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Bellacragher Bay Boat Club

This constitution was adopted by the membership in [Annual] General Meeting on the 24th day of February 2003

Signed: Seamus Butler (Chairperson) Brian Masterson (Secretary)

The name of the Club is Bellacragher Bay Boat Club herein called “the Club”.

Subject to the matters set out below the Club and its property shall be administered and managed in accordance with this constitution by the members of the Management Committee, constituted by clause 5 of this constitution (“the Committee”).


  • 3.1 Encourage use of the Sea in a safe and structured manner.
  • 3.1.1 Create a club to serve the local people, training members to approved marine standards and creating a team of qualified in-house instructors that will make Bellacragher bay Boat Club a self-sufficient organization.
  • 3.1.2 Take note of local requirements regarding marine infrastructure and training and represent the community in trying to achieve improvement.
  • 3.1.3 Encourage participation by people with special needs.
  • 3.1.4 Identify young people with Leadership qualities and help them develop3.1.4 Source funding to advance the goals of the Club
  • 3.1.5 Train members to ISA standards
  • 3.1.6 2010- To have a team of qualified in-house boating instructors.
  • 3.1.7 Build Club Fleet
  • 3.1.8 Provide service to members at cost price, remaining a non profit Club


  • 4.1 Membership of the Club shall be open subject to approval by Committee Chairperson and Secretary, all members will be entitled to vote at a general meeting.
  • 4.2 Members will be expected to play an active part in Boat maintenance and fundraising
  • 4.3 Members must abide by the Code of Conduct


  • 5.1 The Committee shall meet not less than Six times a year and shall consist of not less than four members of the Club.
  • 5.1.2 Any member of the Committee who fails to attend consecutive Committee meetings without reasonable excuse shall lose her/his place on the Committee


  • 6.1 The Committee may make such regulations or procedural rules, as they consider appropriate for the efficient conduct of the business of the Committee and the Club PROVIDED that such regulations or rules shall not be
    inconsistent with this constitution and shall be subject to amendment by the members in Annual General Meetings.
  • 6.2 The Committee may appoint such staff, as they consider necessary on such terms and conditions as they may determine.
  • 6.3 The Committee may appoint such sub-committees, advisory groups or working parties of their own members and other persons as they may from time to time decide necessary for the carrying out of their work, and may determine their terms of reference, duration, and composition. All such subcommittees shall make regular reports on their work to the Committee.
  • 6.4 The proceedings of the Committee shall not be invalidated by any failure to elect or any defect in the election, appointment, co-options or qualification of any member.


All meetings of the Club or of the Committee or of any of its subcommittees shall be presided over by its Chairperson failing whom its Secretary if one has been appointed. If neither the Chairperson or Secretary are present, those present may elect one of their numbers to take the Chair. [The Chairperson of any meeting shall have a second or casting vote.]


  • 8.1 All money raised by or on behalf of the Club shall be applied to further the objects of the Club and for no other purpose PROVIDED THAT nothing herein contained shall prevent the payment of legitimate out-of-pocket expenses to members of the Club engaged upon the approved business of the Club.
  • 8.2 The Treasurer shall keep proper accounts of the finances of the Club.
  • 8.3 The financial year of the Club shall run from 1st January to 31st December.
  • 8.4 A bank account shall be opened in the name of the Club with Ulster Bank Westport or with such other bank as the Committee shall from time to time decide. All cheques must be signed by either the Chairperson or the Secretary.


  • 10.1 The Annual General Meeting of the Club shall be held not later than the 15th Dec 2003 an Annual General Meeting of the Club shall be held at such place and time (not being more than l5 months after the holding of the preceding Annual General Meeting) as the Committee shall determine.
  • 10.2 At such Annual General Meeting the business shall include the following:
  • 10.2.1 the election of members to serve on the Committee;
  • 10.2.2 the consideration of an Annual Report of the work done by or under the auspices of the Committee;
  • 10.2.4 the consideration of the audited accounts;
  • 10.2.5 the transaction of such other matters as may from time to time be considered necessary.


The Committee may at any time at its discretion and shall upon a requisition signed by not less than Three members having the power to vote and giving reasons for the request, call a Special General Meeting of the Club for the purpose of altering the constitution in accordance with Clause 13 hereof or of considering any matter which
may be referred to them by the Committee or for any other purpose.


  • Voting
    12.1 Subject to the provisions of Clause 13 hereof all questions arising at any meeting shall be decided by a simple majority of those present and entitled to vote thereat. [In case of an equality of votes the Chairperson
    shall have a second or casting vote.]
  • Minutes
    12.2 Minute books shall be kept by the Committee and all other subcommittees and the appropriate Secretary shall enter therein a record of all proceedings and resolutions.
  • Quorum
    12.3 The quorum at General Meetings of the Club shall be four and at meetings of the Committee shall be four or such other number as the Committee may from time to time determine.
  • Standing Orders
    12.4 The Committee shall have power to adopt and issue Standing Orders and/or Rules for the Club. Such Standing Orders and/or Rules shall come into operation immediately PROVIDED ALWAYS THAT they shall be subject to review by the Club in General Meeting and shall not be inconsistent with this constitution.


  • 13.1 Any alterations to this Constitution shall receive the assent of not less than two-thirds of the members of the Club present and voting at the Annual General Meeting or a meeting specially called for the purpose PROVIDED
    THAT notice of any such alteration shall have been received by the Honorary Secretary in writing not less than 21 clear days before the meeting at which the alteration is to be brought forward.
  • 13.2 At least 14 clear days notice in writing of the meeting setting forth the terms of the alteration to be proposed shall be sent by the Secretary to each member of the Club PROVIDED FURTHER THAT no alteration shall be made which would cause the Club to cease to be a charity at law.


  • 14.1 If the Committee by a simple majority decide at any time that on the grounds of expense or otherwise, it is necessary or advisable to dissolve the Club they shall call a meeting of all members of the Club who have the power to vote of which meeting not less than 21 days notice (stating the terms of the Resolution to be proposed thereat) shall be given.
  • 14.2 If such decision shall be confirmed by a simple majority of those present and voting at such meeting the Committee shall have the power to dispose of any assets held by or in the name of the Club.
  • 14.3 Any assets remaining after the satisfaction of any proper debts and liabilities shall be given or transferred to such other charitable institution or institutions having objects similar to the objects of the Club as the Committee may decide.

Amendment 10th April 2010

Child Protection Policy adopted

Bellacragher Bay Boat Club

Child Protection Policy and Procedures

Policy Statement
It is the policy of Bellacragher Bay Boat Club (herein “the club”) to safeguard children and vulnerable adults from physical, sexual or emotional harm. The Club will take all reasonable steps to ensure that, through appropriate procedures and training, children participating in Club activities do so in a safe environment. We recognise that the safety and welfare of the child is paramount and that all children, whatever their age, gender, disability, culture, ethnic origin, color, religion or belief, social status or sexual identity, have a right to protection from

In the context of this policy, ‘child’ refers to any young person under the age of 18. The policy also covers ‘vulnerable adults’, such as people with learning difficulties, or who have difficulty communicating, or who rely on others to provide personal care.

Bellacragher Bay Boat Club actively seeks to:

  • Create a safe and welcoming environment, both on and off the water, where children can have fun and develop their skills and confidence.
  • Recognize that safeguarding children is the responsibility of everyone, not just those who work with children.
  • Ensure that Club-organised training and events are run to the highest possible safety standards.
  • Be prepared to review its ways of working to incorporate best practice.

We will:

  • Treat all children with respect and celebrate their achievements.
  • Carefully recruit and select all employees, contractors, and volunteers.
  • Respond swiftly and appropriately to all complaints and concerns about poor practice or suspected or actual child abuse.

This policy relates to all employees, contractors and volunteers who work with children or vulnerable adults in the course of their Club duties. It will be kept under periodic review. All relevant concerns, allegations, complaints and their outcome should be notified to the Club Welfare Officer.

Bellacragher Bay Boat Club Welfare Officer

The Club’s Welfare Officer is Seamus Butler.

E-mail: [email protected]
Tel: 087 657 9348

Belmullet Garda Station 097 81910


All Club volunteers whose role brings them into contact with young people will be asked to apply for Garda Clearance through the Irish Sailing Association, The Club Welfare Officer will provide the application forms.

Good Practice

All members of the Club should follow the good practice guidelines attached (Appendix A). Those working with young people should be aware of the guidance on recognizing abuse (Appendix B).
The Club will seek written consent from the child and their parents/carers before taking photos or video at an event or training session or publishing such images. Parents and spectators should be prepared to identify themselves if requested and state their purpose for photography/filming. If the Club publishes images of
children, no identifying information other than names will be included. Any concerns about inappropriate or intrusive photography or the inappropriate use of images should be reported to the Club’s Welfare Officer.


Anyone who is concerned about a young member’s welfare, either outside the sport or within the Club, should inform the Club’s Welfare Officer immediately, in strict confidence. The Club’s Welfare Officer will follow the attached procedures Any member of the Club failing to comply with the Child Protection policy may be
subject to disciplinary action

Appendix A – Good Practice Guide

Handout for Instructors, Coaches, and Volunteers

This guide only covers the essential points of good practice when working with children and young people. You should also read Bellacragher Bay Boat Club’s Child Protection Policy and Procedures which are available for reference at all times.

  • Avoid spending any significant time working with children in isolation
  • Do not take children alone in a car, however, short the journey
  • Do not take children to your home as part of your organization’s activity
  • Where any of these are unavoidable, ensure that they only occur with the full knowledge and consent of someone in charge of the organization or  the child’s parents
  • Instructors and helpers on a course should avoid showering alone with youths. If possible, time other duties like RIB recovery or returning dinghies to their storage area.
  • Design training programs that are within the ability of the individual child.

You should never:

  • engage in rough, physical or sexually provocative games
  • allow or engage in inappropriate touching of any form
  • allow children to use inappropriate language unchallenged, or use such language yourself when with children
  • make sexually suggestive comments to a child, even in fun
  • fail to respond to an allegation made by a child; always act
  • do things of a personal nature that children can do for themselves

It may sometimes be necessary to do things of a personal nature for children, particularly if they are very young or disabled. These tasks should only be carried out with the full understanding and consent of the child (where possible) and their parents/carers. In an emergency situation which requires this type of help, parents should be fully informed. In such situations, it is important to ensure that any adult present is sensitive to the child and undertakes personal care tasks with the utmost discretion. On sail/camping trips all children must be accompanied by a parent or nominated guardian.

Appendix B – What is child abuse?

Child abuse is a term used to describe ways in which children are harmed, usually by adults and often by people they know and trust. It refers to damage done to a child’s physical or mental health. Child abuse can take many forms:

Physical abuse where adults or other children:

  • physically hurt or injure children (e.g. by hitting, shaking, squeezing, biting or burning)
  • give children alcohol, inappropriate drugs or poison
  • attempt to suffocate or drown children
  • in sport situations, physical abuse might also occur when the nature and intensity of training exceed the capacity of the child’s immature and growing body.

Neglect includes situations in which adults:

  • fail to meet a child’s basic physical needs (e.g. for food, water, warm clothing, essential medication)
  • consistently leave children alone and unsupervised
  • fail or refuse to give children love, affection or attention
  • neglect in a sailing situation might also occur if an instructor or coach fails to ensure that children are safe, or exposes them to undue cold or risk of injury

Sexual abuse. Boys and girls are sexually abused when adults (of the same or opposite sex) or other young people use them to meet their own sexual needs. This could include:

  • full sexual intercourse, masturbation, oral sex, fondling
  • showing children pornographic books, photographs or videos, or taking pictures for
  • pornographic purposes
  • sport situations which involve physical contact (e.g. supporting or guiding children) could potentially create situations where sexual abuse may go unnoticed. Abusive situations may also occur if adults misuse their power over young people.

Emotional abuse can occur in a number of ways. For example, where:

  • there is a persistent lack of love or affection
  • there is constant overprotection which prevents children from socializing
  • children are frequently shouted at or taunted
  • there is neglect, physical or sexual abuse
  • emotional abuse in sport might also include situations where parents or coaches subject children to constant criticism, bullying or pressure to perform at a level that the child cannot realistically be expected to achieve

Bullying may be seen as deliberately hurtful behavior, usually repeated or sustained over a period of time, where it is difficult for those being bullied to defend themselves. The bully may often be another young person. Although
anyone can be the target of bullying, victims are typically shy, sensitive and perhaps anxious or insecure. Sometimes they are singled out for physical reasons – being overweight, physically small, having a disability or belonging to a different race, faith or culture.

Recognizing Abuse
It is not always easy, even for the most experienced carers, to spot when a child has been abused. However, some of the more typical symptoms which should trigger your suspicions would include:

  • unexplained or suspicious injuries such as bruising, cuts or burns, particularly if situated on a part of the body not normally prone to such injuries
  • sexually explicit language or actions
  • a sudden change in behavior (e.g. becoming very quiet, withdrawn or displaying sudden outbursts of temper)
  • the child describes what appears to be an abusive act involving him/her
  • a change observed over a long period of time (e.g. the child losing weight or becoming increasingly dirty or unkempt)
  • a general distrust and avoidance of adults, especially those with whom a close relationship would be expected
  • an unexpected reaction to normal physical contact
  • difficulty in making friends or abnormal restrictions on socializing with others

It is important to note that a child could be displaying some or all of these signs, or behaving in a way which is worrying, without this necessarily meaning that the child is being abused. Similarly, there may not be any signs, but you may just feel that something is wrong. If you have noticed a change in the child’s behaviour, first talk to the parents or carers. It may be that something has happened, such as a bereavement, which has caused the child to be unhappy.

If you are concerned

If there are concerns about sexual abuse or violence in the home, talking to the parents or carers might put the child at greater risk. If you cannot talk to the parents/carers, consult the Club’s Welfare Officer or the person in charge on the day. It is this person’s responsibility to make the decision to contact the Garda. It is NOT their responsibility to decide if abuse is taking place, BUT it is their responsibility to act on your concerns.

What to do if you are worried that a child is being abused outside the sport’s environment (but the concern is identified through the child’s involvement in the sport)

  • If the child requires urgent medical attention, call an ambulance and inform the hospital doctor that you have a child protection concern
  • Report your concern to the club Welfare Officer who will refer the matter to Garda without delay.
  • Make a record of anything the child has said and/or what has been observed, if possible with dates and times.
  • If the Welfare Officer is not available, refer the matter directly to the Garda.
  • Remember delay may place the child at further risk.

What to do if you are concerned about the behavior of any member, volunteer, staff, coach or official working for Bellacragher Bay Boat Club.