Short Steps for Starting a Society:
- Think of a great idea
- Pick a president and treasurer
- Write an action plan and send this to the HUS Treasurer
- Write a constitution
- Get 10 signatories from members of the JCR (these don’t need to be members of the society!)
- Figure out a financial plan
- Show up to the HUS termly open meeting to vote on your society
- Show up to the yearly HUS societies meeting (if it hasn’t already passed)
Step 1: The Idea
The general concept for your society is completely up to you. It’s rare that the HUS would reject your proposal due to the initial idea. However, there are some things to look out for. First, make sure that a similar society doesn’t already exist.
Second, the HUS is a non-political organisation and is bound by constitution to not give funding to any political bodies. As a result, we cannot recognise any society that is based in political activism or governmental politics. If you’re unsure if you fall under these categories, contact the HUS treasurer. If the answer isn’t clear cut, the HUS exec will have a vote to determine whether your society can be supported.
Step 2: Committee Members
How you organise the society’s committee is up to you. However, the HUS requires that any proposals have a set President (to run and organise the society) and Treasurer (who we can contact regarding financial matters), which should be decided prior.
Other members of the committee may include, but are not limited to:
- Social Officers
Who holds these positions can be determined later in the year.
Step 3: The action Plan
This is a brief description of the society and its actions. The treasurer will use this to ensure that the society doesn’t break any constitutional rules and that it can be feasible within college.
Some questions to ask yourself before writing your action plan:
- What is the general purpose of the society?
- Who is the society aimed at? Who can participate?
- How often will members meet?
- What type of events will be held?
- Will the society have any external contacts? (such as speakers or partner organisations)
- How can these events/actions help the general Homerton community?
Step 4: The Constitution
Every society is required to have a constitution. This is used to outline the actions and laws of the organisation. It’s important that you have one and follow it correctly.
A general outline for how to write a constitution can be found in the link below.
The HUS requires that you acknowledge the below points within your constitution, such that you fully understanding the relationship between your society and the HUS JCR.
“3.1.6 The recognition of a club/society and its funding can be withdrawn by the HUS if it receives evidence that the club/society is contravening its own Constitution or the Constitution of the HUS JCR.
3.1.7 No club/society can hold a separate bank account. All monies received must be banked as part of the HUS accounts.
3.1.8 Any application for sponsorship by a club or society must be presented to the HUS JCR President and the HUS JCR Treasurer before the formal application is made.
3.1.9 All club/society accounts are strictly confidential. Only the three named officials of the relevant club together with the HUS Office Manager, the HUS JCR President, the HUS JCR Treasurer and Senior Treasurer may have access to them. No details of the account except total income, total expenditure and overall balance may be discussed or made known without the prior permission of all of the above, unless the club/society enters into a negative balance.”
If you want to send us your proposal and constitution, you can give us all the details by filling in the online form found here
Step 5: Signatories
After your set up your society you will need to gather 10 signatories from members of the JCR. Currently, these include all undergraduate students including those on their 4th year and those on a year abroad, masters students that are directly continuing from their undergraduate course such as engineering students, and PGCE students.
These signatories do not need to be members of the society, but instead simply interested in seeing it be created.
You can collect these signatories by asking for a form from the HUS office that must be filled out and signed by hand, or online with the names and CRSID of all signatories. Once you’ve compiled a list of signatories, you can be fill them in on the online form (again, found here).
It should be noted that the purpose of these signatories is to allow for the society to be presented at an open meeting. You can receive funding prior to being approved by the general student body, but you will not be considered an official permanent society until a vote has been taken.
Step 6: Funding
Once you’ve filled out all of the forms and sent the correct documents you can start to receive funding. You need to draft an annual budget, which the HUS JCR will adhere to. For most starting societies this includes a budget of £100 per year.
Some of the fees to consider may include, but are not limited to:
- League or affiliation fees to a recognised industry organisation
- Coaching, teaching or training costs
- Race entry fees/cuppers and the like
- Facility hire fees
- Equipment replacement/repair/maintenance
- Necessary travel expenses (equipment transport/away matches)
Funding can be received in one of two ways: directly paid invoices or reimbursements. To receive funding directly there must be an invoice in regards to a pre-approved fee by the HUS JCR Treasurer or President. It is more common to receive funding through reimbursements, where you can provide a receipt for an expense. All reimbursements must be pre-approved prior to providing the receipt.
If you do not meet your full budget for the year it will not be rolled over. Further, if you require funding that is over your allocated budget you can make a petition to the HUS JCR Treasurer, but there is no guarantee that this will be granted so it is generally advised to stay within budget.