Are members of a charity's supporters scheme members of the organisation?

Some organisations have different types of membership, including life members, subscription paying members, and annual membership schemes. The constitution should set out mechanisms for the approval (and removal) of members, and whether each type of membership is voting or not. It is usual for the ultimate voting control of incorporated organisations to be in the hands of the organisation’s members.

Care must be taken if an organisation also runs fundraising schemes such as “Friends”. Normally someone who is a Friend of the organisation is not a full voting member of the organisation itself, but rather someone who wishes (often in return for a subscription fee) to keep in contact with an organisation’s activities.

Other people may attend meetings as observers (if permitted by the organisation’s constitution) or may contribute to fundraising or to the running of an organisation in other ways.

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