Supporting Local Koi Clubs
As a National body it is extremely important that the British Koi Keepers Society provides support for the local koi clubs. We consider these clubs are a vital part of the hobby and it should be our role to provide a central infrastructure to assist them wherever possible.
When the present Committee was elected in 2012 one of the biggest issues we needed to address was the relationship between the Society and the local clubs know as Sections. It was very clear that we needed to find a simpler way both to finance and manage the relationship to ensure we could provide the support needed both for existing Sections, and also to encourage the independent clubs which aren’t currently a part of the BKKS.
Historically the Sections were formed from BKKS members and it was a requirement that to be a member of the local Section, you were also required to be a BKKS member. Over the years this requirement has been modified to the point whereby a Section was required to have 10 BKKS members. This resulted in all sorts of problems and confusion and had no real reflection on how the relationship needed to work, to fulfill the needs of both the clubs and hobbyists in the modern age.
We therefore spent a lot of time engaging with members and Sections to try and understand the problems, the requirements of clubs, and proposed solutions. The questionnaire we produced last year provided a lot of useful information, and this combined with many discussions allowed us to sit down and consider the best way forward.
Twice a year the BKKS holds National Committee Meetings where representatives from each Section have the opportunity to attend and discuss things as a group along with the BKKS Committee. At the most recent meeting on 29th September the main agenda item was our proposal for change.
It was great to see a good turnout of representatives, and many of those unable to attend had also been in contact by phone or email prior to the meeting to express their thoughts.
We had already identified that the only logical way forward was to set a simple annual affiliation fee for clubs which would reflect what was actually provided and the cost incurred, and this had already been agreed at the Annual General Meeting. Therefore the main purpose of the meeting was to agree the actual cost and the benefits which would be provided in return.
Having presented our costs to the attendees and after much discussion it was agreed by a resounding majority vote that as from 2014 the following simple system will apply:
It is worth noting that there are also many things the BKKS is already setup to provide to Sections. Our relationship with Koi Carp which provides us with several monthly pages of content which we control means that we are able to provide the opportunity for Sections to market themselves and their activities. The ongoing development of our website is also taking into consideration how we can assist the Sections. Our National Show also provides the opportunity for Sections to promote themselves both by attending and free advertising in the show programme. As you will see below we are also actively looking at new initiatives to help Sections and see this as an ongoing process.
During the meeting it was great to receive many positive comments from the attendees about the way the Committee were handling such issues, and ignoring the politics of the past, and this was rounded off, as the meeting closed, with a very welcome and impromptu round of applause from all who attended.
Since the meeting we have been pleased to hear that the first Section had already presented our proposal to their members who have voted to accept this change. Hopefully this will signal the start of a new relationship between the BKKS and local clubs and ensure we can all work more closely together for the benefit of the hobby.
BKKS Public Relations Officer
As part of the meeting we discussed the first of what we hope will be a number of initiatives to support Sections