What is an Association?

An Association is a group of people (called Members) who come together for a common purpose.

The motive for people to come together is to combine their energy and share resources to create or provide services and programs which they desire for themselves or to give to others. Thus, people who come together in a sport Association do so to create an environment which will provide themselves and others with coaching, competition organisation, sporting facilities and equipment, fundraising and social interaction.

Associations are managed by an elected management committee or board. The lead position on this management committee is called the President. Typically other key positions in the management committee include Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer. There will also be "ordinary committe members". See diagram of composition of a committee.

Members of the board or committee are usually unpaid volunteers. However, it is not uncommon for the secretary or treasurer to be given a stipend (Wikipedia definition) because of the amount of work they do and the expense they incur.

Associations may be incorporated or unincorporated. There is a very big distinction between these two forms. When people come together in the initial circumstances to form an association, the association will be unincorporated adn it will remain so until, the members of the organsition complete the steps to become incorporated.

Associations when they become Incorporated must follow a system of rules which is called the Constitution.

A very important rule about incorporated associations is that they are 'non-profit'.

If the Association is "wound up", that is ceases to exist, any surplus funds left over after all debts are paid must be given away.

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