Organise your group

Here you’ll find the guidance and documentation that you’ll need to run your group. 
For further bespoke support with group set-up and maintenance, please join our CAG Somerset network

If you have an idea for a project or a collection of like-minded people, we can support you to set up a new community group. Alternatively, if you are an existing community group or project, you could join our network and become part of a larger movement. The CAG team will help guide you through group set-up and the process of joining the network. Please contact us with a brief description of your group or project and will get in touch to arrange an initial phone call.

In the meantime, here is some general information and useful templates for setting up and organising your group.

Starting a new group

If you are wanting to set-up a community group, try to establish a group of at least 3 local community members who can help decide the groups aims and objectives. Have a think of what you would like your group to achieve and use this early stage to gain inspiration from other established groups. You will find many inspirational groups with exciting projects on our Community Groups page!

Constituting your group

It is good practice for all groups need to be formally constituted. The constitution is a statement about the group’s purpose and how it will be structured and run, which is agreed to by the group. It proves that your group is democratic, has clear intensions and processes and is nearly always a requirement when applying for funding!

If your group is new, CAG Somerset staff can help your group create a constitution. You can find a template constitution at the bottom of this page. Please note that adopting a constitution does not bestow charity status.

Alternatively, your group may decide to formalise its structure in a different way (e.g. by becoming a charity, co-operative or community benefit society), especially if you wish to become a social enterprise or hire paid staff members. Having a different legal structure does not exclude you from becoming a CAG Somerset member, you will just need to provide your terms of reference appropriate to that structure.

Appointing officer roles

According to what you decided in your own group’s constitution, you will need to have named officer positions, such as (but not limited to) chair, secretary, and treasurer. You can read more about the roles of officers in the template constitution below. You appoint these officers at an Annual General Meeting (AGM) or Special General Meeting (SGM).

Opening a bank account

To manage your finances efficiently, you may want to open a bank account within three months of establishing your group. CAG Somerset staff can provide advice on opening bank accounts and templates to help you manage your accounts.

Get going!

Now it’s time for the fun part… community action! Check out our Community Action page and our Risk Assessments page for how-to-guides and template risk assessments for a number of events and activities

Useful resources

Guidance and documentation that you’ll need to run your group

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A picture of a community allotment. wooden planters are in neat rows with small paths between them. Within the planters are different green leafy plants of varying heights. In some planters are canes growing peas. All plants appear to be seasonal summer vegetables. To the back right of the image are some sheds and the community allotment continues right through the image