Writing a Constitution

What is a constitution?

Many voluntary groups are relatively small in terms of the amounts of money and staff that they have. These organisations are called Unincorporated Associations. This is because they are not incorporated (ie they are not a registered company) but are a group of people working together to mutually agreed aims. This type of group has a particular kind of agreement governing how it is run – a Constitution. This is a set of agreed rules governing how the organisation will run, how the members will work together and what they are working towards.

A constitution is not only an effective tool for running an organisation but actually a requirement because of the activities they are undertaking. For example, a group that wishes to apply for funding or provide services in a community will face problems if they do not have a constitution.

A constitution is also a way of ensuring that the public and funding bodies feel confident that the group and its finances are being managed properly.

Before you complete the model constitution, we recommend that you read our leaflet Constitutions and the Constitution Checklist. If you would like a worker to check through your completed constitution, please email it to helen@boltoncvs.org.uk.

Hard copies and large print versions of our constitution resources are available by contacting Bolton CVS on 01204 546010.

Download the Small Charity Model Constitution.