GOOD GOVERNANCE

GOOD GOVERNANCE

GOOD GOVERNANCE

GOOD GOVERNANCE

Good Governance & Best Practice

IGG is a self-governing, uniformed youth organisation led by volunteers and supported by national and regional staff. Membership is voluntary and open to all girls and women who live their lives as female and accept the Guide Promise and Law. The National Office of the organisation is in Dublin and IGG is a registered charity.

IGG has full membership of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) through the Council of Irish Guiding Associations (CIGA).

IGG is independent from any political organisation or any political party and is registered with the Lobbying Register to which it submits quarterly reports.

The General Council is responsible for the control and general supervision of the organisation as per the Irish Girl Guides’ Constitution & Bye-Laws. The Executive Committee, subject to the supervision of the General Council, controls and manages the affairs of IGG. The Executive Committee consists of 20 members who meet on average 6 times a year. They are the Board of Directors and have responsibility for the organisation, ensuring it is run professionally and is in keeping with its aims and objectives.

The National Programme and Training Committee, subject to the supervision of the General Council, is responsible for coordinating the development and delivery of all aspects of the Guiding programme and maintaining communication between national Committees and Branches.

There are seven administrative Regions of IGG. Each Region has a Regional Commissioner and a Regional Committee/team. Within the Region there are geographical groupings of Areas and Districts, each one having a Commissioner and an Area/District team. Units of approximately 20-30 girls are run by a team of Leaders who have undertaken the relevant screening and training.

Goverance

Strategic Plan

#IGG2020 is the strategic plan of the Irish Girl Guides for 2016-2020. It consists of 12 national outcomes which we will work together to achieve over five years. The outcomes are interlinked and together they create the four strands of our work – Belong, Journey, Impact and Support. The plan encompasses all meetings, activities and events that IGG members are involved in across every county in the Republic of Ireland and internationally as global citizens. These activities are educational in nature and are based on girls and women striving to do their best. Our work towards #IGG2020 is monitored by our Leaders, Regional teams, national committees and staff. Evaluations take place each year via the annual targets progress report.

This strategic plan was developed in consultation with a number of our stakeholders and included research conducted on behalf of WAGGGS Europe Region; focus groups with parents and members; and SWOT analyses by ETBs and NYCI.

Every member of IGG can contribute to #IGG2020. In this video here of Ballina Ladybirds and Dundrum, Lucan and Ballina Guides, members are pledging to be a part of #IGG2020.

The Irish Girl Guides have produced yearly reports called the Annual Review which gathered together highlights of the Guiding year as well as reports from the Branches, seven Regions and various committees of IGG. It also reports a summary of the finances of the organisation and provides details of the office-holders.

Since 2017, and in line with the Code of Practice for Good Governance, the Annual Review is produced as two documents: 1) the Annual Report and Financial Statements 2017 and 2) a summary document called the IGG Overview highlighting the key activities of the organisation in the corresponding year with a governance and finance overview.

Previous Annual Reviews, the Annual Report and Financial Statements 2017, and the IGG Overview 2017 are available here. Please contact National Office should you require any further copies.

Finance Committee

The financial affairs of the organisation are managed by the Finance Committee with responsibility to, and in consultation with, the Executive Committee. The Finance Committee is responsible for the audit, budgeting and finances which are all subject to detailed review and are outlined here in the Terms of Reference for the Finance Committee:

Adequate systems of internal control are in place which aim to ensure compliance with laws and policies, ensure efficient and effective use of resources, safeguard assets and maintain the integrity of the financial information produced. IGG’s properties are vested in the Irish Girl Guides Trust Corporation Company Limited by Guarantee, which is represented on our Executive Committee and is registered as a separate charity.

IGG believes it is imperative for all organisations in receipt of public funding to live up to their fiduciary responsibilities in terms of corporate governance. Each Unit, District and Area keeps proper financial records for which they appoint a treasurer who monitors the finances at local level. Regions’ and Committees’ financial records are checked on an annual basis by a suitably experienced person.

IGG’s national income is dependant on a grant from the Department of Children and Youth Affairs administered by Pobal (51%), membership fees (44%) and fundraising through grants, sponsorships and donations (5%). IGG’s national expenditure includes provision of resources to Units, training for Leaders e.g. First Aid or outdoor activities, national and regional events for youth members, development of the programme, travel for volunteers to meetings and activities, financial assistance grants for members in need, along with the costs associated with staff and maintenance of our National Office. An external auditor checks the annual national accounts.

Sponsors and Donors

We are grateful for support from:

Fundraising

IGG has committed to complying with the Irish Charities’ Tax Reform Group (ICTR) Statement of Guiding Principles for Fundraising by endeavouring to:

  • adhere to the core principles of respect, honesty and openness
  • demonstrate commitment to donors
  • ensure high standards of fundraising practice
  • be financially accountable

The full statement of compliance and our Donor Charter are available here:

We welcome your feedback on our performance in relation to our finances via any of the contact points provided below:

Suzanne Smith, Managing Director, Trefoil House, 27 Pembroke Park, Dublin 4

Tel: 01 6683898    Email: managing.director@irishgirlguides.ie.  We are open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.

Complaints

If you wish to make a complaint about any aspect of our financial matters,  please follow our Complaints Procedure.

Annual Accounts

Safeguarding and Child Protection

Organisations that provide services to children, in conjunction with everyone else, have a duty and responsibility to protect children.  Our Safeguarding and Child Protection booklet was written to emphasise that the welfare of all our members is of paramount importance.

It outlines the

  • ways we ensure that the children in our care are protected from harm of all kinds
  • necessity to recognise that children and adults have rights as individuals and must treat each other with dignity and respect
  • links established with parents/guardians
  • procedure when responding to suspected child abuse
  • method of recruitment and screening potential volunteers
  • procedure for responding to accidents and complaints
  • procedure for responding to alleged or suspected incidents of abuse
  • procedure for suspension and withdrawal of Leaders where necessary
  • procedure for suspension of and, if necessary, termination of a child’s membership
  • procedure for the child protection training for Leaders
  • procedure of support for IGG members, Leaders and Unit Helpers

Child Safeguarding Statement

Under the Children First Act 2015 organisations classed as providers of relevant services are required to produce and publish a Child Safeguarding Statement. This is a written statement that specifies the service being provided and the principles and procedures to be observed in order to ensure, as far as practicable, that a child availing of our service is safe from harm.

The Child Safeguarding Statement should provide an overview of the measures that our organisation has in place to ensure that children are protected from harm. It also refers to more detailed policies which can be made available on request.

A copy of the Irish Girl Guides Child Safeguarding Statement is provided here.

Charities Regulation

IGG is registered with the Charities Regulatory Authority in Ireland. Our CRA number is 20006327. IGG is also registered with Revenue and its CHY number is 4726.

We recognise the importance of maintaining the highest standards of corporate governance in the interest of all. Irish Girl Guides has adopted codes of best practice which go beyond the minimum legal requirements in order to ensure the highest level of transparency and accountability.

Governance Code

We are compliant with the Governance Code for Community, Voluntary and Charitable Sector in Ireland – www.governancecode.ie – Irish Girl Guides is a Type C organisation and a copy of the declaration is provided here:

National Quality Standards Framework (NQSF)

IGG was one of the first youth work organisations to take part in the National Quality Standards Framework for Youth Work (NQSF) when it was introduced. The NQSF enables us to review and assess our work on a cyclical basis and to have it externally assessed, thereby assisting the continuous development of services to our members.

National Youth Strategy – Better Outcomes, Brighter Futures

The Executive and Programme & Training Committees are responsible for the strategic direction of IGG and currently monitor the activities to ensure the organisation achieves its agreed outcomes as stated in our Strategic Plan which links with the Department of Children and Youth Affairs National Youth Strategy 2015-2020. The outcomes of IGG’s work contribute to the desired outcomes of the strategy.

NYCI Health Promoting Q-Mark

IGG is a health promoting organisation and has been recognised by the National Youth Council of Ireland with a Gold Standard Quality Health Mark for the last number of years. Health promotion is an integral part of our programme and way of work.

Dochas’ Code of Conduct

IGG is a signatory of the Dochas’ Code of Conduct on Images and Messages and strives to ensure that “choices of images and messages will be made based on the paramount principles of:

  • respect for the dignity of the people concerned;
  • belief in the equality of all people; and
  • acceptance of the need to promote fairness, solidarity and justice.”

You can find out more, including how to give us feedback, here.

Leave No Trace

The Irish Girl Guides have adopted the ‘Leave No Trace’ message as their standard guideline for all outdoor activities. The ‘Leave No Trace’ message has replaced the Country Code and their brochure is available to download here:

To maintain our high standards and ensure best practice, the Irish Girl Guides has a number of policies and procedures. As well as those stated below, IGG also has operational policies such as Health & Safety, Reserves, Protective Disclosures, and a number of guidelines which support our work. Details of all of these are available to Leaders in the Leaders’ Area or can be made available to the public on request by contacting the Managing Director c/o National Office.

Child and Adult Protection Policy

The Irish Girl Guides values its members and has a programme aimed at the development of girls and young women in which all aspects of unsociable behaviour including bullying, harassment and abuse are unacceptable. Our Leaders are trained to implement our programme in which the needs of the girl are a priority. All Leaders must understand and agree to abide by the Irish Girl Guides’ Child and Adult Protection Policy.

Conflicts of Interest and Conflicts of Loyalty Policy

Irish Girl Guides has Conflicts of Interest and Conflicts of Loyalty Policies and each year members of Executive Committee (Board of Directors) make a declaration of interests and loyalties which are reviewed by a sub-committee.

Data Protection

Under the Irish Data Protection legislation, everyone has rights with regard to how their personal information is handled. In order to fulfil its mission, Irish Girl Guides may collect, store and process personal information about members, volunteers, staff, service providers and suppliers. Irish Girl Guides, as the Data Controller with responsibility for the management of personal data by its members, recognises the need to treat this data in an appropriate and lawful way and is committed to doing so.

Our Data Protection Policy document provides a concise statement regarding our obligations in dealing with personal data, in order to ensure that the organisation complies with the requirements of the relevant Irish legislation.

Equality and Inclusion Policy

The Irish Girl Guides respects and values the diversity of its members and of society. As an organisation we believe in being fair, open and inclusive, while still being committed to the concept of a girl-only organisation. IGG seeks to actively demonstrate its celebration of diversity and its commitment to equality by placing these tenets central to all the policies, processes and procedures of the organisation. The Equality and Inclusion Policy is available from National Office.

Recruitment and Selection Policy

The recruitment and selection process is one that is informed by principles and governed by legislation. Correct procedures must be adhered to and the rights of the applicant must be respected.

The process should be open, fair and transparent. It must be mindful of the needs of the employer and the young people it serves and also respectful of, and sensitive to, the needs and rights of the job applicant.

Substance Use Policy

The Substance Use Policy operates within the framework of the Irish Girl Guides’ mission statement and supports IGG’s aims and objectives in providing a safe environment for its members, while enabling girls and young women to learn skills that will help them to be responsible citizens and adults.

IGG holds the Gold Standard Health Quality (HQ) Mark as a health-promoting youth organisation. IGG is committed to the development, health and well-being of all its members and incorporates in its programme an awareness of a number of areas including drugs. In upholding IGG’s values all members should provide an example they would wish others to follow.

Volunteering Policy

IGG defines a volunteer as an individual who freely assists IGG without receiving any compensation for their time or services offered. IGG seeks to involve suitable adult volunteers who share the ethos and values of the organisation and have an interest in the development of girls and young women. IGG takes all reasonable steps to welcome and support our volunteers and value their contributions through training and clear policies and procedures. These are stated in this policy:

PR and Media Policy

The PR and Media Policy is designed to ensure that IGG makes the most of its media coverage and public relations activities to help protect and boost its reputation and support the organisation in its mission of enabling girls and young women to develop to their fullest potential as responsible citizens of the world. We recognise the significant role media coverage can play in people’s perceptions of the organisation and so we aim to maximise opportunities for positive media coverage.

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