Policy & Constitution

Volunteer Policy

About Clonmel Tidy Towns

Clonmel Tidy Towns are a group of volunteers who are working together to bring Clonmel to be the best it can be. The volunteers enter the annual national Tidy Towns competition with the aim of winning gold medals. In 2021, the volunteers won a gold medal, our 12th in row.

Volunteers work together in the completion categories of:

  • Community – your planning & involvement
  • Streetscapes & Public Places
  • Green Spaces & Landscaping
  • Nature & biodiversity in your locality
  • Sustainability – doing more with less
  • Tidiness & litter control
  • Residential Streets & housing Areas
  • Approach Roads Streets & Lanes

The Volunteer Role

The volunteers offer a service by giving their time and dedication without pay. It is important to ensure that Clonmel Tidy Towns protect volunteers by making sure that volunteers are well looked after and that they are fit to work. It is important that volunteers are treated with respect and dignity and share the goals of Tidy Towns Ireland.

Volunteer Expectations

Volunteers agree to meet for a minimum of one hour per volunteering session. Each session lasts between one and two hours. Volunteering sessions occur on Tuesdays and Thursdays starting at 7pm and Saturday mornings starting at 11am. The Tuesday and Thursday evenings run from April to September. Volunteers also agree to a minimum of 3 sessions per month during the Spring/summer session.

Current Projects

  • Litter picking
  • Planting and maintaining trees and pollinators
  • Promoting wildlife
  • Improving townscapes
  • Promoting Clonmel Town

This is just a few, as a volunteer Clonmel Tidy Towns will introduce you to the full list of projects and encourage you as a volunteer to continue to promote the work of Clonmel Tidy Towns in line with our shared goals.

Purpose

The aim of this policy is to produce a clear framework for the use of volunteers working as part of Clonmel Tidy Towns. People volunteer for a variety of reasons and can contribute in a range of ways according to individual needs and talents that they bring. Volunteers will need to abide by the values, principles and policies which form the framework of Clonmel Tidy Towns.

Equal Opportunities

Clonmel Tidy Towns are committed to the development of equal opportunities and believe that opportunities should be open to all regardless of social class, gender, sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, religion, colour, race or ethnic or national origin. Teamwork promotes mutual interests, harmony, respect, cooperation and understanding between volunteers from diverse backgrounds.

Recruitment and Selection

Volunteers will be recruited and selected according to their suitability in helping meet the needs of Clonmel Tidy Towns activities.
Volunteers over 18 can sign up themselves and commit to the service. Child members can only attend with a parent or guardian. Volunteers have a duty to take reasonable care of themselves and others who could be affected by what they do or fail to do.
Clonmel Tidy Towns reserves the right to end a volunteer agreement at any time.

Health and Safety

When required, volunteers will be provided with safety equipment which they are required to use.

Volunteer Agreement

All new volunteers must sign an agreement which lays out general and specific expectations. This does not amount to a contract of employment, but clearly sets out what either party can expect from the other.

General expectations

Volunteers should:

  • Have the right to be made welcome and to feel involved and valued.
  • Be expected at all times to promote a spirit of cooperation with other team members. They are expected to acquaint themselves with and work in accordance with the values of Clonmel Tidy Towns.
  • Undertake only those tasks and responsibilities as arranged and agreed by the Chairperson.
  • Respect confidentiality and GDPR laws at all times.
  • Report all accidents, serious incidents or damage to equipment immediately to the chairperson or leader of the project.
  • Have the right to representation on the project co-coordinating committee provided an active part is taken in the project.
  • Have the right to withdraw volunteering services without notice.

Specific Expectations

  • Use of social media is assigned to a volunteer committee member who manages the accounts.
  • Slack, Whatsapp or other messaging services for the Clonmel Tidy Town are for Clonmel Tidy Towns activities only. No more than 5 photos to be put in the group and they must relate to Clonmel Tidy Towns activities. GDPR rules apply to these groups.
  • All projects and project funding are assigned by the chairperson of Clonmel Tidy Towns.
  • Volunteers are encouraged to take leadership on a Clonmel Tidy Towns project, projects are subject to agreement by the chairperson prior to commencing and monthly updates to be sent to the Chairperson.

Expenses

Subject to prior agreement and the project budget, any eligible costs incurred during volunteering will be reimbursed.

Insurance

Public Liability cover is in force to protect the project's legal liability for third party injury or property damage arising in connection with the work. Health and safety equipment provided must be used at all times.

Constitution

1. Name

  1. The name of the group shall be 'Clonmel Tidy Towns' – hereafter referred to as the group.

2. Objectives      

  1. The enhancement of the physical and social environment of Clonmel.
  2. To represent Clonmel In the National Tidy Towns competition and any other competitions as deemed beneficial to the promotion of the town, by decision of the committee.
  3. Liaise with relevant governing authorities to aid the development and management of a litter free, clean and green environment for the towns people.
  4. Liaise with other local groups to enhance the physical environment of Clonmel.
  5. The group will uphold equal opportunities and work towards good relations amongst all members of the community, specifically prohibiting any contact which discriminates or harasses on grounds of race, disability, political belief, sex or sexual orientation.

3. Membership

  1. Membership shall be open to all those who are committed to obtaining the objectives of the group.
  2. Each active member shall be entitled to one vote at general meetings.
  3. All voting members (according to the Volunteer policy) must be over 18years of age.
  4. Membership shall be free from subscription.
  5. Clonmel Tidy Towns recognise the value of those under 18 years of age. Clonmel Tidy Towns are committed to their involvement under the supervision of their parent or guardian.

4. The Committee

  1. A committee shall be elected at the Annual General Meeting (AGM|) of the group and serve 12 months.
  2. All committee members have equal voting rights.
  3. The AGM shall elect from within their members a Chairperson, Secretary and Treasurer. These members shall have to power to co-opt other members to the committee during the course of the year. There shall only be one officer position per household, business or grouping of the aforesaid three principal officer positions of Chairperson, Secretary or Treasurer. Other positions created as required shall also be filled.
  4. Where the position of the officer board becomes vacant during the course of the year for whatever reason, then the committee shall co-opt a member to fulfil the duties of the role.
  5. The committee and office bearers shall make and carry out decisions in accordance with the objectives of the group as outlined in section 2 above.
  6. Meetings of the committee shall be open to any member of the group who is invited to attend.
  7. There must be at least 3 committee members present for any decisions to be made at a committee meeting.
  8. Committee members can be voted off if they have not attended 3 consecutive meetings without good reason and have not submitted same.
  9. Committee members must declare any interest they may have in the topic under decision and the committee will decide if they need to forfeit their right to vote on this occasion.

5. Conduct of business or standing orders

  1. The chairperson shall chair all meetings of the group, except in cases where there is a conflict of interest. In the event of the absence of the chairperson, the committee shall elect a committee member to chair the meeting.
  2. Members shall only speak through the chair.
  3. Decisions will be agreed by a simple majority, voted in through a show of hands or if deemed necessary a secret ballot.
  4. In the event of a divided vote on decisions to be made, the chair shall have the casting vote.
  5. Meetings will start and end at the time agrees by the committee unless all those present agree otherwise.
  6. Any offensive behaviour, including racism, ageism, sexism or inflammatory remarks will not be permitted.
  7. Any member who brings the group into disrepute or refuses to comply with the constitution shall be cautioned/expelled on a majority vote of the full committee.
  8. Any such member will have the right to appeal within 28 days of the expulsion. The appeal shall be heard by the membership at an Extraordinary General Meeting called for the purpose.
  9. Agendas will be distributed to the membership at least 4 days before a meeting where possible. Items for the agendas should be forwarded to clonmeltidytowns@gmail.com seven days before the meeting where possible.

6. Finances

  1. The group may raise funds by obtaining grants from other bodies, by fundraising schemes, or by seeking voluntary contributions from local businesses and business organisations. All monies raised by or on behalf of the group shall be used to further the objectives of the group.
  2. A bank account shall be maintained in the name of the group.
  3. The Treasurer, Secretary and/or Chairperson shall be signatories on the account.
  4. Accounts shall be kept and made available upon request to any committee meeting where they may be inspected.
  5. Receipts should be obtained for all expenditure. No spending is permitted without the approval of the committee.
  6. No officer shall sign a blank cheque.
  7. A second committee will be asked to verify the accuracy of the accounts before they are presented to the AGM and signed off to this effect.
  8. The assets and equipment of the group shall vest in the officers of the group who shall hold same in thrust for the group.
  9. Finances shall be a standing item on the quarterly meeting.
  10. All correspondence to the group shall be addressed to clonmeltidytowns@gmail.com

7. Annual General Meeting

  1. An AGM shall be held every year before the end of the 4th quarter to discuss the activities of the group, to receive the accounts and to elect the committee.
  2. The AGM shall be held at a suitable venue to accommodate as many members as possible.
  3. The Quorum shall be 51% of members present with a minimum of 5 attendees.
  4. Notice of at least 21 days shall be given to members of the AGM.
  5. At the AGM current members of the committee shall step down.

8. Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM)

  1. EGM's shall be called when the committee deem it necessary. A member of the group with the support of at least 3 committee members and written support of at least 5 voting members can also call an EGM.
  2. Notice of at least 14 days shall be given to members of an EGM.
  3. Voting rules as per the AGM and as per the constitution apply to the EGM.

9. Changes to the constitution

  1. This constitution shall only be changes at an AGM or at an EGM of the group.
  2. This constitution may only be amended at the AGM or EGM with the support of two thirds of the members present who entitled to vote.
  3. All members shall be given the required notice as defined by the meeting requirements along with the proposed changes.
  4. Changes must be submitted to clonmeltidytowns@gmail.com not less than 28 days before the AGM or 14 days before an EGM.

10. Dissolution of the group

  1. The group may only be dissolved by a special meeting called for that purpose. Such a meeting shall come about following a proposal in writing signed by a simple majority of those remaining on the committee being submitted to clonmeltidytowns@gmail.com
  2. All members shall be informed of such a meeting 21 days before the date of the meeting.
  3. Dissolution of the group shall only take effect if agreed by two thirds of the members present who are eligible to vote.
  4. Any assets and funds remaining after the dissolution and meeting of the groups liabilities must be distributed among local charities or other community groups with aims similar to the group, nominated at the meeting.
  5. On dissolution any documents belonging to the group shall be disposed of in a manner agreed at the meeting.