What is happening at Sunday Assembly London?
We are reorganising! Since Ruth joined as Community Creator, we found that the old model of committee wasn’t really working any more. No Sunday Assembly London has had a community creator before, so we are figuring out how that works within the organisers. We finally came to the conclusion to disband the old, messy structure and get more organised!
What was wrong with the old committee structure?
Well, apart from the fact it was an invited committee (i.e. not voted for by the community) there was no clear structure, it having evolved out of enthusiastic people joining together in the early days to make sure SA London was reflecting the needs of its then blossoming community. Having spent the last year attempting to regulate and set governance for the existing committee, it seemed that actually the model we were basing it on (classic club organisation) wasn’t going to work for what we wanted - a forum to make sure as many committed members of the community voices were heard as possible. And so we voted on 19th of September to disband this committee (7 In favour 2 Abstain 1 absent) and take on a new structure, proposed by Ruth Moir, our community creator and Jacqueline Gunn, Sunday Assembly Chief Community Creator
I didn’t even know we had a committee!
That was part of the problem - we were not a very visible committee, mainly because we had evolved and so it was that it had always been there, that we stopped seeing it. But for your information - in its last incarnation, the committee looked like this Vanda Green - Acting Chair, Fundraising
Chris Tennant - Finance
Puppi Wasi - Secretary
Colin McClure - Front of House
Emma Broomfield - Music coordinator
Ian Joliet - Social
Sanderson Jones - Live Better
Pippa Evans - Co-Founder
Corinna Ilschner - Social Media
So what now?
The proposed structure is not finalised but is based on one used by various volunteer and community groups across the land. So it is a new structure for us, but a proven structure for similar organisations (i.e. heavily volunteer led). It will increase number of voices heard and protect us from burnout, which has been a problem for Sunday Assembly London since the beginning.
It’s when volunteers take on too much, feel overwhelmed and unable to get help, thus leading to overworking, feelings of resentment to the organisation and exhaustion. It’s not nice. If you think you are suffering from burnout, please do speak to Ruth.
When will this new structure be finalised?
Ruth is working on the final idea alongside a Transition Team. We will make sure that what we finally present to the Sunday Assembly London community is a strong model.
Will it work perfectly and there will be no problems ever again?
Of course not! This is a volunteer organisation for something that has never quite existed before. There have been other incarnations of secular congregations, but we are unique because we are who we are. We will implement the model in the next couple of months and if we all pull together, in theory, this should be a much fairer, clearer structure than what we had before.
Who is on the Transition Team?
Ruth Moir is heading up the Transition Team, assisted by Vanda Green, Colin McClure, Pippa Evans, Chris Tennant and Emma Broomfield.
Hang on! Aren’t they just half of the old committee?
Yes! It seemed the most sensible option to have a few people who know the lay of the old land to help transition into the new one.
I don’t like it! What can I do?
Well, there isn’t anything to not like at the moment, apart from uncertainty. All we can offer you is reassurance that we are working as hard and fast as we can to get to a place where we can present the new structure at a Town Hall Meeting.
What’s a Town Hall Meeting?
It’s a meeting which anyone from the community can attend who is interested in structure, etc, and hear an update from Ruth and the Transition Team, and ask questions about the current state of the nation.
I have a question - who can I ask?
Ruth Moir is always the first port of call as our Community Creator. You can email her firstname.lastname@example.org. However you can also approach any of the Transition Team, who will gladly answer your questions as much as they can.