and other adult support
- The Group Executive Committee exists to support the Group Scout Leader in meeting the responsibilities of their appointment
The Committee is responsible for:
- Maintenance of the Group’s property and equipment
- Raising of funds and the administration of the Group’s finance
- The insurance of persons, property and equipment
- Group public occasions
- Assisting with the recruitment of Leaders and other adult support
The Group Executive Committee consists of the following:
- The Group Chairman
- The Group Secretary
- The Group Treasurer
- The Group Scout Leader
- The Assistant Group Scout Leader
- The Sponsoring Authority or its nominee
- All Section Leaders (i.e. individuals holding a Beaver Scout Leader, Cub Scout Leader or Scout Leader role) subject to that Section Leader expressly indicating to the AGM (in writing or orally at the meeting) that they are willing to perform such a function
- The Group Chairman
- Up to three other persons nominated by the Group Scout Leader
- The nominations must be approved at the Group Annual General Meeting
- The Group Secretary
- The Group Treasurer
- Several people corresponding to the number of active colonies, packs, and troops in the Group. Ideally these people should be parents; one from each section of the Group
- Elections will take place at the Group’s Annual General Meeting
- Persons co-opted annually by the Group Executive Committee. Honorary Members
- Persons who through service to 5th Rotherham Scout Group are deemed worthy of this recognition
- Proposed and seconded by members of the Group Executive Committee and approved by the Group Scout Council
- Position to be held for a fixed term; no longer than five years
The number of nominated, co-opted, and honorary members together must not exceed the number of elected members.
The Group Executive Committee should formally meet at least four times during each calendar year (not including the AGM of the Group Council).
The quorum for meetings of the Group Executive Committee is six voting members, one of whom must be the Group Scout Leader or Group Chairman.
When a Section Leader is unable to attend a Group Executive Committee meeting, they may be represented by and voted on behalf by an Assistant Leader from their section.
4.5 Procedure for Meetings
All questions that arise at any meeting will be discussed openly and the meeting will seek to find general agreement that everyone present can agree to.
If a consensus cannot be reached a vote will be taken and a decision will be made by a simple majority of members present. In the event of an equal number of votes being cast on either side the chairman does not have a casting vote and the matter is taken not to have been carried.
4.6 Rights of Attendance
The District Commissioner and the District Chairman have the right of attendance at meetings of the Group Executive Committee.
The Group Executive Committee may establish any sub-committees that it deems necessary.
The Group Scout Leader and the Group Chairman will be ex-officio members of any sub-Committee of the Group Executive Committee.
Any fundraising committee must include at least two members of the Group Executive Committee, in addition to the ex-officio members.
No Section Leader or Assistant Leader may serve on such a fundraising sub-Committee.
4.8 Charitable Status
As 5th Rotherham Scout Group is an educational charity, the following members of the Group Executive Committee are the charity trustees:
- Nominated members
- Elected members
- Co‐opted members
- Ex‐officio members will be asked at the Annual General Meeting whether they wish to and are able to take on this responsibility. If they are not present at the meeting, they are able to submit their decision in writing
Before becoming members of the Group Executive Committee, prospective members must be made aware of the qualifications for becoming and the responsibilities of being a charity trustee.
Only persons aged 18 and over may be full voting members of the Group Executive Committee because of their status as charity trustees.
Certain people are disqualified from being charity trustees by virtue of the Charities Acts. Charity trustees are responsible for complying with all the legislation applicable to charities.
Part 5: Finance
5.1 Budgeting and Expenditure
The Group Executive Committee must ensure that proper financial planning and budgetary control is operated within the Group.
Changes to subscriptions charged by Sections of their members require the approval of the Group Executive Committee.
All expenditure not specifically delegated to the Sections must be approved by the Group Executive Committee to ensure that the Group can meet any liability so incurred.
When entering into any financial or contractual obligation or commitment with another party, the persons concerned should make it clear to the other party that they are acting on behalf of the Group and not in a personal capacity.
5.2 Funds administered by Sections
Each Section must itself administer sums collected through subscriptions, charged for section activities, and/or allocated to it by the Group Executive Committee.
All funds administered by sections remain the asses of 5th Rotherham Scout Group and must be consolidated into the Group accounts at the end of the financial year.
Each Section must keep a proper cash account which must be produced, together with supporting vouchers and the cash balance, to the Group Treasurer at least once in each period of three months.
Sections may hold their own bank accounts subject to same rules as the main Group account, see below.
5.3 Bank Accounts
All monies received by or on behalf of the Group either directly or via supporters, must be paid into a bank account held in the name of the Group. This account may, alternatively by a National Savings account or a building society account.
The Group bank account(s) will be operated by the Group Treasurer and other persons authorised by the Group Executive Committee. The Section bank accounts (when held) will be operated by the Section Leader, other leader if designated to administer the sections accounts.
A minimum of two signatories must be required for any withdrawals.
Under no circumstances must any monies received by a Section or supporter on behalf of the Group be paid into a private bank account.
Cash received at a specific activity may only be used to defray expenses of that same specific activity if the Group
Executive Committee has so authorised beforehand and if a proper account of the receipts and payments is kept.
The bank(s) at which the Group account(s) are held must be instructed to certify the balance(s) at the end of the financial period direct to the scrutineer, independent examiner or auditor as appropriate.
5.4 Books of Account
As a separate educational charity. 5th Rotherham Scout Group is under statutory obligation to keep proper books of account.
A statement of accounts must be prepared annually and be scrutinised, independently examined or audited as appropriate in accordance with the rules of the Scout Association. This statement must account for all monies received or paid on behalf of the Group, including all Sections and Committees.
Signed copies of the annual report and accounts must be sent to the District Treasurer within the 14 days following the Group’s Annual General Meeting at which the annual report and accounts were received and considered. A copy of the annual report and accounts must also be sent to the Charity Commissioners within ten months of the financial year end.
Statements of account and all existing accounting records must be preserved for at least six years from the end of the financial year in which they are made, or for such longer period as may be required by H.M. Revenue and Customs.
Part 6: This Constitution
All changes to this constitution must be approved by a meeting of the Group Scout Council.
Minor changes can be provisionally approved by the Group Executive Committee and brought into effect pending full approval the Group Scout Council.
In event of a significant change being needed before the next Annual General Meeting of the Group Scout Council, then an Extraordinary meeting of the Council should be sought.
This document is based on the Scout Association’s Policy, Organisation and Rules (P.O.R.).
Where the two differ, this constitution has jurisdiction over 5th Rotherham Scout Group,
Where the P.O.R. is updated, the relevant changes will be reviewed by the Group Scout Leader and appropriate changes proposed to 5th Rotherham Scout Group’s constitution if necessary.
For any matter not covered in this constitution, reference should be made to P.O.R. The rules or recommendation made therein will then apply to 5th Rotherham Scout Group until a consideration by the Group Executive Committee and / or the constitution is amended.