VHS now has a brand new constitution and charitable purposes, following an Extraordinary General Meeting held on 28th February 2019, where VHS’s Full Members voted unanimously to adopt new ARTICLES OF ASSOCIATION. OSCR had previously approved the proposed new charitable purposes. The new Articles will serve our membership better, strengthen our governance, reflect our obligations under company and charity law, and ensure we have a constitution that reflects the modern, dynamic organisation that we are.
VHS’s charitable purposes are now:
The advancement of health, the advancement of education, the advancement of citizenship and community development, and the relief of those in need, through:
5.1 The provision of an effective network for voluntary health organisations; Working for sustainable improvements in health and social care services, health improvement and public health;
- Working to prevent, mitigate and reduce health inequalities, including through education and awareness-raising about the underlying causes of such inequalities, including poverty and discrimination;
- Supporting voluntary health organisations to improve their knowledge, understanding and skills to engage with health related priorities, policy, systems, personnel and partnerships;
- Promoting the voluntary health sector’s role, expertise and evidence to a wide audience;
- Working to make effective collaboration and partnerships on health related matters between the public and voluntary health sectors normal and valued.
The new Articles include an index for the first time, correct references to relevant legislation, provide for clearer terms of office of board members and office bearers, and allow the appointment of four co-opted members to the Board rather than the current limit of three. Rather than attempt to amend the existing Articles incrementally, VHS set aside its existing Articles (last amended in 2009) and Articles provided by Edinburgh Council for Voluntary Organisations. In adapting these we have been guided and supported throughout by VHS Board Member Ian Brooke who is a staff member of EVOC, to ensure they are entirely fit for VHS’s specific purposes.