What is a Voluntary Management Committee?
The Voluntary Management Committee is a collection of individuals working together to undertake the running of Cylch Meithrin in the local community. The committee is the employer of the Cylch Meithrin's staff and the committee has legal responsibility for the Cylch Meithrin.
It takes energy, enthusiasm, hard work and patience to ensure the success of a new Cylch Meithrin. That's another reason for working closely with a group of people with the same mindset. You can work on the problems together, and promote and support each other.
If you intend to establish a new Cylch Meithrin, contact your local Mudiad Meithrin Support Officer for assistance, advice and guidance.
Here are some of the Wales Council for Voluntary Action guidelines for establishing a Voluntary Management Committee. (You can find more information on the WCVA website):
The First Steps
The best way to start is to collect together a small number of people who share your interest and talk about what you can do. Even if they do not want to have a long-term role, they may be willing to contribute ideas and experience in the early stages.
How can you find interested people, if you don't know them?
- You can try to ask community workers, school teachers or anyone else who meets many people in the community.. Ask them if they know someone who would be interested in your ideas.
- You can also display advertisements in post offices, libraries, community centres, places of worship or anywhere else with many people e.g. shops, surgeries, and do not forget local websites. The adverts should explain what you want to do, and ask anyone interested to contact you.
- If you want to reach a wider audience, write to your local papers. Outline your project or intentions, and give a contact name, address and telephone number. They may print something for free.
- Your County Voluntary Council can give you useful contacts and possibly some publicity. They also have a list of people looking for voluntary work. To see the contact details of your local County Voluntary Council, click here
- It's usually a good idea to hold an open meeting to launch the new committee.
- Contact local newspapers and radio stations.
- Invite local councillors, your Assembly Member and your MP.
- If you want the Cylch to attract people from all sections of the community, invite representatives of different groups to contribute ideas at the first meeting. It is better to get representation from the outset.
As well as the people that are already part of it, think about inviting:
- Your local Mudiad Meithrin Support Officer
- Anyone who shows an interest in helping
- Other organisation working in a similar field (e.g. The Parent Teacher Association of the local Welsh medium school, Menter Iaith, Clybiau Plant Cymru)
- Organisations that work with specific groups and communities
- Key local authority staff (e.g. County Child Care Team, Flying Start, Health Visitors)
- A representative from your County Voluntary Council
The meeting may be formal or informal but there should be a structure and agenda. It will be an opportunity for you to:
- explain what you have in mind
- make or strengthen useful contacts
- search for publicity
- attract volunteers
- find out how others view your ideas (It's worth noting the points made by people or writing formal minutes.)
Those people who want to be a formal part in the Cylch Meithrin should then meet to form a management committee and adopt a constitution.
The committee will need to determine a legal structure. Ctlick here to read more about Cylch Meithrin committee legal structures.